Home learning

We consulted with parents and staff in 2016 in regards to homework at St. Mary’s. Whilst research tells us that homework does not make a significant difference to children’s achievement, we have decided that there will be some requirement for our students to do some learning at home each day.

Children will not be sent home with homework worksheets. Often these are “busy work” and do not really meet student learning needs. We believe rather, that the following is more appropriate:



One reading book per day up to Gold level. After Gold level all children should read a text of their choice for between 15 and 30 minutes per day. You know your child best and are best able to monitor how long they should read for. We want to encourage a love of reading, so please don’t force your child to read for 30 minutes or more if this is distressing them. We encourage you to read with and to your child (this is appropriate up to the teenage years!). Please also talk to your child about their day and about their reading. The more we talk to our children, the better their vocabulary, critical thinking skills and comprehension. If you and your child speak a language other than English, we encourage you to read with them in this language and to discuss what you are reading together in this language. Similarly, it is great of you can discuss their English reading book in your first language too.



All students should work on number knowledge for between 10 and 15 minutes per day. Their teacher(s) will give you some ideas about the kind of maths you can be doing with them. Again, lots of discussion in real-life situations (driving in the car, at the supermarket, when cooking etc.) is great!


Physical Activity:

When children are not involved in after-school sport, 15-30 minutes of a fun physical activity (cycling, jumping on the tramp., walking the dog, scootering etc.).

Please note that we will not be sending home spelling words. Spelling and vocabulary building will be taught in class and we will be reviewing our approaches to these areas of learning later in the year to ensure that we are meeting the needs of every student.


Below are some links you may like to use to further your child’s learning at home.


NZ Maths

A useful website with activities for families to do with their children at home.

BBC Schools

This website has online learning games and activities across the curriculum.

Science Kids

This website has science based games, activities, facts and quizzes.

Study Ladder

This website has a range of activities and online games. It’s free but you will need to sign up.

National Geographic Kids

Diverse learning activities and facts.

KiwiKids News

Keep up with the latest news just for Kiwi kids.


A fun site that promotes curiosity and questioning, with lots of intriguing information.


A New Zealand based resource with interactive activities and games.