The Importance of Interactive Homework
One aspect for empowering students is to opt for an interactive homework. Interactive homework aims at involving parents in schoolwork and promoting students critical thinking skills. Homework is an interacting opportunity for parents to get more involved in school. It is a way to promote learning, because students’ achievement usually rises when they are very often assigned homework, especially if the assignment requires a parental help. For instance, it may involve the parents in discussing some issues with their children or to help them complete a project. According to Antonek, Tucker and Donato (1997), homework has three main interrelated levels:
· Homework shows to parents what and how well their children are learning and to what extent they are improving.
· It helps students to grasp well what have been learned in class and shows if the child can really perform without the teacher’s help.
· It informs parents about the curriculum and the extra-curriculum activities carried in and out of class and it encourages their support, suggestions and feedback.
In order to establish a meaningful communication through homework tasks, the following are the main characteristics of a homework assignment:
· Target different skills and help in maintaining the already mastered.
· Be clear enough and related to the activities done in class.
· Be empowering and meaningful to students.
· Evaluate students at different levels (what they know and can do with the language).
· Include tasks that are engaging for parents.
· Help parents to assess their child’s progress.
If the students face any difficulty with the assignment, it means that some remedial work has to be done in class. The teacher can also involve parents to discuss how they can help their child with the homework at home. In this case, the parents’ involvement in helping their child to complete the assignment at home is very crucial. It is important to note that homework should be well designed because parents may not have a good level in the target language, so they become learners along with their children.