How Much Is Too Much Homework?
Over the last few years, many questions have been raised about the amount of homework that schools should be giving to their students. Parents have also started to wonder if this is required as they see their kids come from school and start working on homework and assignments.
The answer depends on the quality and the intentions behind the homework and assignments. Let’s delve a little deep and understand this.
What Benefits does Homework Offer Students?
It is not without reason that schools and teachers send students back home with homework after classes. The main objective is to create a mechanism where students recollect, review, and practice what was taught in class. Homework and assignments have shown that by enabling this reinforced learning, students perform better during exams and retain this knowledge for a longer time.
Besides, by completing their homework on time, students feel responsible for their actions. In the course of planning and completing their homework, they learn important life skills like time management and prepares them for having a problem-solving mentality.
For parents, it provides an opportunity to get involved in their children’s academic progression and creates an avenue to interact with teachers.
Challenges Faced by Educators While Giving Homework
The idea of giving homework is to make students practice more and become perfect. To make students perfect, the homework has to challenge them. This is where it becomes tricky as teachers cannot monitor or help their students as they do it from home. For homework to become useful, it has to be done right. This may not be possible as students tend to make mistakes and these need to be immediately corrected else the very idea of reinforcement will get lost and only wrong information is being reinforced!
Homework has to be well designed and take a middle path on how challenging it is. If not designed well, it will only lead to a situation where parents are torn between supporting their children and the teachers. Supporting the children on the usefulness of homework will mean that the teacher’s thought process is undermined. At the same time by supporting a teacher for homework that isn’t useful, will put parents in a bad spot. This creates an unwanted battlefield at home between the parents and children.
So How Much Is Too Much Homework?
A trait of good homework should be to challenge the students and make them understand the concepts taught in the class but it shouldn’t be so hard to become a discouraging factor. Only when homework is completed on time it creates a lot of positive vibes for a student.
By receiving immediate feedback from students, educators can strike a balance between the homework to be challenging and at the same time not so hard. If homework is designed not to practice a skill, teachers can be innovative and leverage the materials available on the internet to encourage them to watch educational videos and get feedback the very next day in class.
Another way to make students feel less overwhelmed about homework is to provide additional time to submit. This will create time for those students who work and study or those with other commitments. Students can also look for homework answers online to get their assignments done faster.
Educators must bear in mind that early childhood is when kids will be more creative. So homework must be designed to facilitate opportunities for kids to be creative and nurture confidence and resilience, which are major traits of childhood.