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The Pros and Cons of Homework

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Homework is a word that most students dread hearing. After hours upon hours of sitting in class , the last thing we want is more schoolwork over our precious weekends. While it’s known to be a staple of traditional schooling, homework has also become a rather divise topic. Some feel as though homework is a necessary part of school, while others believe that the time could be better invested. Should students have homework? Have a closer look into the arguments on both sides to decide for yourself.

A college student completely swamped with homework.

Photo by  energepic.com  from  Pexels

Why should students have homework, 1. homework encourages practice.

Many people believe that one of the positive effects of homework is that it encourages the discipline of practice. While it may be time consuming and boring compared to other activities, repetition is needed to get better at skills. Homework helps make concepts more clear, and gives students more opportunities when starting their career .

2. Homework Gets Parents Involved

Homework can be something that gets parents involved in their children’s lives if the environment is a healthy one. A parent helping their child with homework makes them take part in their academic success, and allows for the parent to keep up with what the child is doing in school. It can also be a chance to connect together.

3. Homework Teaches Time Management

Homework is much more than just completing the assigned tasks. Homework can develop time management skills , forcing students to plan their time and make sure that all of their homework assignments are done on time. By learning to manage their time, students also practice their problem-solving skills and independent thinking. One of the positive effects of homework is that it forces decision making and compromises to be made.

4. Homework Opens A Bridge Of Communication

Homework creates a connection between the student, the teacher, the school, and the parents. It allows everyone to get to know each other better, and parents can see where their children are struggling. In the same sense, parents can also see where their children are excelling. Homework in turn can allow for a better, more targeted educational plan for the student.

5. Homework Allows For More Learning Time

Homework allows for more time to complete the learning process. School hours are not always enough time for students to really understand core concepts, and homework can counter the effects of time shortages, benefiting students in the long run, even if they can’t see it in the moment.

6. Homework Reduces Screen Time

Many students in North America spend far too many hours watching TV. If they weren’t in school, these numbers would likely increase even more. Although homework is usually undesired, it encourages better study habits and discourages spending time in front of the TV. Homework can be seen as another extracurricular activity, and many families already invest a lot of time and money in different clubs and lessons to fill up their children’s extra time. Just like extracurricular activities, homework can be fit into one’s schedule.

A female student who doesn’t want to do homework.

The Other Side: Why Homework Is Bad

1. homework encourages a sedentary lifestyle.

Should students have homework? Well, that depends on where you stand. There are arguments both for the advantages and the disadvantages of homework.

While classroom time is important, playground time is just as important. If children are given too much homework, they won’t have enough playtime, which can impact their social development and learning. Studies have found that those who get more play get better grades in school , as it can help them pay closer attention in the classroom.

Children are already sitting long hours in the classroom, and homework assignments only add to these hours. Sedentary lifestyles can be dangerous and can cause health problems such as obesity. Homework takes away from time that could be spent investing in physical activity.

2. Homework Isn’t Healthy In Every Home

While many people that think homes are a beneficial environment for children to learn, not all homes provide a healthy environment, and there may be very little investment from parents. Some parents do not provide any kind of support or homework help, and even if they would like to, due to personal barriers, they sometimes cannot. Homework can create friction between children and their parents, which is one of the reasons why homework is bad .

3. Homework Adds To An Already Full-Time Job

School is already a full-time job for students, as they generally spend over 6 hours each day in class. Students also often have extracurricular activities such as sports, music, or art that are just as important as their traditional courses. Adding on extra hours to all of these demands is a lot for children to manage, and prevents students from having extra time to themselves for a variety of creative endeavors. Homework prevents self discovery and having the time to learn new skills outside of the school system. This is one of the main disadvantages of homework.

4. Homework Has Not Been Proven To Provide Results

Endless surveys have found that homework creates a negative attitude towards school, and homework has not been found to be linked to a higher level of academic success.

The positive effects of homework have not been backed up enough. While homework may help some students improve in specific subjects, if they have outside help there is no real proof that homework makes for improvements.

It can be a challenge to really enforce the completion of homework, and students can still get decent grades without doing their homework. Extra school time does not necessarily mean better grades — quality must always come before quantity.

Accurate practice when it comes to homework simply isn’t reliable. Homework could even cause opposite effects if misunderstood, especially since the reliance is placed on the student and their parents — one of the major reasons as to why homework is bad. Many students would rather cheat in class to avoid doing their homework at home, and children often just copy off of each other or from what they read on the internet.

5. Homework Assignments Are Overdone

The general agreement is that students should not be given more than 10 minutes a day per grade level. What this means is that a first grader should be given a maximum of 10 minutes of homework, while a second grader receives 20 minutes, etc. Many students are given a lot more homework than the recommended amount, however.

On average, college students spend as much as 3 hours per night on homework . By giving too much homework, it can increase stress levels and lead to burn out. This in turn provides an opposite effect when it comes to academic success.

The pros and cons of homework are both valid, and it seems as though the question of ‘‘should students have homework?’ is not a simple, straightforward one. Parents and teachers often are found to be clashing heads, while the student is left in the middle without much say.

It’s important to understand all the advantages and disadvantages of homework, taking both perspectives into conversation to find a common ground. At the end of the day, everyone’s goal is the success of the student.

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20 Pros and Cons of Homework

Homework. It’s a word that sends a shudder down the spine of students and parents alike.

It is also a question that has become divisive. Some people feel that homework is an effective way to reinforce the concepts that were learned at school. Others feel like the time that homework demands would be better spent with a meaningful activity that brings the family together.

Is homework important? Is it necessary? Or is the added stress that homework places on students and parents doing more harm than good? Here are some of the key pros and cons to discuss.

List of the Pros of Homework

1. It encourages the discipline of practice. Repeating the same problems over and over can be boring and difficult, but it also reinforces the practice of discipline. To get better at a skill, repetition is often necessary. You get better with each repetition. By having homework completed every night, especially with a difficult subject, the concepts become easier to understand. That gives the student an advantage later on in life when seeking a vocational career.

2. It gets parents involved with a child’s life. Looking at Common Core math can be somewhat bewildering to parents. If you see the math problem 5×3 expressed as an addition problem, 5+5+5 seems like the right answer. The correct answer, however, would be 3+3+3+3+3. By bringing homework to do, students can engage their learning process with their parents so everyone can be involved. Many parents actually want homework sent so they can see what their children are being taught in the classroom.

3. It teaches time management skills. Homework goes beyond completing a task. It forces children (and parents, to some extent) to develop time management skills. Schedules must be organized to ensure that all tasks can be completed during the day. This creates independent thinking and develops problem-solving skills. It encourages research skills. It also puts parents and children into a position where positive decision-making skills must be developed.

4. Homework creates a communication network. Teachers rarely see into the family lives of their students. Parents rarely see the classroom lives of their children. Homework is a bridge that opens lines of communication between the school, the teacher, and the parent. This allows everyone to get to know one another better. It helps teachers understand the needs of their students better.

It allows parents to find out their child’s strengths and weaknesses. Together, an educational plan can be developed that encourages the best possible learning environment.

5. It allows for a comfortable place to study. Classrooms have evolved over the years to be a warmer and welcoming environment, but there is nothing like the comfort that is felt at home or in a safe space. By encouraging studies where a child feels the most comfortable, it is possible to retain additional information that may get lost within the standard classroom environment.

6. It provides more time to complete the learning process. The time allotted for each area of study in school, especially in K-12, is often limited to 1 hour or less per day. That is not always enough time for students to be able to grasp core concepts of that material. By creating specific homework assignments which address these deficiencies, it becomes possible to counter the effects of the time shortages. That can benefit students greatly over time.

7. It reduces screen time. On the average school night, a student in the US might get 3-4 hours of screen time in per day. When that student isn’t in school, that figure doubles to 7-8 hours of screen time. Homework might be unwanted and disliked, but it does encourage better study habits. It discourages time being spent in front of the television or playing games on a mobile device. That, in turn, may discourage distracting habits from forming that can take away from the learning process in the future.

8. It can be treated like any other extracurricular activity. Some families over-extend themselves on extracurricular activities. Students can easily have more than 40 hours per week, from clubs to sports, that fall outside of regular school hours. Homework can be treated as one of these activities, fitting into the schedule where there is extra time. As an added benefit, some homework can even be completed on the way to or from some activities.

List of the Cons of Homework

1. Children benefit from playing. Being in a classroom can be a good thing, but so can being on a playground. With too much homework, a child doesn’t have enough time to play and that can impact their learning and social development. Low levels of play are associated with lower academic achievement levels, lower safety awareness, less character development, and lower overall health.

2. It encourages a sedentary lifestyle. Long homework assignments require long periods of sitting. A sedentary lifestyle has numerous direct associations with premature death as children age into adults. Obesity levels are already at or near record highs in many communities. Homework may reinforce certain skills and encourage knowledge retention, but it may come at a high price.

3. Not every home is a beneficial environment. There are some homes that are highly invested into their children. Parents may be involved in every stage of homework or there may be access to tutors that can explain difficult concepts. In other homes, there may be little or no education investment into the child. Some parents push the responsibility of teaching off on the teacher and provide no homework support at all.

Sometimes parents may wish to be involved and support their child, but there are barriers in place that prevent this from happening. The bottom line is this: no every home life is equal.

4. 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, musicals, 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.

5. There is no evidence that homework creates improvements. Survey after survey has found that the only thing that homework does is create a negative attitude toward schooling and education in general. Homework is not associated with a higher level of academic achievement on a national scale. It may help some students who struggle with certain subjects, if they have access to a knowledgeable tutor or parent, but on a community level, there is no evidence that shows improvements are gained.

6. It discourages creative endeavors. If a student is spending 1 hour each day on homework, that’s an hour they are not spending pursuing something that is important to them. Students might like to play video games or watch TV, but homework takes time away from learning an instrument, painting, or developing photography skills as well. Although some homework can involve creative skills, that usually isn’t the case.

7. Homework is difficult to enforce. Some students just don’t care about homework. They can achieve adequate grades without doing it, so they choose not to do it. There is no level of motivation that a parent or teacher can create that inspires some students to get involved with homework. There is no denying the fact that homework requires a certain amount of effort. Sometimes a child just doesn’t want to put in that effort.

8. Extra time in school does not equate to better grades. Students in the US spend more than 100 hours of extra time in school already compared to high-performing countries around the world, but that has not closed the educational gap between those countries and the United States. In some educational areas, the US is even falling in global rankings despite the extra time that students are spending in school. When it comes to homework or any other form of learning, quality is much more important than quantity.

9. Accurate practice may not be possible. If homework is assigned, there is a reliance on the student, their parents, or their guardians to locate resources that can help them understand the content. Homework is often about practice, but if the core concepts of that information are not understood or inaccurately understood, then the results are the opposite of what is intended. If inaccurate practice is performed, it becomes necessary for the teacher to first correct the issue and then reteach it, which prolongs the learning process.

10. 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.

11. Too much homework is often assigned to students. There is a general agreement that students should be assigned no more than 10 minutes of homework per day, per grade level. That means a first grader should not be assigned more than 10 minutes of homework per night. Yet for the average first grader in US public schools, they come home with 20 minutes of homework and then are asked to complete 20 minutes of reading on top of that. That means some students are completing 4x more homework than recommended every night.

At the same time, the amount of time children spent playing outdoors has decreased by 40% over the past 30 years.

For high school students, it is even worse at high performing schools in the US where 90% of graduates go onto college, the average amount of homework assigned per night was 3 hours per student.

