Homework - Beneficial or not?
6:55:46 2018-10-04 138

So the school year started and you know for the first few days everyone is excited to meet new friends and see who and how his/her teacher is.

After like the first week, the teacher starts assigning homework for children to do at home.

Now let’s face it, no one likes homework, I’ve never seen a child his friend, “Hey what are you doing today?” and the child answers “Bro I’m doing the funnest thing ever, I have a lot of homework to do YAY!”

So kids we know you hate it, but how effective is it on your grades?

Now according to those who say that homework is beneficial, claim that it improves student achievement and allows for independent learning of classroom and life skills. They also say that homework gives parents the opportunity to monitor their child's learning and see how they are progressing academically.

On the other side, we have those who are against it, they say that too much homework may be harmful for students as it can increase stress, reduce leisure and sleep time, and lead to cheating. They also say that it widens social inequality and is not proven to be beneficial for younger children.

As kids return to school, debate is heating up once again over how they should spend their time after they leave the classroom for the day.

The type and amount of homework given has not only been a concern for students only but parents too for quite some time.

Today, kindergarten to fifth graders have an average of 2.9 hours of homework per week, sixth to eighth graders have 3.2 hours per teacher, and ninth to twelfth graders have 3.5 hours per teacher, meaning a high school student with five teachers could have 17.5 hours of homework a week, according to a US university study.

Now some schools have begun to give their students a break. A Massachusetts elementary school has announced a no-homework pilot program for the coming school year, lengthening the school day by two hours to provide more in-class instruction. But others are sure that homework is very important and are not implementing such a thing.

The most comprehensive research on homework to date comes from a 2006 meta-analysis by Duke University, which found evidence of a positive correlation between homework and student achievement, meaning students who did homework performed better in school. The correlation was stronger for older students—in seventh through 12th grade—than for those in younger grades, for whom there was a weak relationship between homework and performance.

Cooper’s analysis focused on how homework impacts academic achievement—test scores, for example. The report noted that homework is also thought to improve study habits, attitudes toward school, self-discipline, inquisitiveness and independent problem solving skills. On the other hand, some studies he examined showed that homework can cause physical and emotional fatigue, fuel negative attitudes about learning and limit leisure time for children.

So it has its pros and cons, speaking of pros and cons let’s check out them in detail.

Pros of homework

Homework improves student achievement.

Studies show that homework improves student achievement in terms of improved grades, test results, and the likelihood to attend college.

Research published in the High School Journal indicates that students who spent between 31 and 90 minutes each day on homework "scored about 40 points higher on the SAT test than their peers, who reported spending no time on homework each day, on average."

Homework helps to reinforce learning and develop good study habits and life skills.

Everyone knows that practice makes perfect. Students typically retain only 50% of the information teachers provide in class, and they need to apply that information in order to truly learn it.

Homework helps students to develop key skills that they’ll use throughout their lives, such as accountability, autonomy, discipline, time management, self-direction, critical thinking, and independent problem-solving. 


Homework allows parents to be involved with their child's learning.

Parents are able to track what their children are learning at school as well as their academic strengths and weaknesses.

Homework can also help clue parents in to the existence of any learning disabilities their children may have, allowing them to get help and adjust learning strategies as needed

It allows for a comfortable place to study

Some students claim that classrooms are too noisy and they’re not very focused or comfortable to do any work. There’s nothing better than laying down on your bed and focusing only on your work.

Now onto the Cons.

Too much homework can be harmful

A poll of high school students has found that 59% thought they had too much homework. 43% of respondents said that homework was their greatest source of stress, and 82% agreed that they were "often or always stressed by schoolwork."

The American Educational Research Association says that "whenever homework crowds out social experience, outdoor recreation, and creative activities, and whenever it usurps time that should be devoted to sleep, it is not meeting the basic needs of children and adolescents."

School is already a full-time job for kids 

An elementary school day might start at 9:00am and end at 3:20pm. That’s more than 6 hours of work that kids as young as 5 are putting into their education every day. Add in the extra-curricular activities that schools encourage, such as sports, and after-school programming and a student can easily reach 8 hours of education in the average day. Then add homework on top of that? It is asking a lot for any child, but especially young children, to complete extra homework.

It may encourage cheating on multiple levels
Some students may decide that cheating in the classroom to avoid taking homework home is a compromise they’re willing to make. With internet resources, finding the answers to homework instead of figuring out the answers on one’s own is a constant temptation as well. For families with multiple children, they may decide to copy off one another to minimize the time investment.

Homework disadvantages low-income students.

Some kids live in low-income families, which are less likely to have access to the resources needed to complete homework, such as pens and paper, a computer, internet access, a quiet work space, and a parent at home to help. They are also more likely to have to work after school and on weekends, or look after younger siblings, leaving less time for homework.  

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