Homework Strategies – Simplifying a Worksheet

Homework Strategies - Simplifying a Worksheet - sample complex sheetYou know the night.

It is 5:43. Dinner is not in the oven. School shoes have been left in front of the door so they can be tripped over tomorrow morning. Your young student, who wants nothing more than to jump from sofa to sofa to expend some energy, had been seated at the kitchen table with a fresh pencil in hand. And then?

Out comes the math worksheet (cue sound effect).

It is a super, jumbo, deluxe version.

Two sides!

3 categories each side!

Many examples for each!

Being mid-year, we have had several worksheets like this in a row. The work is getting heavy, and building on the past months’ work. I appreciate the wealth of knowledge that is being presented. Understandably, however, sometimes it can be difficult for a student to shift gears to focus on a complex sheet after a long day.

Last week I had an AHA moment and developed a “homework machine.”

I am sure it has been done before, but I was so excited I could not contain myself, and I had to share. It is simply a manila folder with the top half cut off on one side. This way, parts of the sheet can be covered so the student is only faced with one section, or even one row at a time. By presenting one part at a time, the worksheet can be easily tackled.

Homework Strategies - Simplifying a Worksheet - folder
Homework Strategies - Simplifying a Worksheet - folder with sheet
The worksheets can be loaded in the “machine” so that only one portion shows at a time.

The top and bottom of the worksheet can be folded as you work your way down, or simply covered with another piece of paper.

worksheet with top and bottom folded over to isolate section

I chose the ultimate bare-bones approach. There is nothing more “blah” than a manila folder. Let’s call it a prototype. However, it could be spiced up with colorful folders and a fun label.

Wishing you many happy worksheets in the days ahead!

Article focus: Homework Strategies – Simplifying a Worksheet