12. Homework is often geared toward benchmarks. Homework is often assigned to improve test scores. Although this can provide positive outcomes, including better study skills or habits, the fact is that when children are tired, they do not absorb much information. When children have more homework than recommended, test scores actually go down. Stress levels go up. Burnout on the curriculum occurs.

The results for many students, according to research from Ruben Fernandez-Alonso in the Journal of Educational Psychology, is a decrease in grades instead of an increase.

The pros and cons of homework are admittedly all over the map. Many parents and teachers follow their personal perspectives and create learning environments around them. When parents and teachers clash on homework, the student is often left in the middle of that tug of war. By discussing these key points, each side can work to find some common ground so our children can benefit for a clear, precise message.

Quantity may be important, but quality must be the priority for homework if a student is going to be successful.

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27 Top Homework Pros and Cons

homework pros and cons

There are both pros and cons of homework. This makes whether schools should assign homework a great debating topic for students.

On the side of the pros, homework is beneficial because it can be great for helping students get through their required coursework and reinforce required knowledge. But it also interferes with life outside of school.

Key arguments for homework include the fact it gives students structure, improves their learning, and improves parent-teacher relationships.

Arguments for the cons of homework include the fact it interferes with playtime and causes stress to children, leading to arguments that homework should be banned .

Pros and Cons of Homework (Table Summary)

Pros of homework, 1. homework teaches discipline and habit.

Discipline and habit are two soft skills that children need to develop so they can succeed in life.

Regular daily homework is a simple way that discipline and habit are reinforced. Teachers can talk to students about what they do when they get home from school.

They might develop a habit like getting changed into a new set of clothes, having an afternoon snack, then getting out their homework.

Teachers can also help students visualize these habits and disciplines by talking about where they will do their homework (kitchen table?) and when .

2. Homework helps parents know what’s being learned in class

Parents often appreciate being kept in the loop about what is going on in their child’s classroom. Homework is great for this!

Teachers can set homework based on the current unit of work in the classroom. If the students are learning about dinosaurs, the homework can be a task on dinosaurs.

This helps the teachers to show the parents the valuable learning that’s taking place, and allows parents to feel comfortable that the teacher is doing a great job.

3. Homework teaches time management

Children often have a wide range of after school activities to undertake. They need to develop the skill of managing all these activities to fit homework in.

At school, children’s time is closely managed and controlled. Every lesson ends and begins with a bell or a teacher command.

At some point, children need to learn to manage their own time. Homework is an easy way to start refining this important soft skill.

4. Homework gives students self-paced learning time

At school, a lesson has a clear beginning and end. Students who are struggling may be interrupted and need more time. Homework allows them to work on these tasks at their own pace.

When I was studying math in high school, I never got my work done in time. I understood concepts slower than my peers, and I needed more time to reinforce concepts.

Homework was my chance to keep up, by studying at my own pace.

5. Homework can reduce screen time

Paper-based homework can take students away from their afternoon cartoons and video games and get them working on something of more value.

Screen time is one of the biggest concerns for educators and parents in the 21 st Century. Children spend approximately 5 to 7 hours in front of screens per day.

While screens aren’t all bad, children generally spend more time at screens than is necessary. Homework tasks such as collecting things from the yard or interviewing grandparents gets kids away from screens and into more active activities.

6. Homework gives students productive afternoon activities

Too often, children get home from school and switch off their brains by watching cartoons or playing video games. Homework can be more productive.

Good homework should get students actively thinking. A teacher can set homework that involves creating a product, conducting interviews with family, or writing a story based on things being learned in class.

But even homework that involves repetition of math and spelling tasks can be far more productive than simply watching television.

7. Homework reinforces information taught in class

For difficult tasks, students often need to be exposed to content over and over again until they reach mastery of the topic .

To do this, sometimes you need to do old-fashioned repetition of tasks. Take, for example, algebra. Students will need to repeat the process over and over again so that they will instinctively know how to complete the task when they sit their standardized test.

Of course, the teacher needs to teach and reinforce these foundational skills at school before independent homework practice takes place.

8. Homework helps motivated students to get ahead

Many students who have set themselves the goal of coming first in their class want to do homework to get an advantage over their peers.

Students who want to excel should not be stopped from doing this. If they enjoy homework and it makes them smarter or better at a task, then they should be allowed to do this.

9. Homework gives parents and children time together

When a parent helps their child with homework (by educating and quizzing them, not cheating!), they get a chance to bond.

Working together to complete a task can be good for the relationship between the parent and the child. The parents can also feel good that they’re supporting the child to become more educated.

10. Homework improves parent-teacher relationships

Parents get an inside look at what’s happening at school to improve their trust with the teacher, while also helping the teacher do their job.

Trust between parents and teachers is very important. Parents want to know the teacher is working hard to support students and help them learn. By looking at their children’s homework, they get a good idea of what’s going on in the classroom.

The parent can also feel good about helping the teacher’s mission by sitting with the child during homework and helping to reinforce what’s been learned at school.

11. Homework helps teachers get through the crowded curriculum

Teachers are increasingly asked to teach more and more content each year. Homework can be helpful in making sure it all gets done.

Decades ago, teachers had time to dedicate lessons to repeating and practicing content learned. Today, they’re under pressure to teach one thing then quickly move onto the next. We call this phenomenon the “crowded curriculum”.

Today, teachers may need to teach the core skills in class then ask students to go home and practice what’s been taught to fast-track learning.

12. Homework provides spaced repetition for long-term memorization

Spaced repetition is a strategy that involves quizzing students intermittently on things learned in previous weeks and months.

For example, if students learned division in January, they may forget about it by June. But if the teacher provides division questions for homework in January, March, and May, then the students always keep that knowledge of how to do division in their mind.

Spaced repetition theory states that regularly requiring students to recall information that’s been pushed to the back of their mind can help, over time, commit that information to their long-term memory and prevent long-term forgetting.

13. Homework supports a flipped learning model to make the most of time with the teacher

Flipped learning is a model of education where students do preparation before class so they get to class prepared to learn.

Examples of flipped learning include pre-teaching vocabulary (e.g. giving children new words to learn for homework that they will use in a future in-class lesson), and asking students to watch preparatory videos before class.

This model of homework isn’t about reinforcing things learned in class, but learning things before class to be more prepared for lessons.

14. Homework improves student achievement

An influential review of the literature on homework by Mazano and Pickering (2007) found that homework does improve student achievement.

Another review of the literature by Cooper, Robinson and Patall (2006) similarly found that homework improves achievement. In this review, the authors highlighted that homework appeared more beneficial for high school students’ grades than elementary school students’ grades.

Several progressive education critics , especially Alfie Kohn , have claimed that homework does not help student grades. We have not found the critics’ evidence to be as compelling.

15. Homework helps the education system keep up with other countries’ systems

All nations are competing with one another to have the best education system (measured by standardized tests ). If other countries are assigning homework and your country isn’t, your country will be at a disadvantage.

The main way education systems are compared is the OECD ranking of education systems. This ranking compared standardized test scores on major subjects.

Western nations have been slipping behind Asian nations for several decades. Many Asian education systems have a culture of assigning a lot of homework. To keep up, America may also need to assign homework and encourage their kids to do more homework.

See Also: Homework Statistics List

Cons of Homework

1. homework interferes with play time.

Play-based learning is some of the best learning that can possibly occurs. When children go home from school, the play they do before sunset is hugely beneficial for their development.

Homework can prevent children from playing. Instead, they’re stuck inside repeating tasks on standardized homework sheets.

Of course, if there is no homework, parents would have to make sure children are engaging in beneficial play as well, rather than simply watching TV.

2. Homework interferes with extracurricular activities

After school, many children want to participate in extracurricular activities like sporting and community events.

However, if too much homework is assigned to learners, their parents may not be able to sign them up to co-curricular activities in the school or extracurricular activities outside of the school. This can prevent students from having well-rounded holistic development.

3. Homework discourages students from going outside and getting exercise

Homework is usually an indoors activity. Usually, teachers will assign spelling, math, or science tasks to be repeated through the week on paper or a computer.

But children need time to go outside and get exercise. The CDC recommends children ages 6 to 17 need 60 minutes of moderate to intense exercise per day.

Unfortunately, being stuck indoors may prevent children from getting that much needed exercise for well-rounded development.

4. Homework leads to unsupervised and unsupportive learning

When students get stuck on a task at school, the teacher is there to help. But when students are stuck on a homework task, no support is available.

This leads to a situation where students’ learning and development is harmed. Furthermore, those students who do understand the task can go ahead and get more homework practice done while struggling students can’t progress because the teacher isn’t there to help them through their hurdles.

Often, it’s down to parents to pick up the challenge of teaching their children during homework time. Unfortunately, not all students have parents nearby to help them during homework time.

5. Homework can encourage cheating

When children study without supervision, they have the opportunity to cheat without suffering consequences.

They could, for example, copy their sibling’s homework or use the internet to find answers.

Worse, some parents may help their child to cheat or do the homework for the child. In these cases, homework has no benefit of the child but may teach them bad and unethical habits.

6. Homework contributes to a culture of poor work-life balance

Homework instils a corporate attitude that prioritizes work above everything else. It prepares students for a social norm where you do work for your job even when you’re off the clock.

Students will grow up thinking it’s normal to clock off from their job, go home, and continue to check emails and complete work they didn’t get done during the day.

This sort of culture is bad for society. It interferes with family and recreation time and encourages bosses to behave like they’re in charge of your whole life.

7. Homework discourages children from taking up hobbies

There is an argument to be made that children need spare time so they can learn about what they like and don’t like.

If students have spare time after school, they could fill it up with hobbies. The student can think about what they enjoy (playing with dolls, riding bikes, singing, writing stories).

Downtime encourages people to develop hobbies. Students need this downtime, and homework can interfere with this.

8. Homework creates unfairness between children with parents helping and those who don’t

At school, students generally have a level playing field. They are all in the same classroom with the same resources and the same teacher. At home, it’s a different story.

Some children have parents, siblings, and internet to rely upon. Meanwhile, others have nothing but themselves and a pen.

Those children who are lucky enough to have parents helping out can get a significant advantage over their peers, causing unfairness and inequalities that are not of their own making.

9. Homework causes stress and anxiety

In a study by Galloway, Connor and Pope (2013), they found that 56% of students identified homework as the greatest cause of stress in their lives.

Stress among young people can impact their happiness and mental health. Furthermore, there is an argument to “let kids be kids”. We have a whole life of work and pressure ahead of us. Childhood is a time to be enjoyed without the pressures of life.

10. Homework is often poor-quality work

Teachers will often assign homework that is the less important work and doesn’t have a clear goal.

Good teachers know that a lesson needs to be planned-out with a beginning, middle and end. There usually should be formative assessment as well, which is assessment of students as they learn (rather than just at the end).

But homework doesn’t have the structure of a good lesson. It’s repetition of information already learned, which is a behaviorist learning model that is now outdated for many tasks.

11. Homework is solitary learning

Most education theorists today believe that the best learning occurs in social situations.

Sociocultural learning requires students to express their thoughts and opinions and listen to other people’s ideas. This helps them improve and refine their own thinking through dialogue.

But homework usually takes place alone at the kitchen table. Students don’t have anyone to talk with about what they’re doing, meaning their learning is limited.

12. Homework widens social inequality

Homework can advantage wealthier students and disadvantage poorer students.

