Homework Pros

Homework Pros-40
Meet the teacher day — that day right before the start of each school year when students learn who their teacher will be and go into the classroom with their parents to meet the educator — that day is way more stressful for most teachers than it is for the students.Sure, the student may be concerned if he or she will have a “nice” teacher or if any of their friends will be in their class, but many teachers see the day as much more — a chance to prove themselves worthy to a pessimistic group of parents who will be judging them for the next 180 days. I found that homework was a tough topic to work with since parents tend to have differing opinions on it. During my first years as a teacher, I tried to please all of those ideologies, but quickly realized it wasn’t possible (more on that later).Some of the more bizarre questions I remember from my years in the classroom: Those are the ones that catch you off-guard and require quick thinking to answer. Students who displayed sufficient mastery of the lesson during class had no use for busy work to do at home.

Meet the teacher day — that day right before the start of each school year when students learn who their teacher will be and go into the classroom with their parents to meet the educator — that day is way more stressful for most teachers than it is for the students.

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This fatigue only worsens over time and often hits its max peak right around March, when most schools are pushing students even harder in anticipation of standardized testing.

This fatigue can manifest itself outside of the classroom, too, as it seeps into emotional issues that affect personal and familial relationships.

Homework has its benefits — if the student needs the extra practice.

But giving homework simply for the sake of giving homework only leads to a waste of time that would be better spent with family and friends or developing the social and personal skills that will be needed to lead a happy, successful life.

I received so many angry emails that week from parents who threatened my job and livelihood because I didn’t give their child an A.

I simply had to explain to them that their son or daughter never once turned in a homework assignment — despite obviously knowing the topic and having no problem reciting any facts or figures and breezing through tests.Some parents saw that as punishment for the students who didn’t understand the topic.Some saw it as allowing their child, who made enough progress to warrant no homework, to get by without doing extra work.The basic question that is being asked is this: Do we really need homework?Numerous studies have shown that homework that is assigned, marked, and handed back (such as a worksheet on long division) is effective in increasing knowledge of a subject matter. Funnily enough, different studies have shown that homework does not necessarily increase a student's knowledge base, and is not an effective learning and teaching tool. As you can see, there are a lot of varying views on the necessity and even helpfulness of homework, especially for children, pre-teens, and early adolescents. Homework definitely has its benefits for building willpower and concentration, as well as developing academic skills that a student may otherwise lack.Working at home also provides students a (hopefully) quiet place to refocus on a topic outside of an otherwise busy classroom.Research has found that sacrificing sleep can lead to academic problems.In younger students, simply getting the proper amount of sleep can increase language skills and improve the chances of academic success — even more so than an increased homework load.Many studies on homework have settled on the “10-minute rule,” meaning that students’ homework load should be measured in minutes — 10 minutes multiplied by the student’s grade level.So, a second-grade student should get 20 minutes of homework each night, whereas an eighth grader would get 80 minutes.

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