Grade 1 - Homework

Make homework and learning fun!


This is the first year your little one is exposed to formal homework.  It is new to them and they need your help and guidance. Show them the way and help them to get into a routine.  Make sure you build good habits as we all know how difficult it is to change a bad habit.


  • Read the homework instructions and newsletters carefully and explain to your child what is expected of him.  Make complexed instructions easy by dividing them up into smaller chunks. 
  • Make a calendar and mark which days are tuckshop, PT, library, sport, assignments and tests - everything that is important.  Let your child refer to this calendar daily to remember when to pack his PT clothes, which days he must take tuckshop money with and by when essays, orals, extra murals etc are due – he can see for himself what his day looks like and what he must prepare for.
  • Make a special place for him to do his homework.  Somewhere where there is enough space for all his books, where it is quiet and has enough light and the right height for him to sit and write comfortably.  This area should be free from distractions and equipped with materials such as paper and pencils.  He will get to know his space - this is where he takes his books out and must make sure he packs them all in again.  If something is missing he knows where to look for it.  He will focus easier as he gets used to his surroundings and feel relaxed.  It is important for the child this age to have the correct posture and grip when writing as these are skills that is in a learning process.  Make sure he sits upright when practicing writing and holds his pencil correctly.  Children should not do homework on the floor, in the car (especially writing).  You can even go all the way and put relevant posters on the wall.
  • Agree on a specific time. Routine, routine, routine...  You and your Grade 1 learner must agree on when homework must be done.  After he had his lunch, or between 3 and 4 o'clock .  Agree on a time and make sure you stick to the schedule as well.  Not only can your child prepare himself, but you would not have to get into an argument about when homework must be done.  He will know this is part of his routine and will stick to it.
  • Do the work with your child. You need to help him, encourage him and motivate him. Do not leave him alone - he will loose interest. Your child wants to know if he is ‘on the right track’ and ‘what now?’  Make homework fun.  Make silly rhymes to help him remember the order of letters or draw a smiley face when he gets something right. Get yourself a set of nice stickers and award him when he practises additional worksheets. 
  • Praise him on his efforts, but be honest about the mistakes he made and help him in a positive way to rectify.  Remember children learn by repetition and example.
  • Make sure he packs all his books in his bag and is prepared.  If a child is prepared, they are more confident and positive about going to school.
  • Homework in Grade 1 should take at the most only 10 - 20 minutes.
  • Make sure your Grade 1 gets enough exercise during the day.  Not only does your Grade 1 sleep sounder, but exercise will improve his muscle and bone structure, blood circulation, self-confidence and self esteem. Studies also show that exercise makes your kids smarter.  Children who exercise on a regular basis score higher on standardized tests.
  • When your Grade 1 finished the homework and he wants to do more, you can refer to the suggested Language and Mathematics websites for more exercises.



Swallowed Poison

Centres Western Cape:

Red Cross Children’s Hospital

021 - 689 5227

Centres Gauteng:


0800 111 229

Snake Poison 

 Toll-free for poison control 

 0800 333 444