In Kralovec and Buell’s (2001) book The End of Homework: How Homework Disrupts Families, Overburdens Children, and Limits Learning , the authors argue that poorer students are less likely to have the resources to complete their homework properly.

For example, they might not have the pens, paper, and drawing implements to complete a paper task. Similarly, they might not have the computer, internet connection, or even books to do appropriate research at home.

Parents in poorer households also often work shift work and multiple jobs meaning they have less time to help their children with their homework.

Homework can be both good and bad – there are both advantages and disadvantages of homework. In general, it’s often the case that it depends on the type of homework that is assigned. Well-planned homework used in moderation and agreed upon by teachers, parents and students can be helpful. But other homework can cause serious stress, inequality, and lifestyle imbalance for students.

Cooper, H., Robinson, J. C., & Patall, E. A. (2006). Does homework improve academic achievement? A synthesis of research, 1987–2003.  Review of educational research ,  76 (1), 1-62.

Galloway, M., Conner, J., & Pope, D. (2013). Nonacademic effects of homework in privileged, high-performing high schools.  The journal of experimental education ,  81 (4), 490-510. Doi: https://doi.org/10.1080/00220973.2012.745469

Kralovec, E., & Buell, J. (2001).  The end of homework: How homework disrupts families, overburdens children, and limits learning . Beacon Press.

Pressman, R. M., Sugarman, D. B., Nemon, M. L., Desjarlais, J., Owens, J. A., & Schettini-Evans, A. (2015). Homework and family stress: With consideration of parents’ self confidence, educational level, and cultural background.  The American Journal of Family Therapy ,  43 (4), 297-313. Doi: https://doi.org/10.1080/01926187.2015.1061407

Ren, H., Zhou, Z., Liu, W., Wang, X., & Yin, Z. (2017). Excessive homework, inadequate sleep, physical inactivity and screen viewing time are major contributors to high paediatric obesity.  Acta Paediatrica ,  106 (1), 120-127. Doi: https://doi.org/10.1111/apa.13640

Yeo, S. C., Tan, J., Lo, J. C., Chee, M. W., & Gooley, J. J. (2020). Associations of time spent on homework or studying with nocturnal sleep behavior and depression symptoms in adolescents from Singapore.  Sleep Health ,  6 (6), 758-766. Doi: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sleh.2020.04.011

Chris

Chris Drew (PhD)

Dr. Chris Drew is the founder of the Helpful Professor. He holds a PhD in education and has published over 20 articles in scholarly journals. He is the former editor of the Journal of Learning Development in Higher Education. [Image Descriptor: Photo of Chris]

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i love this it helped me a lot in class and it can be used more around the United States of amarica

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Student Opinion

Should We Get Rid of Homework?

Some educators are pushing to get rid of homework. Would that be a good thing?

what are the pros and cons for homework

By Jeremy Engle and Michael Gonchar

Do you like doing homework? Do you think it has benefited you educationally?

Has homework ever helped you practice a difficult skill — in math, for example — until you mastered it? Has it helped you learn new concepts in history or science? Has it helped to teach you life skills, such as independence and responsibility? Or, have you had a more negative experience with homework? Does it stress you out, numb your brain from busywork or actually make you fall behind in your classes?

Should we get rid of homework?

In “ The Movement to End Homework Is Wrong, ” published in July, the Times Opinion writer Jay Caspian Kang argues that homework may be imperfect, but it still serves an important purpose in school. The essay begins:

Do students really need to do their homework? As a parent and a former teacher, I have been pondering this question for quite a long time. The teacher side of me can acknowledge that there were assignments I gave out to my students that probably had little to no academic value. But I also imagine that some of my students never would have done their basic reading if they hadn’t been trained to complete expected assignments, which would have made the task of teaching an English class nearly impossible. As a parent, I would rather my daughter not get stuck doing the sort of pointless homework I would occasionally assign, but I also think there’s a lot of value in saying, “Hey, a lot of work you’re going to end up doing in your life is pointless, so why not just get used to it?” I certainly am not the only person wondering about the value of homework. Recently, the sociologist Jessica McCrory Calarco and the mathematics education scholars Ilana Horn and Grace Chen published a paper, “ You Need to Be More Responsible: The Myth of Meritocracy and Teachers’ Accounts of Homework Inequalities .” They argued that while there’s some evidence that homework might help students learn, it also exacerbates inequalities and reinforces what they call the “meritocratic” narrative that says kids who do well in school do so because of “individual competence, effort and responsibility.” The authors believe this meritocratic narrative is a myth and that homework — math homework in particular — further entrenches the myth in the minds of teachers and their students. Calarco, Horn and Chen write, “Research has highlighted inequalities in students’ homework production and linked those inequalities to differences in students’ home lives and in the support students’ families can provide.”

Mr. Kang argues:

But there’s a defense of homework that doesn’t really have much to do with class mobility, equality or any sense of reinforcing the notion of meritocracy. It’s one that became quite clear to me when I was a teacher: Kids need to learn how to practice things. Homework, in many cases, is the only ritualized thing they have to do every day. Even if we could perfectly equalize opportunity in school and empower all students not to be encumbered by the weight of their socioeconomic status or ethnicity, I’m not sure what good it would do if the kids didn’t know how to do something relentlessly, over and over again, until they perfected it. Most teachers know that type of progress is very difficult to achieve inside the classroom, regardless of a student’s background, which is why, I imagine, Calarco, Horn and Chen found that most teachers weren’t thinking in a structural inequalities frame. Holistic ideas of education, in which learning is emphasized and students can explore concepts and ideas, are largely for the types of kids who don’t need to worry about class mobility. A defense of rote practice through homework might seem revanchist at this moment, but if we truly believe that schools should teach children lessons that fall outside the meritocracy, I can’t think of one that matters more than the simple satisfaction of mastering something that you were once bad at. That takes homework and the acknowledgment that sometimes a student can get a question wrong and, with proper instruction, eventually get it right.

Students, read the entire article, then tell us:

Should we get rid of homework? Why, or why not?

Is homework an outdated, ineffective or counterproductive tool for learning? Do you agree with the authors of the paper that homework is harmful and worsens inequalities that exist between students’ home circumstances?

Or do you agree with Mr. Kang that homework still has real educational value?

When you get home after school, how much homework will you do? Do you think the amount is appropriate, too much or too little? Is homework, including the projects and writing assignments you do at home, an important part of your learning experience? Or, in your opinion, is it not a good use of time? Explain.

In these letters to the editor , one reader makes a distinction between elementary school and high school:

Homework’s value is unclear for younger students. But by high school and college, homework is absolutely essential for any student who wishes to excel. There simply isn’t time to digest Dostoyevsky if you only ever read him in class.

What do you think? How much does grade level matter when discussing the value of homework?

Is there a way to make homework more effective?

If you were a teacher, would you assign homework? What kind of assignments would you give and why?

Want more writing prompts? You can find all of our questions in our Student Opinion column . Teachers, check out this guide to learn how you can incorporate them into your classroom.

Students 13 and older in the United States and Britain, and 16 and older elsewhere, are invited to comment. All comments are moderated by the Learning Network staff, but please keep in mind that once your comment is accepted, it will be made public.

Jeremy Engle joined The Learning Network as a staff editor in 2018 after spending more than 20 years as a classroom humanities and documentary-making teacher, professional developer and curriculum designer working with students and teachers across the country. More about Jeremy Engle

Are You Down With or Done With Homework?

  • Posted January 17, 2012
  • By Lory Hough

Sign: Are you down with or done with homework?

The debate over how much schoolwork students should be doing at home has flared again, with one side saying it's too much, the other side saying in our competitive world, it's just not enough.

It was a move that doesn't happen very often in American public schools: The principal got rid of homework.

This past September, Stephanie Brant, principal of Gaithersburg Elementary School in Gaithersburg, Md., decided that instead of teachers sending kids home with math worksheets and spelling flash cards, students would instead go home and read. Every day for 30 minutes, more if they had time or the inclination, with parents or on their own.

"I knew this would be a big shift for my community," she says. But she also strongly believed it was a necessary one. Twenty-first-century learners, especially those in elementary school, need to think critically and understand their own learning — not spend night after night doing rote homework drills.

Brant's move may not be common, but she isn't alone in her questioning. The value of doing schoolwork at home has gone in and out of fashion in the United States among educators, policymakers, the media, and, more recently, parents. As far back as the late 1800s, with the rise of the Progressive Era, doctors such as Joseph Mayer Rice began pushing for a limit on what he called "mechanical homework," saying it caused childhood nervous conditions and eyestrain. Around that time, the then-influential Ladies Home Journal began publishing a series of anti-homework articles, stating that five hours of brain work a day was "the most we should ask of our children," and that homework was an intrusion on family life. In response, states like California passed laws abolishing homework for students under a certain age.

But, as is often the case with education, the tide eventually turned. After the Russians launched the Sputnik satellite in 1957, a space race emerged, and, writes Brian Gill in the journal Theory Into Practice, "The homework problem was reconceived as part of a national crisis; the U.S. was losing the Cold War because Russian children were smarter." Many earlier laws limiting homework were abolished, and the longterm trend toward less homework came to an end.

The debate re-emerged a decade later when parents of the late '60s and '70s argued that children should be free to play and explore — similar anti-homework wellness arguments echoed nearly a century earlier. By the early-1980s, however, the pendulum swung again with the publication of A Nation at Risk , which blamed poor education for a "rising tide of mediocrity." Students needed to work harder, the report said, and one way to do this was more homework.

For the most part, this pro-homework sentiment is still going strong today, in part because of mandatory testing and continued economic concerns about the nation's competitiveness. Many believe that today's students are falling behind their peers in places like Korea and Finland and are paying more attention to Angry Birds than to ancient Babylonia.

But there are also a growing number of Stephanie Brants out there, educators and parents who believe that students are stressed and missing out on valuable family time. Students, they say, particularly younger students who have seen a rise in the amount of take-home work and already put in a six- to nine-hour "work" day, need less, not more homework.

Who is right? Are students not working hard enough or is homework not working for them? Here's where the story gets a little tricky: It depends on whom you ask and what research you're looking at. As Cathy Vatterott, the author of Rethinking Homework , points out, "Homework has generated enough research so that a study can be found to support almost any position, as long as conflicting studies are ignored." Alfie Kohn, author of The Homework Myth and a strong believer in eliminating all homework, writes that, "The fact that there isn't anything close to unanimity among experts belies the widespread assumption that homework helps." At best, he says, homework shows only an association, not a causal relationship, with academic achievement. In other words, it's hard to tease out how homework is really affecting test scores and grades. Did one teacher give better homework than another? Was one teacher more effective in the classroom? Do certain students test better or just try harder?

"It is difficult to separate where the effect of classroom teaching ends," Vatterott writes, "and the effect of homework begins."

Putting research aside, however, much of the current debate over homework is focused less on how homework affects academic achievement and more on time. Parents in particular have been saying that the amount of time children spend in school, especially with afterschool programs, combined with the amount of homework given — as early as kindergarten — is leaving students with little time to run around, eat dinner with their families, or even get enough sleep.

Certainly, for some parents, homework is a way to stay connected to their children's learning. But for others, homework creates a tug-of-war between parents and children, says Liz Goodenough, M.A.T.'71, creator of a documentary called Where Do the Children Play?

"Ideally homework should be about taking something home, spending a few curious and interesting moments in which children might engage with parents, and then getting that project back to school — an organizational triumph," she says. "A nag-free activity could engage family time: Ask a parent about his or her own childhood. Interview siblings."

