Parents Students

Why Home Study is Important

(a guide for students & parents)

When, as parents or carers, we choose a secondary school for our children, we are looking for the best. Whether this is the best academic education, the best extra-curricular provision or the best pastoral support, we are all looking for the best. At Nova, we want to provide your child with the best because we have high standards and we care for your child’s future.

In the highest-achieving schools in the country, students from Year 7 onwards can expect more than an hour of home study per day and even more once they reach Year 10. We want our Nova students, your children, to make greater progress than these students. Independent home study plays a vital part in helping students retain and recall the facts that enable tough problem solving and practicing vital skills in all subjects.

Home Study Expectations

Students in years 7, 8 and 9 at Nova are expected to read every day (and write summaries of their reading, checked by English teachers). There’s no doubt that reading good quality texts regularly makes people more intelligent. Furthermore, students receive homework tasks for all subjects that take 30 minutes per week. Most subjects use self-quizzing for home study tasks. You can read more about why self-quizzing is used so much at Nova here. In art and D&T, students have projects to complete over a term with staged 30-minute tasks each week. In year 10 and year 11, students will be completing 1½ hours of home study each week for English, mathematics and science, and 1 hour each week for their option subjects. Year 11s will, of course, be spending additional time on revision too.

Students in Key Stage 3 receive 45 minute detentions on the same day for each piece of missed home study. Students in Key Stage 4 receive 1½ hour detentions on the same day for each piece of missed home study (they stay until 5pm if they miss two pieces).

Keeping Track of Home Study

Home study tasks are set on epraise. Epraise is a really helpful website. By clicking on the “planner,” students can see their home study tasks. They can also find them listed under the “classnotes” button. 

Teachers give the instructions for the task, the due date, and attach documents if necessary (for example, knowledge organisers). You can open the documents by clicking the little cloud logo labelled ‘Download.’

Students can keep track of their home study by clicking on the red button marked ‘not done,’ which you can see on the picture. This changes it to a green ‘done’ symbol.  That way, you and they can see what tasks still need completing. Of course, their teacher will still decide if the home study is completed to the expected standard!

Supporting your Child

It is essential that families support their children with their home study. Here are suggestions that families should take to support their child.

  • Use epraise to access our Knowledge Organisers and and our 'Quizzing Home Study'
  • Look at the home study tasks set on epraise for your child
  • Ensure that your child reads daily for a minimum of 25 minutes when at home, then summarises their reading
  • Ensure your child has access to the internet for Hegarty maths, or send them to home study club if needed
  • Check your child’s quiz books and reading summary book
  • Orally test your child on their quiz book
  • Provide a calm quiet space to complete home study, free from distractions such as TV, mobile phones or the internet (except for Hegarty maths!)
  • Ensure that your child is asleep by 9:30 - 10:00pm and that they have no access to electronic equipment in their bedroom.
  • Encourage your child to attend home study clubs available to them if they need some support, or a place to work.

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