Homework is something that occupies students all around the globe, but it is also the source of an ongoing controversy between parents, teachers, and educational higher ups. Most people agree that homework is useful for teenagers over about the age of 15, but what about for everyone else? The basic question that is being asked is this: Do we really need homework?
The Pros of Homework
Numerous studies have shown that homework that is assigned, marked, and handed back (such as a worksheet on long division) is effective in increasing knowledge of a subject matter. Homework has other positives too!
- Some students like doing their work at home better than completing work in class because at home it may be easier to create ideal working conditions based on a student's particular learning needs (for example, some students might want to listen to music while doing work, while others might need total silence in order to focus).
- There isn't always time to complete all work during the school day. Homework can be an opportunity for a student to delve deeper into a subject than they would be able to during classroom hours.
- Homework can help a student learn responsibility; it is up to you to schedule a time to do your homework and complete it within the parameters given by your teacher. Learning how to do this could help you with time management later in life.
The Cons of Homework
Funnily enough, different studies have shown that homework does not necessarily increase a student's knowledge base, and is not an effective learning and teaching tool. Let's look at why that might be.
- Homework gets in the way of family time. If a student cannot attend a family event or spend time with family because he or she must complete a homework project, he or she is being prevented from forming meaningful connections, engaging in stress-relieving activities, and possibly even exploring new experiences.
- A lot of the time homework is simply busy work. How much will you really learn from a standardized worksheet? If homework does not provide opportunities for meaningful learning experiences, it's unlikely that most students will get a lot out of it.
- All students have different learning needs, but homework is usually the same for every student, meaning that it doesn't address the needs of every student. This might mean that some students who do not learn a lot from sitting down and doing a worksheet might find themselves in academic trouble simply because their homework is not appropriately designed for them.
As you can see, there are a lot of varying views on the necessity and even helpfulness of homework, especially for children, pre-teens, and early adolescents. What you should take away from the information above is that not all homework is created equal; ideally, every learning experience you engage in should be meaningful and include components that cater to various learning styles.
Have Your Say!
What do you think about homework? Comment and let us know!
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