Illustration by Jessica Esch

Instead, as the authors of The Case Against Homework write, "Homework overload is turning many of us into the types of parents we never wanted to be: nags, bribers, and taskmasters."

Leslie Butchko saw it happen a few years ago when her son started sixth grade in the Santa Monica-Malibu (Calif.) United School District. She remembers him getting two to four hours of homework a night, plus weekend and vacation projects. He was overwhelmed and struggled to finish assignments, especially on nights when he also had an extracurricular activity.

"Ultimately, we felt compelled to have Bobby quit karate — he's a black belt — to allow more time for homework," she says. And then, with all of their attention focused on Bobby's homework, she and her husband started sending their youngest to his room so that Bobby could focus. "One day, my younger son gave us 15-minute coupons as a present for us to use to send him to play in the back room. … It was then that we realized there had to be something wrong with the amount of homework we were facing."

Butchko joined forces with another mother who was having similar struggles and ultimately helped get the homework policy in her district changed, limiting homework on weekends and holidays, setting time guidelines for daily homework, and broadening the definition of homework to include projects and studying for tests. As she told the school board at one meeting when the policy was first being discussed, "In closing, I just want to say that I had more free time at Harvard Law School than my son has in middle school, and that is not in the best interests of our children."

One barrier that Butchko had to overcome initially was convincing many teachers and parents that more homework doesn't necessarily equal rigor.

"Most of the parents that were against the homework policy felt that students need a large quantity of homework to prepare them for the rigorous AP classes in high school and to get them into Harvard," she says.

Stephanie Conklin, Ed.M.'06, sees this at Another Course to College, the Boston pilot school where she teaches math. "When a student is not completing [his or her] homework, parents usually are frustrated by this and agree with me that homework is an important part of their child's learning," she says.

As Timothy Jarman, Ed.M.'10, a ninth-grade English teacher at Eugene Ashley High School in Wilmington, N.C., says, "Parents think it is strange when their children are not assigned a substantial amount of homework."

That's because, writes Vatterott, in her chapter, "The Cult(ure) of Homework," the concept of homework "has become so engrained in U.S. culture that the word homework is part of the common vernacular."

These days, nightly homework is a given in American schools, writes Kohn.

"Homework isn't limited to those occasions when it seems appropriate and important. Most teachers and administrators aren't saying, 'It may be useful to do this particular project at home,'" he writes. "Rather, the point of departure seems to be, 'We've decided ahead of time that children will have to do something every night (or several times a week). … This commitment to the idea of homework in the abstract is accepted by the overwhelming majority of schools — public and private, elementary and secondary."

Brant had to confront this when she cut homework at Gaithersburg Elementary.

"A lot of my parents have this idea that homework is part of life. This is what I had to do when I was young," she says, and so, too, will our kids. "So I had to shift their thinking." She did this slowly, first by asking her teachers last year to really think about what they were sending home. And this year, in addition to forming a parent advisory group around the issue, she also holds events to answer questions.

Still, not everyone is convinced that homework as a given is a bad thing. "Any pursuit of excellence, be it in sports, the arts, or academics, requires hard work. That our culture finds it okay for kids to spend hours a day in a sport but not equal time on academics is part of the problem," wrote one pro-homework parent on the blog for the documentary Race to Nowhere , which looks at the stress American students are under. "Homework has always been an issue for parents and children. It is now and it was 20 years ago. I think when people decide to have children that it is their responsibility to educate them," wrote another.

And part of educating them, some believe, is helping them develop skills they will eventually need in adulthood. "Homework can help students develop study skills that will be of value even after they leave school," reads a publication on the U.S. Department of Education website called Homework Tips for Parents. "It can teach them that learning takes place anywhere, not just in the classroom. … It can foster positive character traits such as independence and responsibility. Homework can teach children how to manage time."

Annie Brown, Ed.M.'01, feels this is particularly critical at less affluent schools like the ones she has worked at in Boston, Cambridge, Mass., and Los Angeles as a literacy coach.

"It feels important that my students do homework because they will ultimately be competing for college placement and jobs with students who have done homework and have developed a work ethic," she says. "Also it will get them ready for independently taking responsibility for their learning, which will need to happen for them to go to college."

The problem with this thinking, writes Vatterott, is that homework becomes a way to practice being a worker.

"Which begs the question," she writes. "Is our job as educators to produce learners or workers?"

Slate magazine editor Emily Bazelon, in a piece about homework, says this makes no sense for younger kids.

"Why should we think that practicing homework in first grade will make you better at doing it in middle school?" she writes. "Doesn't the opposite seem equally plausible: that it's counterproductive to ask children to sit down and work at night before they're developmentally ready because you'll just make them tired and cross?"

Kohn writes in the American School Board Journal that this "premature exposure" to practices like homework (and sit-and-listen lessons and tests) "are clearly a bad match for younger children and of questionable value at any age." He calls it BGUTI: Better Get Used to It. "The logic here is that we have to prepare you for the bad things that are going to be done to you later … by doing them to you now."

According to a recent University of Michigan study, daily homework for six- to eight-year-olds increased on average from about 8 minutes in 1981 to 22 minutes in 2003. A review of research by Duke University Professor Harris Cooper found that for elementary school students, "the average correlation between time spent on homework and achievement … hovered around zero."

So should homework be eliminated? Of course not, say many Ed School graduates who are teaching. Not only would students not have time for essays and long projects, but also teachers would not be able to get all students to grade level or to cover critical material, says Brett Pangburn, Ed.M.'06, a sixth-grade English teacher at Excel Academy Charter School in Boston. Still, he says, homework has to be relevant.

"Kids need to practice the skills being taught in class, especially where, like the kids I teach at Excel, they are behind and need to catch up," he says. "Our results at Excel have demonstrated that kids can catch up and view themselves as in control of their academic futures, but this requires hard work, and homework is a part of it."

Ed School Professor Howard Gardner basically agrees.

"America and Americans lurch between too little homework in many of our schools to an excess of homework in our most competitive environments — Li'l Abner vs. Tiger Mother," he says. "Neither approach makes sense. Homework should build on what happens in class, consolidating skills and helping students to answer new questions."

So how can schools come to a happy medium, a way that allows teachers to cover everything they need while not overwhelming students? Conklin says she often gives online math assignments that act as labs and students have two or three days to complete them, including some in-class time. Students at Pangburn's school have a 50-minute silent period during regular school hours where homework can be started, and where teachers pull individual or small groups of students aside for tutoring, often on that night's homework. Afterschool homework clubs can help.

Some schools and districts have adapted time limits rather than nix homework completely, with the 10-minute per grade rule being the standard — 10 minutes a night for first-graders, 30 minutes for third-graders, and so on. (This remedy, however, is often met with mixed results since not all students work at the same pace.) Other schools offer an extended day that allows teachers to cover more material in school, in turn requiring fewer take-home assignments. And for others, like Stephanie Brant's elementary school in Maryland, more reading with a few targeted project assignments has been the answer.

"The routine of reading is so much more important than the routine of homework," she says. "Let's have kids reflect. You can still have the routine and you can still have your workspace, but now it's for reading. I often say to parents, if we can put a man on the moon, we can put a man or woman on Mars and that person is now a second-grader. We don't know what skills that person will need. At the end of the day, we have to feel confident that we're giving them something they can use on Mars."

Read a January 2014 update.

Homework Policy Still Going Strong

Illustration by Jessica Esch

Ed. Magazine

The magazine of the Harvard Graduate School of Education

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The Pros and Cons of Homework: What You Need to Know

Exploring the benefits and drawbacks of homework.

Homework has been a long-standing educational tradition, but it has also been a topic of debate. While some believe it reinforces learning , others argue that it adds unnecessary stress to students. In this article, we'll delve into the advantages and disadvantages of homework to provide a comprehensive understanding of its impact on students and their learning journey.

Whether you're a student, parent, or educator, understanding the pros and cons of homework can shed light on its effectiveness as a learning tool. Let's dive deep into the subject to uncover the truths and myths surrounding homework.

Homework, often seen as a mundane task, actually offers several unexpected advantages that contribute to a student's overall academic growth and personal development. Let's explore some of the lesser-known benefits of homework.

Missing a pro?

While homework has its merits, it also carries certain drawbacks that have sparked discussions about its efficacy in modern education. It's essential to weigh these disadvantages to understand the potential challenges associated with homework completion.

Missing a con?

The debate surrounding homework will likely persist, but a balanced understanding of its advantages and disadvantages is crucial for informed decision-making in educational settings. By recognizing the potential benefits and drawbacks of homework, educators and parents can strive to implement strategies that maximize its positive impact while mitigating its limitations.

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what are the pros and cons for homework

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Research Trends: Why Homework Should Be Balanced

Research suggests that while homework can be an effective learning tool, assigning too much can lower student performance and interfere with other important activities.

Girl working on her laptop at home on the dining room table

Homework: effective learning tool or waste of time?

Since the average high school student spends almost seven hours each week doing homework, it’s surprising that there’s no clear answer. Homework is generally recognized as an effective way to reinforce what students learn in class, but claims that it may cause more harm than good, especially for younger students, are common.

Here’s what the research says:

  • In general, homework has substantial benefits at the high school level, with decreased benefits for middle school students and few benefits for elementary students (Cooper, 1989; Cooper et al., 2006).
  • While assigning homework may have academic benefits, it can also cut into important personal and family time (Cooper et al., 2006).
  • Assigning too much homework can result in poor performance (Fernández-Alonso et al., 2015).
  • A student’s ability to complete homework may depend on factors that are outside their control (Cooper et al., 2006; OECD, 2014; Eren & Henderson, 2011).
  • The goal shouldn’t be to eliminate homework, but to make it authentic, meaningful, and engaging (Darling-Hammond & Ifill-Lynch, 2006).

Why Homework Should Be Balanced

Homework can boost learning, but doing too much can be detrimental. The National PTA and National Education Association support the “10-minute homework rule,” which recommends 10 minutes of homework per grade level, per night (10 minutes for first grade, 20 minutes for second grade, and so on, up to two hours for 12th grade) (Cooper, 2010). A recent study found that when middle school students were assigned more than 90–100 minutes of homework per day, their math and science scores began to decline (Fernández-Alonso, Suárez-Álvarez, & Muñiz, 2015). Giving students too much homework can lead to fatigue, stress, and a loss of interest in academics—something that we all want to avoid.

Homework Pros and Cons

Homework has many benefits, ranging from higher academic performance to improved study skills and stronger school-parent connections. However, it can also result in a loss of interest in academics, fatigue, and a loss of important personal and family time.

Grade Level Makes a Difference

Although the debate about homework generally falls in the “it works” vs. “it doesn’t work” camps, research shows that grade level makes a difference. High school students generally get the biggest benefits from homework, with middle school students getting about half the benefits, and elementary school students getting few benefits (Cooper et al., 2006). Since young students are still developing study habits like concentration and self-regulation, assigning a lot of homework isn’t all that helpful.

Parents Should Be Supportive, Not Intrusive

Well-designed homework not only strengthens student learning, it also provides ways to create connections between a student’s family and school. Homework offers parents insight into what their children are learning, provides opportunities to talk with children about their learning, and helps create conversations with school communities about ways to support student learning (Walker et al., 2004).

However, parent involvement can also hurt student learning. Patall, Cooper, and Robinson (2008) found that students did worse when their parents were perceived as intrusive or controlling. Motivation plays a key role in learning, and parents can cause unintentional harm by not giving their children enough space and autonomy to do their homework.

