discussion, no homework

We Don’t Need Any More" How To Cope With Homework Lists" – What We Need Is a Debate!

Summer is coming and with that an onslaught of parenting magazines on how we can help our children cope with homework.  Cope – what an interesting word when combined with homework.  I know when I assigned homework regularly I thought I was adding to my students’ educational experience.  I thought I was deepening their thinking, to perhaps help them, teach them, deepen their knowledge.  Instead, it appears, I was merely helping them develop coping with a necessary evil. I was setting them up for whatever adult job that requires homework, I am still looking for this one,.

So, parenting magazine, how about an article on why homework should be revisited, why the whole merit of homework is diminishing and why homework really doesn’t need to be assigned.  How about giving parents a resource to start the conversation, the discussion that should be happening at all schools, particularly primary ones, about why homework can be outlawed.  How we can still teach students time management, perseverance, and study skills without homework?  Who will publish that article?

2 thoughts on “We Don’t Need Any More" How To Cope With Homework Lists" – What We Need Is a Debate!”

  1. I know that the last question on there is rhetorical, but come on … if it can't be published in a list of 7 simple steps or whatever, what's the use of publishing it, right?To add a voice to a debate, as much as we may not need homework, we also don't need blanket policies concerning homework. I've heard of schools and districts saying that teachers must assign X amount of work per week and I've heard of complete bans on assigning homework.That just shows a mistrust of teachers, to be honest. I teach two levels of high school English. One level (a general level) rarely does homework, and when it is, it's work on a project or something that couldn't be finished in class. The other (an advanced level) gets its fair share, but it's reading and papers. So, we as educators need to have this debate but we also need to be respectful of allowing autonomy when it comes to implementation of homework policies.Oh, and as for "coping" with homework? I dunno … I remember getting homework as a kid and learning how to prioritize and manage my time. It was a valuable lesson, especially when I hit high school and took AP classes.

  2. 1Tom – I think I am in agreement with your comment. Discussions about homework are valuable between colleagues and also between families and schools. It has been valuable for a school staff I worked with to co-construct criteria around what kind of homework was valuable to students. Reading? On the list. Worksheets? Eliminated.

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