Monday, April 16, 2012

Poll Question: Names and Dates on Papers

It's poll time!

I've been kind of wondering about the subject of headings on papers for a while.  In a classroom, it's vitally important that students put their names (and usually the date also, especially older students) on their papers.  You can imagine how frustrating it might be to have five spelling tests or handwriting worksheets or whatever with no names on them.  If I wanted to be a detective, I wouldn't have wasted my time getting an education degree.  So, yes.  Names on papers, please.

That said, I never really worried about it at home.  I mean, I have two kids.  It's not like I'm going to mix up Harper's rainbow drawing with Ella's essay on owls.  Maybe if they were closer in age it might be more of a priority, but they aren't so it isn't.

But then I started wondering if I should require Ella to put her name on all of her papers simply for the purpose of habit-building.  She takes great pride in adding "written by Ella" to her short stories and more important papers without me having to ask her to put her name on them.
Still . . . I wonder.

Since I can't come to a conclusion in my head, and I'm really curious how other people handle this, I created a quick little poll in the sidebar.  Would you pretty please click on an answer for me?  Those of you in a reader will have to click through to the blog  to find it.  I placed it up in the top of the sidebar on the right.  It will be open through Sunday night, and I'll share the results next week.  Of course, feel free to leave a comment if you want to explain further how you handle this in your homeschool.  Curious minds want to know . . .


  1. I only sometimes ask my kids to write their names on stuff... and now that I think about it, it's generally not for schoolwork, but for artwork that I want to keep. Truthfully, I don't think it's that important. I mean, when they get to college, they'll have to do it, but I think they will be able to remember without 12 years of indoctrination. Maybe I will start requiring it when they get into middle/high school and I make them write formal papers. That'll be good practice.

  2. I always ASK that they do this...and they do NOT comply most of the time. I'm not going to deduct "points" or anything for it, though. I have noticed that my youngest LIKES writing his name and the date--probably because he has heard me begging, pleading, and drilling his sisters on it since he was TINY. :)
    Maybe make a point of having the date visibly posted so they can copy it easily, and then see what happens. I always like to be sure that SOMEONE dates those special things we keep.
    Does that help?

  3. I think I still have that "What if she has to go back to school?" mindset for some reason.

    I always date artwork, but I think I worry less about it on everything else because I file everything in that school year's binder.

    Thanks for the input!!!

  4. My kids are 10 and 12 and their handwriting is easy to mix up (especially if they print or if they are writing numbers.) However, my daughter likes to sign goofy names on her papers, and both of my kids doodle on their stuff so I can usually tell their stuff apart.

    As for forming the habit in case your daughter goes to school, it wouldn't take long to form the habit if she did. And kids get lots of reminders in a classroom situation.

    I worry about something different...I've been putting my kids' stuff in their various subject binders ever since we started homeschooling. It finally dawned on me that they are not learning how to do this. On the one hand, it's faster, easier, and more reliable if I do it. On the other, it's a valuable lesson in organization and responsibility, and I'm taking that away from them!

    Aah, the little anxieties that keep us awake at night... :-)

  5. I can definitely see the need for older kids closer in age. And I agree on filing the papers . . . I had every intention of involving my oldest in some kind of weekly paper-filing session. Um . . . there's a stack of papers several inches thick that neither of us has touched!

  6. I have 5 year old twins, so it is a must they write their names on their papers. Added bonus is the little extra handwriting.

  7. Twins . . . yep, I can definitely understand insisting on it in that case! :)

  8. I'm a little late to this blog, but I wanted to add my view.

    I have the girls use headings on all papers. This is a direction following as well as helping me in identifying whose paper and when it was done.

    I have the girls turn in their papers at the end of each month and this allows me to make sure it matches up to assignments. My girls are 9 and 10 and part of the heading and turning in papers at the end of the month is to try and introduce responsibility as well.

    I have a sample of the heading to be used for each subject. This also helps me knowing which paper is for "Ch 3" or "Ch 5". Also math work is done by even problems on even days, and odd on odd.


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