Homework Across the Globe

OECD , the developers of the international PISA test, published a 2014 report looking at homework around the world. They found that 15-year-olds worldwide spend an average of five hours per week doing homework (the U.S. average is about six hours). Surprisingly, countries like Finland and Singapore spend less time on homework (two to three hours per week) but still have high PISA rankings. These countries, the report explains, have support systems in place that allow students to rely less on homework to succeed. If a country like the U.S. were to decrease the amount of homework assigned to high school students, test scores would likely decrease unless additional supports were added.

Homework Is About Quality, Not Quantity

Whether you’re pro- or anti-homework, keep in mind that research gives a big-picture idea of what works and what doesn’t, and a capable teacher can make almost anything work. The question isn’t  homework vs. no homework ; instead, we should be asking ourselves, “How can we transform homework so that it’s engaging and relevant and supports learning?”

Cooper, H. (1989). Synthesis of research on homework . Educational leadership, 47 (3), 85-91.

Cooper, H. (2010). Homework’s Diminishing Returns . The New York Times .

Cooper, H., Robinson, J. C., & Patall, E. A. (2006). Does homework improve academic achievement? A synthesis of research, 1987–2003 . Review of Educational Research, 76 (1), 1-62.

Darling-Hammond, L., & Ifill-Lynch, O. (2006). If They'd Only Do Their Work! Educational Leadership, 63 (5), 8-13.

Eren, O., & Henderson, D. J. (2011). Are we wasting our children's time by giving them more homework? Economics of Education Review, 30 (5), 950-961.

Fernández-Alonso, R., Suárez-Álvarez, J., & Muñiz, J. (2015, March 16). Adolescents’ Homework Performance in Mathematics and Science: Personal Factors and Teaching Practices . Journal of Educational Psychology. Advance online publication.

OECD (2014). Does Homework Perpetuate Inequities in Education? PISA in Focus , No. 46, OECD Publishing, Paris.

Patall, E. A., Cooper, H., & Robinson, J. C. (2008). Parent involvement in homework: A research synthesis . Review of Educational Research, 78 (4), 1039-1101.

Van Voorhis, F. L. (2003). Interactive homework in middle school: Effects on family involvement and science achievement . The Journal of Educational Research, 96 (6), 323-338.

Walker, J. M., Hoover-Dempsey, K. V., Whetsel, D. R., & Green, C. L. (2004). Parental involvement in homework: A review of current research and its implications for teachers, after school program staff, and parent leaders . Cambridge, MA: Harvard Family Research Project.

Classroom Management Expert

Pros and Cons of Homework: What You Should Know

what are the pros and cons for homework

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Homework can be a great tool for students to improve their academic performance, but there are also some drawbacks.

Some pros to assigning homework are that it can help students practice and master the material they learned in class, it can help students develop good study habits, and it can give students a sense of accomplishment. Some cons to assigning homework are that it can be a burden for students if they have a lot of homework to do, it can take away time from family and friends, and it can cause students to stress out.

In this post, I am going to explore the various benefits and drawbacks of using homework in your classroom. Let’s get started!

Pros of homework

Homework can be a great tool for you to improve the learning process of your students if you use it correctly. The following are some of the benefits of homework for teaching and learning:

1. It helps students learn.

Homework has been proven to help students learn effectively. It can help them retain information, increase their focus and improve their recall. By providing a routine for homework, students are able to better manage their time and stay on track with their education.

For example, homework can help students keep track of their progress and reinforce what they have learned. It can also help them focus on what they are doing in class, which will improve the amount of time that they spend in class.

2. It improves test scores.

Homework is a common assignment that students receive in school. It can be thought of as a way for teachers to help students learn and practice the material they have learned. Research has shown that homework can improve students’ test scores. This is because homework helps students learn the material more thoroughly and retain it better.

If a student does their homework, they will be able to answer questions from the test that they will take on that topic. The more homework a student does, the better their test scores will be. For example, in one study, it was found that homework helps improve students’ scores on standardized tests . The more homework a student doe s, the better it is for their grades.

3. It increases student engagement and motivation.

Homework has been proven to increase student engagement and motivation. When done correctly, homework can help students learn by engaging them in challenging tasks and helping them develop skills.

Homework can have a number of benefits for students, both in terms of engagement and motivation. By helping to reinforce the learning process, homework can help students retain information better and increase their understanding of what they are studying. With this, students become engaged and motivated to continue learning.

Additionally, homework can provide a sense of accomplishment and help students feel responsible for their own learning. This motivates students to engage in their studies.

Finally, homework can be used as an opportunity for students to connect with other classmates and share ideas about the material they are studying. Connecting and sharing ideas with classmates about homework helps students become engaged and motivated.

4. It enhances productivity.

Homework has been shown to be beneficial to student productivity in the classroom. Homework allows students to focus on their work and learn more about the material being taught. It also helps students develop better study habits, which can lead to them performing better in class.

Additionally, homework can provide a sense of accomplishment that can encourage students to continue learning. Overall, homework enhances student productivity in the classroom by helping them focus on their work and learn more about the material being taught.

5. It teaches responsibility.

Every student knows the feeling of dread when they have to do their homework. For some, it can be tedious and time-consuming. But homework has a far bigger purpose than just helping students pass exams-it teaches them how to be responsible citizens in the classroom.

Homework can help students develop critical thinking skills, problem-solving abilities, organizational skills, and time management skills. It also encourages them to stay on top of their studies and stay up-to-date with new information. In short, homework helps students become better learners overall.

While there are many benefits to doing homework, it can also be frustrating when it’s not done on time or when it’s not done well. That’s why teachers value homework so much; it helps students learn how to be responsible members of society.

6. Homework develops time management skills.

Many students believe that homework is a waste of time because they think it only helps teachers track their progress and keeps them from having fun. In reality, homework is one of the most important tools teachers have to help students develop time management skills.

The reason homework helps students develop these skills is because it forces students to focus on their schoolwork in addition to their other responsibilities. By doing this, students learn how to manage their time better and stay on track with their goals.

Additionally, homework can also help students learn how to problem-solve and work independently. When students are able to do these things, they are more likely to be successful in the classroom.

In all, homework can help students learn how to manage their time by planning and organizing their work, dividing up tasks into manageable chunks, prioritizing homework over other responsibilities, and scheduling time for schoolwork.

7. It helps students develop study skills.

When students are assigned homework, they are learning to develop important study skills. Homework helps students learn how to organize and focus their attention, manage their time, and build discipline. It also teaches them how to solve problems. These skills will help the student in the classroom and in life.

For example, a student who can better organize their time and work independently may be more likely to finish homework assignments that are harder.

8. Homework builds self-discipline.

When students work on their homework, they are developing self-discipline. Self-discipline is the ability to focus, organize and manage time, plan, solve problems, and follow directions. Self-discipline is vital to success in school and in life.

For example, a student who has developed self-discipline is less likely to be distracted by friends and television, which are two common distractions that many students face in school.

9. Homework helps students learn to work independently.

When students are required to complete their homework, they become more independent learners. They gain skills in time management, organization, and problem-solving. These skills will help them in the classroom and in life.

For example, a student who has learned to work independently is more likely to be able to plan and schedule his or her time throughout the day, which will help him or her become more organized.

10. Homework helps students learn to follow directions.

In the classroom, following directions can be difficult for students. This is especially true for students who have difficulty paying attention to what is happening in class. Homework can help students learn how to follow directions.

By doing homework, students are required to complete a task that has been assigned by the teacher. This makes it easier for the student to pay attention in class and follow directions.

For example, students often get homework that requires them to pay attention and follow directions before completing the tasks assigned to them. With that, they learn to follow instructions and directions, which is a critical skill in life.

11. It enhances critical thinking skills.

How does homework enhance the critical thinking skills of students in the classroom? Homework can help improve the critical thinking skills of students in the classroom by requiring them to apply their knowledge and skills in a practical context.

In addition, homework can also help students learn how to use their critical thinking skills to solve problems. Furthermore, homework can help students develop patience and perseverance when faced with difficult tasks. Overall, homework helps students become better thinkers and more effective learners.

12. It boosts academic achievement.

Homework can boost academic achievement by helping students focus and retain information, work ahead in their lessons, and build valuable study skills.

Additionally, staying organized and completing tasks on time can help students build good habits that will carry over into other areas of their lives. For example, homework helps students develop skills that propel them to become successful in the classroom.

13. It promotes teamwork and cooperation.

Many people believe that homework promotes teamwork and cooperation among students in the classroom. This is because homework often requires students to work together on tasks, which helps them learn how to work cooperatively.

Additionally, when students are required to complete homework, they are more likely to try hard and cooperate with their classmates. This is because they know that if they do their homework, they will receive good grades.

For example, when students are given group homework, it can help them to learn how to cooperate and work with other people to achieve a particular task.

14. Prepare for future academic challenges.

Homework can help students better prepare for future academic challenges. This is because it allows them to develop skills that will be useful in their academic careers.

For example, homework can help students learn how to organize their information, study for tests, and think critically. In addition, homework can also help students build vocabulary and learn new concepts.

15. It promotes good work habits.

The benefits of homework are well known among educators, but what about students? There are many reasons why homework promotes good work habits among students.

One reason is that it helps students learn how to manage their time. They learn how to prioritize and how to plan their days. Homework also teaches critical-thinking skills. Students must be able to analyze information and come up with solutions on their own.

Homework can also help strengthen relationships between parents and children, as parents support and supervise students to complete their homework. Parents can see the value in homework, and children may have a better attitude towards school if they know their parents expect them to complete their work.

16. It enhances problem-solving skills.

Problem-solving is a critical skill for students to develop. Problem-solving is the process of making decisions about how to solve problems. Homework can help students learn problem-solving skills by providing opportunities to practice them. In fact, homework has been shown to improve problem-solving skills .

One reason why homework is so effective in teaching problem-solving skills is that it provides a consistent and systematic format for practicing these skills. Homework assignments provide students with opportunities to practice critical thinking skills, identify and solve problems, and develop persistence. Additionally, homework can help students learn how to work cooperatively with others. All of these abilities are essential for success in school and in life.

17. A greater understanding of the material.

Homework has been shown to enhance a greater understanding of the material among students. This is because homework allows students to practice what they have learned and to reinforce it. It also allows them to explore the material further and experiment with it.

In addition, homework can help students develop their critical thinking skills. This is because homework helps students not to only understand the material, but to also organize it and think about it. It can help them develop their memory and recall abilities, which are essential for success in school and life.

Cons of homework

When you don’t use homework appropriately in the classroom, the following problems will arise:

1. It can leave students feeling overwhelmed.

Homework can be a daunting task for students, leaving them feeling overwhelmed and stressed. As homework has become more and more common in schools, students are often left with little choice but to complete it.

This can lead to students feeling overwhelmed and stressed, as they have no break from the workload and are often expected to perform well in class while also completing the homework. This can create a difficult balance for students, as they are faced with two competing demands.

2. It can be a distraction from other activities or interests.

Homework can be a distraction from other activities or interests because it can be time-consuming, boring, and repetitive. It can also stress people out, which can lead to problems at school or in their personal lives. There are ways to make homework less of a distraction and more of a learning experience. For example, teachers could make assignments that are relevant to the class material, make sure the homework is done in a reasonable amount of time, and give students feedback on their work.

