Planning Your Homework Project
Setting aside a session to specifically plan your homework project will ensure your assignment goes smoothly. Planning your ideas and work schedule will help you to break your big project up into smaller, manageable tasks. In this way, you can banish stress and concentrate on making your project impressive, imaginative and enjoyable to complete.
The Planning SessionIf you are working in a group, agree a suitable time for you to all meet. Choose a place to plan your work where you will not be disturbed and where you wont be disturbing anyone else. Ensure you have all the materials you think you might need. You could all bring along some background research or think of some possible project ideas in advance to share with the group. Take twenty minutes to bounce your ideas around, writing them in spider diagram form on a large piece of paper. When this is complete, put the diagram somewhere where it can be seen by all members of the group. Discuss the pros and cons of each idea and choose three firm favourites. Sketch out a brief plan for each of these three ideas. Again, take a few moments to discuss what you like and dislike about each idea. Finally, settle on the one you all like best. If there are any disagreements, you may need to arrange a vote.
If you are flying solo on your homework project, simply conduct a similar, scaled down version of the group planning session.
Think AheadBefore you go any further with your project, think about what it is you want to achieve. Choose five key objectives and try to stick to them when you are completing your project. These might be related to the content of your project, an argument you want to put forward, the presentation of your work, or the effect you want your project to have on your reader or audience. At this stage, it is also useful to think about your audience and purpose. Is your project directed at your fellow students? Is it designed for younger children or for a purely academic purpose? Is your project intended to entertain, persuade or inform?
Collect Your ResourcesOnce you have decided on an idea for your project, make a list of all the possible resources you might need to make use of. From books to pictures, films to websites, try to come up with a variety of sources. If you are working in a group, you might like to allocate a certain type of research to each group member. Take a trip to the library to look for relevant books, magazines and journals. Browse the interest for useful websites and articles. Look for online images that you could use to bring a colourful visual element to your work.
Plan The Content of Your ProjectMake a list of all the building blocks that your project will be made up of and all the areas you want to cover. This plan will vary slightly depending on whether your project is to be presented on paper or in person. However, in both cases you will need to ask yourself similar questions. How do you want to introduce your project? Which areas of the subject you want to touch on? Which visual aids will you make use of? How will you make your project clear and accessible to your audience? If you are presenting your project in person, think about the different sections that your talk will be made up of. If you are working on a paper-based project, make a list of what each page will focus on. You will then be able to think about each part as a distinct section, to set an individual deadline for each and allocate it to a particular member of your group, if necessary.
Taking the time to construct a rough plan of your project before you begin is vital. In this way, you will be able to visualise how you want your project to be and to come across. Keep this vision in mind when you begin to work on each section in more detail. This will help you to ensure that each part of your project links together and contributes to your overall aims.