Homework

What purpose does homework have in education? Like a lot of things, moderation is key. When reading “Homework is wrecking our kids”, I chuckled because of the power struggle we have nightly with our 2nd grader and his homework. By default, he has a negative attitude towards school and towards his teacher. Now his teacher is a very caring, older lady who likes quiet kids and straight lines and wants the best for her students, but she is turning kids off from herself and school with the overload of homework she assigns each night. The only valuable thing he has realized with his homework is it’s HIS responsibility and not ours to make sure it is done. The same thing he could probably learn by a few basic chores to do at home. We did have some family battles at night, but once he understood it was his responsibility the blow ups have been minimal. Don’t even get me started on my preschooler who had to cut out, color, and glue various sheets of paper nightly — AS A PRESCHOOLER! Homework doesn’t show any academic value at an early age and the cons definitely outweigh the pros.

As I read “Why Homework is Good for Kids” the only explanation I got out of it was homework gives kids time to do some work on their own. I felt like I was reading an uphill battle they already knew they lost. If school makes a certain class, topic, or subject enjoyable the kids will find time to do what they enjoy. If they enjoy reading, they’ll read a book after school. If they enjoy physical activity, they’ll engage after school hours. Don’t give kids reasons to look at education as a negative in the light that homework does.

I can see why homework is pushed as teachers want test score improvements and are looking for an edge to this and I do feel in moderation at an older age homework is appropriate. Use technology with high schoolers to collaborate a science project. Have a family night when helping your junior do their social studies family tree. Make it purposeful and enjoyable — that’s what homework should be. My child shouldn’t hate school as a 2nd grader because he has to do sheets of addition and subtraction, read a small book, and make a poster for homework.

Picture from: https://www.flickr.com/photos/wecometolearn/8066863117/
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