There are a few reasons why homework can be a distraction from other activities or interests. One reason is that homework often requires concentration and focus, which can be difficult to maintain when there are other distractions around. Additionally, many students find it boring or tedious to do homework, which can lead to them losing interest in the task overall.

Finally, because homework often takes up a large amount of time each night, it can prevent students from spending time with friends or family members, which can also lead to boredom and loneliness.

3. It can create stress and anxiety in students.

Homework can create stress and anxiety in students for a variety of reasons. For some, homework can be a daunting task that requires hours of uninterrupted concentration. For others, it may be a source of frustration due to the lack of consistency in its delivery or because it conflicts with other duties outside of school.

Regardless of the reason, homework can often lead to feelings of stress and frustration. This is particularly true for students who are struggling academically or who have other responsibilities at home. Consequently, homework can be a major contributor to stress and anxiety in students.

4. It can lead to cheating.

Cheating on homework has become a common phenomenon among students across the globe. There are many reasons why this may be the case, but one of the most common reasons is that homework can be a source of stress for students. When assignments are difficult or when there is pressure to perform well, some students may feel like they have to cheat in order to get through them.

Another reason why cheating on homework can occur is that it can be an easy way for students to get ahead. If they know the answers to certain questions, they can simply copy them off of their classmates and submit their work as their own. This type of cheating is unfair to other students who have worked hard on their assignments.

And finally, it can be a way for students to hide their mistakes or try to cheat on tests. All of these reasons are why homework should not be given out as punishment, but rather as a way to help students learn and improve.

5. It can cause health problems.

How can homework cause health problems for students? Numerous studies have shown that a large number of students experience negative health effects from doing homework. These health problems can include stress, anxiety, insomnia, and even depression.

One reason why homework can be so problematic is that it often takes up a lot of time and energy that should be spent on other activities. Additionally, homework can be extremely tedious and requires a great deal of concentration. For these reasons, many students find it difficult to complete it proficiently.

Consequently, excessive amounts of homework may actually be harmful to your overall health.

6. It can interfere with family time.

Homework can interfere with students’ family time if the student is not able to complete their homework in a reasonable amount of time. This can lead to tension between the student and their parents, as well as less time for the student to spend with their families.

Excessive homework can create stress for parents, who may have to pick up the children after school or help them with their studies. Ultimately, homework can cause tension between students and their parents, and it can be a barrier to communication between the two parties.

There are many benefits to having a homework system in place, but it must be done in a way that does not interfere with family time.

7. It can interfere with sleep.

Homework can interfere with the sleep of students for a variety of reasons. For some students, homework can lead to feelings of overwhelm and stress. This can disrupt the natural sleep cycle and cause students to have difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep. Additionally, completing homework can take up time that could be spent relaxing and enjoying downtime with friends or family. As a result, homework may actually reduce the amount of sleep that students get each night.

8. Too much homework can affect students’ achievement.

Too much homework can have negative consequences for students’ academic achievement and future success. Too much homework can lead to a decrease in student productivity, diminished focus, and diminished enjoyment of learning.

Furthermore, it has been shown that students who do too much homework tend to have lower grades and lower test scores. There are several reasons why too much homework can have these detrimental effects.

First, when students are excessively busy with assigned work, they may lose opportunities to participate in extracurricular activities or other enrichment programs that could help them improve their skills and knowledge.

Second, when students become bogged down by excessive amounts of homework, they may find it difficult to devote sufficient time to studying for tests or completing other academic tasks.

Third, when students are spending too much time working on schoolwork rather than engaging in other enjoyable activities, they may lose interest in learning and forfeit valuable opportunities for personal growth.

All of the above negatively impact the academic achievement of students.

9. Homework can lead to boredom.

Many students find homework to be a tedious and time-consuming chore. This can lead to boredom and a lack of focus in the classroom, which can adversely affect student learning. Too much homework can actually make students feel tired and stressed, making them less likely to enjoy their schoolwork.

To conclude, homework can be a great way to help students learn and retain information. If done correctly, however, homework provides valuable instruction that reinforces what was learned in class. Too much of it, on the other hand, can result in students feeling overwhelmed and not getting the benefits they need from their studies. It’s important for educators to strike a balance between providing enough challenges for students while also ensuring they are well-rested so they are able to excel academically.

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Pros and Cons of Homework

what are the pros and cons for homework

“Not until you finish your homework.”

“I want you to finish your dinner and get right to work on your homework.”

“Is your homework done? Then, no, you get up those stairs and finish first.”

We’ve all heard something similar from our mom, dad, or caretaker. Homework is a big staple of the American school scene, just like lockers, the school bell, and big yellow buses. Portrayed in media from the Brady Bunch to Cocomelon, homework has been an academic given for decades. 

Despite its popularity, this after-school activity has been under scrutiny for over a century. Britannica explains , “In the early 1900s, progressive education theorists, championed by the magazine Ladies’ Home Journal , decried homework’s negative impact on children’s physical and mental health, leading California to ban homework for students under 15 from 1901 until 1917. In the 1930s, homework was portrayed as child labor, which was newly illegal, but the prevailing argument was that kids needed time to do household chores.”

Regardless of opposition, homework persevered, and millions of American students still spend long hours completing bookwork in their bedrooms after school. 

What are the modern objections to homework? What if the opposition is right? Is there merit to the concerns, or is homework a helpful tool for a well-rounded and comprehensive education? If you’d like to find out, now’s the time to keep reading!

How Much Time?

When analysts crunch the numbers, children spend far more time doing homework than many believe necessary. According to One Class, elementary school students spend an average of 42 minutes a day on homework. Some parents and educators argue that five additional hours of schoolwork per week is too much for elementary students. 

High schoolers spend even more time on after-school assignments. Pew Research published a 2019 article in which they explained , “Overall, teens (ages 15 to 17) spend an hour a day, on average, doing homework during the school year, up from 44 minutes a day about a decade ago and 30 minutes in the mid-1990s.”

Globally, the U.S. ranks 15th for the average amount of time spent on homework by high school students. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development conducted a worldwide study on 15-year-old students to evaluate the homework load for high schoolers worldwide. 

Among the countries included in the study, China ranked first, with students spending an average of 13.8 hours a week on homework. The Netherlands ranked the lowest, with their students studying after school for an average of 5.8 hours a week. American students spent an average of 6.1 hours per week completing their homework.

What Students Think

Homework has become a point of significant stress for American students. 

One Stanford study found that 56% of students who participated in the survey stated that homework was a primary source of stress. Another study found that the decline in adequate teenage sleep may be partly due to homework. In yet another study, 82% of students interviewed admitted that they were “often or always stressed by schoolwork.” 

It’s not just the students who object to frequent homework. Parents have begun to voice their displeasure as well. One mother in Canada went viral on social media when she announced that she and her husband were done watching their ten-year-old daughter stress over her homework every night. They decided that homework wasn’t a useful educational tool for their child.

Another mother in Kansas expressed how frustrating it is when her daughter has homework that she as a mother is unsure how to help with. “I feel bad for emailing a teacher in the evenings. I’m slightly annoyed at homework in general because I don’t know what the teacher taught.” 

What Teachers Think

Educators debate whether or not homework is a positive educational tool. One Duke University professor recommends homework, believing there is a correlation between homework and academic success for older students. He recommends implementing the “10 Minute Rule.” Essentially, students receive 10 minutes of homework per day for each grade. (For instance, 1st graders would receive 10 minutes of homework, 5th graders 50 minutes, 12th graders 120 minutes.)

A Texas teacher informed the parents of her 2nd-grade students that she would not be assigning homework anymore. Instead, she asked that the children participate in real-life activities that encourage growth and success. These activities included outdoor play, family meals, and reading with parents. As her plan evolved, she acknowledged that some students actually enjoyed homework and missed the challenge. Other students received extra work here and there on an as-needed basis. 

Defining the Need

One question that desperately needs to be asked is, “What’s the purpose of homework?” 

The answer to this question can provide parameters, determine whether or not homework achieves the goal(s), and establish if it should continue to be a staple in the American education system.

Psychology Today wonders the same thing , without any clear-cut resolution. “I started the blog with a question ‘What’s the purpose of homework?’ I’ll end with the same question. If a teacher who is assigning the homework can’t provide a clear rationale behind this question, then maybe the homework shouldn’t be assigned.”

However, Honest Pros and Cons makes a case for homework in more detail. Their reasoning for homework includes :

  • Practicing what they learn in the classroom
  • Improving study habits
  • Developing self-discipline
  • Enhancing independent problem-solving skills

McRel International notes that many factors play into whether or not homework is an effective strategy for students. They acknowledge that after-school assignments have pros and cons and state that the research is by no means definitive.

Proponents of homework present several positives: 

  • It improves student achievement – “Students in classes that were assigned homework outperformed 69% of students who didn’t have homework on both standardized tests and grades.” – Britannica ProCon

While the data is not conclusive, numerous studies have shown a correlation between academic success and the use of homework. 

  • It involves parents – “Homework is also the place where schools and families most frequently intersect.” – US News

Homework encourages parents and children to spend time together problem-solving and working toward a goal. It also gives parents a window into what their child is learning and the progress they are making. 

  • It encourages time management – “Homework is an effective tool when teaching your child about time management. This means that time management should extend beyond the classroom and into your home. ” – Edugage

American students spend roughly six hours a day at school. This schedule doesn’t leave much flexibility for sports, a social life, and a healthy amount of free time on top of homework. Kids have to learn time management if they want a life outside of their education. 

  • It tracks progress – “Homework allows teachers to track students’ progress, meaning that homework helps to find out the academic strengths and weaknesses of children.” – Honest Pros and Cons

Homework gives teachers a chance to see what the student can achieve independently. Students must put into practice what they learned in the schoolroom in a different environment and without their teacher present.

  • It develops working memory – “Revising the key skills learned in the classroom during homework increases the likelihood of a student remembering and being able to use those skills in a variety of situations in the future, contributing to their overall education.” – The Guardian

Environment can play an active part in memory. Biologically, our brains more easily recall memories and facts when we’re immersed in the same surroundings in which we created that memory or learned those facts. Homework removes the environmental factor, forcing students to strengthen their working memory. 

Concerned about the effects of homework on students, opponents note these objections:

  • The science isn’t settled – “There is no conclusive evidence that homework increases student achievement across the board.” – Reading Rockets

As we’ve noted before, the data isn’t conclusive despite the numerous studies conducted. To many, the negatives suggested by various studies outweigh the proposed positives.

  • It adds stress – “Researchers have found that students who spend too much time on homework experience more levels of stress and physical health problems.” – Psychology Today

Studies have concluded that too much homework creates undue stress on developing minds and bodies. This translates into mental, emotional, and physical issues for many students. This stress also affects their sleep , both the amount of sleep and the quality of that sleep. 

  • It impacts other interests/pursuits – “Homework prevents self-discovery and having the time to learn new skills outside of the school system.” – University of the People

Critics of homework fear that, in addition to time spent on school grounds, after-school assignments stunt students’ abilities to experience life outside academia. Students who struggle with completing work at home are even more susceptible to a lifestyle void of other interests. 

  • It expands the gap – “One study concluded that homework increases social inequality because it ‘potentially serves as a mechanism to further advantage those students who already experience some privilege in the school system while further disadvantaging those who may already be in a marginalized position.’” – Britannica ProCon

Homework often involves a computer and/or an internet connection. During the Covid-19 pandemic, 30% of students didn’t have the necessary technology at home to effectively participate in distance learning, raising questions about inequality affecting homework that relies on at-home technology. 

