• Welcome to

    The Russell School


Support with learning from parents is proven to be one of the most influential factors in ensuring a child's success as a learner.

Home Learning supports the development of an effective partnership between school and home and helps in fostering a love of learning in our children.

The purpose and value of homework has long been debated by educationalists. At The Russell School we believe that homework has a clear purpose in

  • encouraging our children to explore different resources for learning
  • offering our children the opportunity to extend their learning to the home
  • encouraging our children to bring their 'outside of the classroom' experiences into school
  • consolidating and reinforcing our children's skills and understanding
  • giving added practice to our children who are unsure
  • offering challenge to our more able children
  • motivating our children from an early age to get into the habit of completing tasks, enjoying their home learning, seeing its relevance and experiencing its benefits
  • encouraging our children as they get older to develop the confidence and self discipline needed to study on their own in preparation for secondary school
  • providing our parents with a direct link to the work of the classroom

Reading Home Learning
Many years of research have shown that reading is the key to success at school. The newest research shows that children who read for pleasure are likely to do better in maths and English than those who rarely read and that reading for pleasure is extremely important for a child’s development. To this end, reading takes the highest priority in our home learning schedule. All children from Reception to Year Six are expected to read daily, either with an adult or independently, and respond accordingly. This may be their reading practice book, their library book or a reading activity set by their class teacher. For Reception and Key Stage One, reading records should be signed every day confirming that our children have read each practice book. For Key Stage Two, our children should be encouraged to respond themselves in their reading records or class scrap books. Reading will also be supplemented in Reception and Year 1 with regular phonics practice.

Maths Home Learning
In discussions with parents, we understand that maths is the most challenging area in which to support our children. Therefore, at The Russell School, maths home learning focuses more on practising mental maths skills, such as number bonds and times tables, sharing a mathematical book or playing a maths game. This supports our children’s acquisition of the written maths curriculum in school at a faster pace and simplifies the support needed from parents. All children, from Reception to Year Six, receive a weekly maths home learning task. This will sometimes be targeted around the use of our specific mathematical support programs such as MyMaths or Times Table Rockstars.

These links provide some additonal support for parents. You will find some excellent videos designed specifically for each year group to support the teaching of the current curriculum.

Year 1

Year 2

Year 3

Year 4

Year 5

Year 6

The Big Question
At The Russell School we recognise the enjoyment and value of discovery and research, the need to have open-ended tasks in which our children can work at their own pace and the need to further develop the key skills of speaking and listening. As talk is a major precursor to becoming an effective writer, all year groups, from the Nursery to Year Six, are presented with a weekly task entitled ‘The Big Question’. It involves the children being set a question to discuss. They need to research this at home using discussions with family members, books, the internet, television programmes or newspapers. They then prepare themselves for a class discussion which takes place the following week. This develops those key skills of speaking, listening and debating as children progress through the school. The questions explore a variety of different age-appropriate subjects such as current affairs, science or philosophy. All children record their findings in a notebook. For the younger children, this may be recording with a parent using pictures and a few words. For the older children this will combine all areas of English – reading, writing, spelling and handwriting. There will be a particular emphasis on recording in Year Five and Year Six.

In order to fully support home learning, parents should:

  • provide a reasonably peaceful and suitable place in which to complete home learning
  • make it clear that home learning is valued
  • encourage and praise when home learning is completed
  • Be involved in home learning, particularly The Big Question

Parents can actively support their child if they are experiencing difficulties in remembering a skill, reading or understanding instructions or developing a strategy to complete a task. Parents are asked to annotate work to say how much support was given and if it was necessary.

If children (or parents) are having difficulties with home learning please go to your class teacher for help. We want home learning to support our children's success without creating anxiety or friction at home.