Because of time constraints, volume of material, and learning differences, it is necessary to assign work to be done outside of class. However, homework assignments should be purposeful. Students have a right to know and understand why they are being assigned homework because everyone's time is valuable. Homework should not be used as a weapon to buy time for the teacher or to punish the students. Homework should support, expand, and reinforce what is being learned in class.
Typical homework assignments in English will be reading. In-class time limits and student reading speeds make reading homework a necessity. Grammar and vocabulary practice may be assigned as homework, but only after a skill or concept has been introduced and explained in class. Regular practice reinforces newly learned skills and concepts. Most writing will be done in class. Student writers need the support and resources of their teachers. Writing is done in stages, and the teacher should monitor each stage. Long-term projects dictate that certain aspects will need to be done outside of class. Again, these projects have stages that need to be periodically checked by the teacher to ensure that the student is headed in the right direction.