  • It creates family tension – “Assigning homework forces a person to take on added disciplinary responsibilities.” – Front Range Christian School  

While homework can bring children and parents together, it can also drive a wedge between them. Students who feel overwhelmed or who need a break from focusing on academics often buck their homework requirements, leaving parents to enforce education standards that the teachers created. Parents and students alike can end up frustrated, with little progress made. 

A World of Unknowns

While the homework debate rages on, researchers continue to work toward a conclusive answer. In the meantime, teachers, parents, schools, and communities can work together to find a solution that meets the needs of their students. 

Without a doubt, homework has positive aspects that encourage students to advance through personal and academic growth. The trick is to nurture this positivity without stunting progress with adverse side effects. 

It’s a double-edged sword that’s well worth considering to ensure the best for our kids.

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List of 10 Big Pros and Cons of Homework

The ongoing contentions about the importance of homework have been in discussion for years among educators, parents and students. There are parents and educators who support this practice but there are also those who are not in favor of making students do extra school work at home. There are even some countries that implement a no homework policy. Is homework really an integral part of learning?

List of Pros of Homework

1. It makes up for the insufficient time children spend in school to learn. Proponents say that giving school children activities to do at home can offer them more time to master a subject. Teachers give school assignments to students on the lessons they have tackled in the classroom to assess if students have understood what was learned from academic subjects like Math, Physics and English. Advocates of homework believe the time spent in school to learn is not always sufficient and letting students spend extra time to solve problems and learn new vocabulary words is crucial to their learning . It also serves as a foundation for further learning that students will benefit from in the long run.

2. It is an effective way for students to learn discipline. People who support the giving of homework to students is a way to teach young individuals and growing children discipline since they will have to learn how to focus and set aside unimportant activities to prioritize finishing the tasks they have to submit the following day. For homework supporters, not giving students school work at home might make them derelict with their studies and be lazy.

3. Mastery of knowledge and skills depend on practice. Aside from the time allotted for students to learn during class hours, continuing their learning at home can enhance what they already know. Take home activities give students more time to practice. Homework given to college and high school students give them more time to master their subjects and absorb the teachings of their professors and teachers.

4. Parents can see what their children are doing in school and help with the homework as well. Another benefit of homework is to both the parents and students. If students have school work to do at home, parents will be able to see the kind of education their kids are getting. They are assured their children are into their studies and are really learning from school. Moreover, this can be a bonding time between parents and children especially if they will be able to help their kids with their homework and school projects.

5. It can instill good study habits and reduce time spent on watching television and playing video games. By giving students projects and take home assignments, students, especially the younger ones can acquire good study habits at an early age. With the evolution of technology and the myriad of gadgets and computer games to keep children distracted, it is best to give them something worthwhile to do so they can understand the importance of studying and learn to like it as well. Moreover, they will be motivated to use their gadgets and computers for studying and research instead of spending hours playing video games, checking their Facebook accounts and watching television on end.

6. It prepares them for the real world once they finish education. By giving homework, children will learn to be responsible, solve problems, analyze, manage their time and take on responsibilities. The skills they learn from school are the same skills they will need when they start their independence and be young adults. Proponents are firm in saying that when these kids become adults and be members of the workforce or even be entrepreneurs themselves, they will be using what they have or not have learned while studying. Extra time spent at home for doing school work can help them overcome the challenges they will face when they get out of the real world.

List of Cons of Homework

1. It can be stressful for the student especially for young kids. Critics argue that homework given to students especially the younger school children are too much to handle. If this is the case, homework can be a stressor instead of a motivator. If bombarded with lessons at school and even at home, children might lose interest and worse, dread school days. This is a concern that bothers some parents and even educators.

2. It is not as effective as proponents say it is. Some opponents say that homework is not a guarantee that students will master skills and absorb what they learned from school. They say that some parents or tutors are the ones doing the homework instead of the students. If this is the case, giving homework is irrelevant when it comes to knowledge enhancement. They also point out that there are students with parents to help them with their school projects and there are those who don’t have parents to guide them which make homework an uneven playing filed for students.

3. Homework does not necessarily result to improving school performance. For opponents, homework gives less or no benefit when it comes to motivating students to improve performance in school. They oppose what proponents are saying that there is a positive correlation between homework and how students perform in school for the reason that not all students have equal levels of intelligence. What might be helpful and easy for students who are good in a certain subject might be useless and difficult to students who have different levels of intelligence.

4. It can be a burden to students, especially younger kids. With all the activities in school, both academic and extracurricular, students, specifically the young ones, are already tired when they get home. Having to solve difficult math problems, memorize long lines or read several chapters can be tiresome for them. Not only will they end up staying up late but they might not be able to absorb anything.

Both proponents and opponents have presented rational and acceptable views about homework. While it can be an effective way to master the skills of students, too much homework can also drain the minds of students. Perhaps one question needs to be answered. How much homework should a student has to be given? In the end, it is best to assess the student’s level of learning and give homework accordingly.

The pros and cons of homework

Should schoolwork be left at the school gate?

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A child does homework

1. Pro: improves academic achievement

2. con: risk of artificial intelligence, 3. pro: other benefits of homework, 4. con: less time with family and friends, 5. pro: parent involvement, 6. con: stress for students and teachers.

Homework should be scrapped to give children more time for “other creative things”, the president of Ireland has said.

UK pupils do more homework than many European countries Irish president Michael D Higgins begins historic UK visit

Speaking to Irish broadcaster RTE, Michael D. Higgins said school work should be “finished at the school” rather than at home, “an utterance likely to be seized upon by children for years to come in classrooms far beyond the shores of the Emerald Isle”, said the Independent .

Here are some of the benefits and some of the negative effects of homework for schoolchildren.

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A 2006 meta-analysis of research by Duke University in North Carolina found that children who have homework perform better academically at school. But it doesn’t benefit all students equally, the research found. The correlation was stronger for older students (12 and over) than younger students.

But the evidence is far from conclusive over whether homework really does increase student achievement. Other studies have found that it has a positive effect only under certain conditions, while others have found negative effects, and some studies suggest homework does not affect student achievement at all.

The arrival of highly sophisticated artificial intelligence chatbots, such as ChatGPT , could make it easier for students to cheat on their essays or homework – or even force teachers and professors to scrap homework altogether.

ChatGPT has been “trained on a gigantic sample of text from the internet” and can “understand human language, conduct conversations with humans and generate detailed text that many have said is human-like and quite impressive”, said the Daily Mail .

Kevin Bryan, an associate professor of strategic management at the University of Toronto, tweeted that he was “shocked” by the capabilities of ChatGPT after challenging the AI to answer numerous exam questions and found that it gave A-grade answers.

Evidence suggests that homework can bring non-academic benefits, particularly for younger school students. These include “learning the importance of responsibility, managing time, developing study habits, and staying with a task until it is completed”, said Reading Rockets , a national public media literacy initiative in the US.

The British Council agreed that it helps to develop “study habits and independent learning”, as well as helping students to “retain information taught in the classroom” and involving parents in learning.

TV presenter Kirstie Allsopp weighed in on the debate recently, urging parents to “enjoy the weekend” with their children, branding homework a “waste of time”.

“Find a book, cuddle up and read it together, or watch Winterwatch, or cook something with kids doing all the weighing and chopping. Then put that in the homework diary and enjoy your weekend with your kids,” she wrote on Twitter .

“There is nothing better for children than spending time with you, talking, doing and learning at the same time,” she said. “Following a recipe is reading, maths, science and fine motor skills in one activity.”

Homework can be a good way for parents to stay up to date with what their child is being taught in class as well as monitor their progress. But the extent to which parental involvement with homework is beneficial for children is still a matter of debate.

According to Reading Rockets, some studies show that homework assignments that require interactions between students and parents are “more likely to be turned in” than assignments that don’t require parental input. But other studies have found that “parent involvement in homework has no impact on student achievement”.

Educators and parents responded to President Higgins’ comments to say homework is a source of stress for all involved.

Replying to a Facebook post by Hull Live , one teacher said it was “a pain sourcing, copying, chasing and marking it”, while other parents said homework placed undue stress on young children. “I think they do enough work in the school hours as it is,” said one parent, while another commented: “Children need to switch off when they get home. No wonder children suffer mental health issues, they are burnt out before they reach secondary school.”

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  Sorcha Bradley is a writer at The Week and a regular on “The Week Unwrapped” podcast. She worked at The Week magazine for a year and a half before taking up her current role with the digital team, where she mostly covers UK current affairs and politics. Before joining The Week, Sorcha worked at slow-news start-up Tortoise Media. She has also written for Sky News, The Sunday Times, the London Evening Standard and Grazia magazine, among other publications. She has a master’s in newspaper journalism from City, University of London, where she specialised in political journalism.

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Honest Pros and Cons

12 Pros and Cons of Homework

Last Updated on March 11, 2021 by Filip Poutintsev

Homework is defined as tasks assigned to students by school teachers that are intended to be carried out during non-school hours. Homework is designed to reinforce what students have already learned. Homework is a word that most students dread hearing.

Pros and Cons of Homework

Pros and Cons of Homework

The teachers assign homework to the students as they believe that homework will help the students to recollect the topics that were covered in the class. There are some lessons that are perfect for the classroom environment, but there are also some things that children can learn better at home. So homework helps to maintain the balance between them.

Generally, homework includes reading, writing, or completion of a certain problem which will improve the overall performance of the student. This means that kids who do homework are more committed to doing well in school.

Purpose of Homework

The most common purpose of homework is to have students practice material already presented in class so as to reinforce learning and facilitate mastery of specific skills. It is found that appropriate homework in the right amounts can enhance younger students’ learning and prepare them for a routine of studying as they get older.

Homework impacts students’ academic achievement—test scores. Homework is also thought to improve study habits, attitudes toward school, self-discipline, inquisitiveness, and independent problem-solving skills.

Preparation assignments introduce the material that will be presented in future lessons which helps students obtain the maximum benefit when the new material is covered in class.

Should Students Have Homework?

The type and amount of homework given to students have been debated for over a century. For years, teachers and parents thought that homework was a necessary tool when educating children. But studies about the effectiveness of homework have been conflicting and inconclusive.

Proponents of homework say that it improves student achievement and allows for independent learning of classroom and life skills. Also, homework allows parents to monitor their child’s learning. Opponents of homework say that too much may be harmful to students as it can increase stress, reduce leisure and sleep time, lead to cheating, and is not proven to be beneficial for younger.

According to Harris Cooper, a professor at Duke University, there is a positive correlation between homework and student achievement, meaning students who did homework performed better in school.

As a general rule, the maximum amount of time that a student should spend each day on lessons outside of school is 10 minutes per each grade level. This means a first grader should spend 10 minutes daily on his homework while a senior high school kid should spend about 2 hours.

Should students have homework or not? Let’s discuss some of the key pros and cons of the homework.

Pros of Homework

1. homework encourages practice.

One of the positive effects of homework is that it helps to encourage the discipline of practice. Repetition is necessary to get better at skills. Practising the same problem over and over helps to reinforce the discipline of practice. Homework helps make concepts more clear and helps to build a career in the future.

2. Keep Track of the Progress

Homework allows teachers to track students’ progress, meaning that homework helps to find out the academic strengths and weaknesses of children. Homework can also help clue teachers into the existence of any learning disabilities their children may have, allowing them to get help and adjust learning strategies as needed.

