Homework is an important part of engaging students outside of the classroom.
It carries educational benefits for all age groups, including time management and organization. Homework also provides students with the ability to think beyond what is taught in class.
The not-so-good news is these benefits only occur when students are engaged and ready to learn. But, the more homework they get, the less they want to engage.
THE NEGATIVE EFFECTS OF HOMEWORK ON STUDENTS
Homework can affect students’ health, social life and grades. The hours logged in class, and the hours logged on schoolwork can lead to students feeling overwhelmed and unmotivated. Navigating the line between developing learning skills and feeling frustrated can be tricky.
Homework is an important part of being successful inside and outside of the classroom, but too much of it can actually have the opposite effect. Students who spend too much time on homework are not always able to meet other needs, like being physically and socially active. Ultimately, the amount of homework a student has can impact a lot more than his or her grades.
Find out how too much homework actually affects students.
How Does Homework Affect Students’ Health?
Homework can affect both students’ physical and mental health. According to a study by Stanford University, 56 per cent of students considered homework a primary source of stress. Too much homework can result in lack of sleep, headaches, exhaustion and weight loss. Excessive homework can also result in poor eating habits, with families choosing fast food as a faster alternative.
How Does Homework Affect Students’ Social Life?
Extracurricular activities and social time gives students a chance to refresh their minds and bodies. But students who have large amounts of homework have less time to spend with their families and friends. This can leave them feeling isolated and without a support system. For older students, balancing homework and part-time work makes it harder to balance school and other tasks. Without time to socialize and relax, students can become increasingly stressed, impacting life at school and at home.
How Does Homework Affect Students’ Grades?
After a full day of learning in class, students can become burnt out if they have too much homework. When this happens, the child may stop completing homework or rely on a parent to assist with homework. As a result, the benefits of homework are lost and grades can start to slip.
Too much homework can also result in less active learning, a type of learning that occurs in context and encourages participation. Active learning promotes the analysis and application of class content in real world settings. Homework does not always provide these opportunities, leading to boredom and a lack of problem-solving skills.
HOW CAN PARENTS HELP?
Being an active part of children’s homework routine is a major part of understanding feelings and of be able to provide the needed support. As parents, you can help your child have a stress-free homework experience. Sticking to a clear and organized homework routine helps children develop better homework habits as they get older. This routine also comes in handy when homework becomes more difficult and time-consuming.
Learn more about the current world of homework, and how you can help your child stay engaged.
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Infographic: How Does Homework Actually Affect Students?
Oct 04, 2016•Homework
For some kids, school work is actually done when the last bell rings at the end of the day.
According to AP, a growing number of elementary schools and other individual teachers have banned homework so kids can have more free time to play, spend time with their families and sleep.
Steven Geis, president of the National Elementary School Principals' Association, told AP that there's been pushback from parents in recent years from parents who say their kids' time is monopolized by homework.
He says students at North Trail Elementary in Farmington, Minnesota, where he is principal, do "engaging homework."
Teachers everywhere are revising their policies to be as effective as possible.
At the Orchard school, an elementary school in South Burlington, Vermont, Principal Mark Trifili told AP he's seen a serious spike in anxiety among students recently.
They opted to ban homework this school year based in part on the book "The Homework Myth."
"They're just kids. They're pretty young and they just put in a full day's shift at work and so we just don't believe in adding more to their day. We also feel that we are squashing their other passions and interest in learning," Trifilio told AP.
Alfie Kohn, the author of the book, told AP that homework is all pain and no gain.
"The disadvantages of homework are clear to everyone: exhaustion, frustration, loss of time to pursue other interests and often diminution of interest in learning," he said.
Kohn added that homework might be the greatest extinguisher of curiosity ever invented."Homework may be the greatest extinguisher of curiosity ever invented."
Harris Cooper, a professor at Duke University who has been studying the effects of homework for 30 years, disagrees.
He thinks all kids should be doing homework, but the type of homework can differ depending on level of development.
According to AP, his research found that homework is much more effective for middle and high school students than it is for elementary-age kids.
"Homework is like medicine. If you take too little, it does nothing. If you take too much, it can kill you," Cooper told AP. "You've got to get the dose right, and if you do, it can do wonders."
He said it teaches kids to learn outside the classroom, which then turns them into lifelong learners while improving independence and time management.
Cooper added that a lot of the backlash against homework comes from the fact teachers simply assign to much.
Now it's up to teachers to strike a balance between pushing their students to learn outside the classroom and giving them a chance to pursue other activities.
See photos from another school that banned homework:
School abolishes homework
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