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Homework: The Truth


For many decades, children across the globe have been assigned loads of work after they have been subject to sitting in classes for around six-eight hours. Why are students being assigned too much work after school and is this work beneficial?

Homework has long plagued classrooms and it may not be completely terrible, but the amount of homework assigned to many students across the globe is atrocious. It has been shown by countless studies that heavy loads of homework isn’t beneficial. In many countries, such as Japan and Denmark, which less homework is assigned in, outperform countries like Greece and Thailand who assign large amounts of homework.

Lots of homework isn't only unnecessary, it also does more harm than good. Many studies have concluded that homework leads students to perform worse during the next day of class. The reason for this is that many students stay up late to finish their homework. Lots of students are busy and do extra curricular activities like sports and clubs. So they arrive home late and are tired and can not do their homework. This causes them to become tired the next day. Homework also leads to the student disliking school. This will make students dislike learning because of the time it takes. Many students don’t enjoy doing homework and learn in different ways. Only 44% of primary teachers think the amount of homework given to students is bearable. Also, many teachers assign homework that isn’t doing anyone any good. For example, middle school students may be assigned to color something. This would be normal from the art teacher, but when it is from the science teacher (which is what happened in a specific middle school case), it is strange and in this specific science teacher’s case, the homework didn’t have anything to do with science, it was, literally, a coloring assignment . Some argue what if she was just using a different teaching method to help students understand a topic, in some cases this is why the teacher is assigning the homework but most of the time it is not related to the topic or there are better ways of teaching a topic. Students are not only not learning, they are also wasting time and harming the environment because of all the paper needed to assign this homework. And when assigned digitally many students suffer something that is known as homework gap. The homework gap, also known as the digital divide, is the disadvantage of students who don’t have access to internet at home. Students who have internet access at home can just search something up if they don’t understand it. Compared to students who don’t, who have to to use books or asking parents.


Well, you may ask, how much homework are people doing? According to U.S. news, a poll was done on how much homework high schoolers do. The average result was a surprising 3.5 hours per day. Even more surprising is that the poll concluded that middle school students are getting assigned about the same amount: averaging 3.2 hours. According to the NEA and the National PTA, students should do 10 minutes of homework per grade level per night. This means 50 minutes for 5th graders, and 120 minutes for seniors. In Finland from K-8 children are assigned little to no homework. In high school, the average amount of homework a student gets daily is 20 minutes. Many are shocked to hear that Finland has one of the best education systems in the world when it doesn’t rely on homework. Lots of homework may lead to depression, breakups, or no spare time to socialize with other people. Homework has been proven to be the cause of many students’ stress. Many students in high school had to drop sports or music just to have enough time to do homework. As you can see, the amount of homework done is way more than the amount that students should do.


All in all, the amount of homework done by students in the the US is overwhelming. It has been shown that assigning homework doesn’t increase performance and in some cases, homework decreases it. Students in countries that assign little to no homework outperform students in countries that are assigned a hefty amount of work. Homework has also lead to many students being stressed which has led to them performing worse the next day. Homework can also cause students to be less emotionally healthy since students have less time to hang out with friends or do activities they actually enjoy. The amount of homework assigned is absurd. As you can see the amount of homework assigned should be reduced all around the world this will make students more productive and lead to a better future.




Bibliography

Un, Phonenix. "Teachers' Hands Are Tied over Heavy Homework Burden." The Standard. N.p., 23 Feb. 2018. Web. 26 July 2018.

Sahlberg, Pasi. "Why Finland's Schools Are Top-notch." CNN. Cable News Network, 06 Oct. 2014. Web. 26 July 2018.

“Why homework is bad: stress and consequences.” Healthline, March 11, 2014. Updated on August 11, 2016 and April 11, 2017.

Kohn, Alfie. "Rethinking Homework." Alfie Kohn. N.p., 18 Sept. 2015. Web. 26 July 2018.

“How Much Homework Is Too Much for Our Teens?” U.S. News & World Report, U.S. News & World Report, health.usnews.com/wellness/for-parents/articles/2018-03-20/how-much-homework-is-too-much-for-our-teens.

Stainburn, Samantha. “High Schools Assign 3.5 Hours of Homework a Night, Survey Estimates.” Education Week - Teacher Beat, Education Week, 28 Feb. 2014, blogs.edweek.org/edweek/time_and_learning/2014/02/high_schools_assign_3.5_hours.html.

“The Homework Gap: The 'Cruelest Part of the Digital Divide'.” NEA Today, NEA, 3 Feb. 2017, neatoday.org/2016/04/20/the-homework-gap/.

Horrigan, John B. “The Numbers behind the Broadband 'Homework Gap'.” Pew Research Center, Pew Research Center, 20 Apr. 2015, www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2015/04/20/the-numbers-behind-the-broadband-homework-gap/.




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