3. Improved Academic Outcome

Studies show that homework improves student achievement in terms of improved grades, test results, and the likelihood to attend college. Research by the Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) concluded that increased homework led to better GPAs.

It has also found that students who regularly do homework have scored better in standardized tests than other students who didn’t do homework at all.

4. Teaches Time Management

When homework is assigned to the students, students are able to manage their time and make effective study plans. Homework is much more than just completing the assigned tasks but also teaches time management skills.

It helps to manage study time by completing all assignments on time. Time management is a necessary skill that a student must have which is very useful not only in school life but also in the future.

5. Parents are Involved in the Learning Process

Parents need to know what their children are learning in school. Homework helps parents to track down what their children are learning at school and their class performance. By sending homework from the school, it allows the entire family to encounter the assignments that their kids are doing when they are in school during the day. A study shows that parental involvement in homework can improve class performance.

6. Creates Communication Bridge

Homework helps to create a communication network between student, teacher, school, and parents. Teachers are unaware of the lives of the students at home and the parents are unaware of their lives at school. Communication helps to understand each other in a better way, as teachers get to know the needs of students and parents about their children’s strengths and weaknesses.

7. Provides More Learning Time

School hours aren’t always enough for students to grasp the core knowledge. Homework allows for more time to complete the learning process. Setting homework allows students to revise content learned during the day and also helps to get things thoroughly because there is sufficient time for research and also there is less disturbance in the home.

Cons of Homework

1. encourages a sedentary lifestyle.

As the students get long assignments/homework, hence require much time to complete it. If students are given more homework, then they get less amount of time for extracurricular activities and also affect social development. A sedentary lifestyle can be dangerous and can cause health problems such as obesity.

2. Causes Unnecessary Stress

With a large workload and difficult tasks, homework causes students to feel anxious and stressed. Unnecessary stress causes demotivation. In some cases, homework may even be assigned over term breaks or the summer holidays.

This causes severe stress for some children, leading to issues such as sleep deprivation. This causes behavioural changes in students and also ingraining homework as a negative aspect of school life.

3. Eats up Free Time

Free time allows children to not only relax but also discover the world. Childs spend hours completing the assignment which eats up the valuable time kids have to spend with their family, attend extracurricular activities, and catch up with friends. During that time kids can learn many things like riding a bike, reading novels, attending social activities, attending family functions, etc.

4. Not Always Effective

A study found that homework creates a negative attitude towards schooling and the education system. Research by John Hattie, Professor of Education at the University of Melbourne, has found that homework in primary school has a negligible effect on students’ academic growth, as students are completing separate and unrelated projects rather than reinforcing learned knowledge. Homework doesn’t necessarily help to improve students’ academic performance rather it puts a burden on students.

5. Discourages Creative Endeavours

As we know homework eats up the leisure time because students spend hours completing their assignments. During that time students might like to do creative works that they are interested in such as, painting, singing, playing games, learning an instrument, etc . There might be a case where a student is much interested in doing creative work rather than spending hours on homework.

Concluding the article, both the pros and cons of homework are valid. Teachers and parents find homework as a necessary task for the children’s academic success while students find it as a burden or headache. The main purpose of homework is to bridge the gap between children’s learning at school and at home.

On the one hand, homework is an effective way to reinforce the concepts that were learned at school which helps to improve the academic outcome of the students. On the other hand, homework puts a burden on the student and the time that homework demands would be better spent with meaningful activity.

Thus, a good way to think about homework is the way you think about medications or dietary supplements. If you take too little, they’ll have no effect. If you take too much, they can kill you. If you take the right amount, you’ll get better.

  • https://www.goodschools.com.au/insights/parental-advice/pros-and-cons-of-homework
  • https://www.goodschools.com.au/insights/parental-advice/the-advantages-and-disadvantages-of-homework
  • https://www.uopeople.edu/blog/the-pros-and-cons-of-homework/
  • https://www.wgu.edu/heyteach/article/should-students-have-homework1808.html

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Pros and Cons of Homework: The Great Homework Debate

1)    enforcing discipline, 2)    increased learning, 1)    prevents outside growth, 2)    causing stress, the bottom line, alternatives.

There are many pros and cons of homework. If you remember back to your childhood, one of the most annoying parts of school might have been homework. Many of dreaded having to get home, because instead of doing something fun, we had to whip out the textbook and start doing some problems – not a great way to have to spend the afternoon. We didn’t understand the importance of homework, we saw it as a chore. The same is true of children today.

Homework has been heavily debated for years, with popular opinion shifting in and out of favor over the generations. As both a teacher and a mother, I have mixed feelings on the issue. On one hand, I know the importance of skill practice. However, I also know how crucial it is for children to have time for play and exploring interests outside of school.

Homework has been heavily debated for years

Thankfully, I think there is a way to settle the ‘great homework debate’ by finding better alternatives.

Pros and Cons of Homework: The Good

Pros and Cons of Homework: The Good

The most influential part of homework is the habits it instills in students. In class, students are not often challenged to study and learn on their own; they are instead guided. With homework, students must force themselves to get the work done on their own time, instilling discipline and habits of work.

Discipline is especially relevant when these students start to work and, eventually, consider college. If they lack important studying habits, they will struggle in the self-lead world of college. But homework isn’t the only way teachers and parents can help children be more disciplined.

There are many other ways to strengthen this ability as well. One being providing structure and two, teaching problem-solving skills.

many other ways to strengthen this ability as well

Believe it or not, homework does help the student to learn the subject faster and with higher accuracy. In fact, scientific research shows there is no ‘math gene’ that makes people good at math. Instead, it takes practice.

When students approach high school, the amount of work assigned per night slowly rises. Additionally, the amount of work a student can handle with positive results raises over time as well. A high school student and an elementary schooler can’t handle the same amount of homework, which is why it is assigned in different quantities.

The benefits of homework start to degrade after two hours for high schoolers, an hour and a half for grades 7-9, 45 minutes for grades 3-6, and 15 minutes for grade k-2. So instead of getting rid of homework altogether, teachers can focus on assigning a reasonable amount of what really matters.

Pros and Cons of Homework: The Bad

Pros and Cons of Homework: The Bad

Excessive amounts of homework can take away from a student’s free time to engage in other activities. My middle schooler has struggled with this as tons of homework got in the way of doing what she loves, singing.

From sports to work to hobbies and clubs, there is a variety of things outside of homework that’s worth a student’s time. Finding balance is key. This can often be accomplished through schedule and routine.

Along with preventing outside growth, homework can lead to not just a full schedule, but a packed one. It is no secret this generation’s children are pressured more than any in the past to excel. From travel sports for elementary schoolers to thousand-dollar tutoring sessions to endless college visits – the stress is mounting.

Add homework on top of all this work, and the student is going to feel stressed out. The key is helping them feel successful while not overworking them at such a young age. I’ve found that a great way to do this is by making studying fun! If your child is one that hates math or doesn’t see the importance of reading , using interactive alternatives to study time is important.

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I know you may be thinking, I don’t assign the homework, I don’t have control. But most teachers are flexible and will work with you if you explained how other practice alternatives are helping your child.

I think the proper way to go about handling the issue of homework is not full support or a complete ban, but a middle-ground approach.

Most of the cons of homework come from an excess of it, while most pros are from homework in moderation. It is clear homework helps, at least to an extent, and too much is indeed a bad thing. We can’t coddle our kids forever, but it’s irresponsible to force a 45+ hour work week on students.

If we want students to succeed, we need to add in extra work when they need it. We also need to include it in a personalized manner to work their weak spots and hold their interest.

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Homework is boring, we all know it, so why not look for a better option? Sometimes, students do need an extra push of outside learning to succeed; homework alone might not just be enough. ArgoPrep’s new K-8 math program might be the solution you need. Keep extra work useful, and with purpose, that’s why ArgoPrep’s service is such a great addition, it adds in what you need when you need it.

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The homework debate, october 30, 2017, suzanne zimbler.

what are the pros and cons for homework

In July 2017, families in Marion County, Florida, got some surprising news. “Traditional homework as we know it will disappear, at least for elementary students,” Heidi Maier said in a voice message to parents. Maier is the school superintendent. “Instead, we want students reading,” she said.

More than 20,000 students attend the county’s 31 elementary schools. Dara Mehr is one of them. She is in the fifth grade. Last year, Dara had two or three hours of homework a night. “I would have 12 math questions and six or seven pages of work to do for reading,” she told TIME for Kids.

Now Dara’s only homework is to read for 30 minutes. She and her younger sister, Neveah, enjoy having more time for other activities. But their mom, Kayla Mehr, misses last year’s homework. “Sometimes, getting the kids to sit down and read for 30 minutes is a challenge,” she says.

what are the pros and cons for homework

Paula Fass is a professor at the University of California, Berkeley. She says there has been disagreement over homework “ever since schooling became a requirement.”

Support for homework has gone up and down through the years (see “Homework History”). “In the 1900s, a lot of parents thought that homework just occupied children’s time [when] they could be doing chores,” says Fass. Today, many still question the role that homework should have in kids’ lives. (For more on the pros and cons of homework, see “Do Kids Need Homework?”)

what are the pros and cons for homework

Finding a Balance

Harris Cooper is a professor at Duke University. He has reviewed more than 50 studies on homework. In his view, homework has a positive effect on learning. “The effect gets larger as kids move through the grades. But even in the early grades, homework has a positive effect on simple skills,” he says.

The National Education Association and the National PTA suggest that students get 10 minutes of homework per grade. Cooper supports this policy. It is known as the “10-minutes rule.”

But he warns that not all homework is helpful. “If there’s too much of it or if it’s too difficult, it can lead to frustration,” he says. “And that’s not a good thing.”

what are the pros and cons for homework

This year, the school has a new principal, Isamar Vargas. The students have homework once again. But they receive only one assignment per day. “We want to build responsibility and structure,” says Vargas. “But we don’t want to take away the important time that children have with their families or practicing sports.”

Kelly Elementary won’t be the only school to experiment with its policies. “This is part of a long history of conflict over homework,” says Fass, the Berkeley professor. “And that can be expected to continue.”

Homework History

Attitudes toward homework have changed throughout U.S. history. In the future, do you think support for homework will rise or fall?

what are the pros and cons for homework

Early 1900s: A number of school districts pass anti-homework rules. The goal? To cut down on students’ having to memorize information, known as rote learning.

what are the pros and cons for homework

1957: The Soviet Union launches Sputnik, a satellite. The space race is on. Homework in science and math increases.

1966: The National Education Association suggests “limited amounts” of homework in upper elementary school.

what are the pros and cons for homework

1983: President Ronald Reagan’s Education Department says schools need to improve. There is pressure to get tough.

1990s: Global competition is on the rise. Support for homework in the U.S. is strong. Students get more homework than they had in the past.

Assessment: Click here for a printable quiz. Teacher subscribers can find the answer key in this week's Teacher's Guide.

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what are the pros and cons for homework

Do Kids Need Homework?

TFK asked two experts to weigh in on homework. Janine Bempechat teaches human development and psychology at Wheelock College, in Massachusetts. Below, she explains why homework serves an important purpose for students of all ages. Etta Kralovec teaches education…

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The Pros and Cons of Homework: Is Homework Really Worth It?

what are the pros and cons for homework

Homework has been a long-debated topic in the realm of education. Homework used to be a given for teachers; all students were assigned homework. Nowadays, especially because of the initial year with COVID- 19, teachers are not assigning as much homework.

With COVID-19, the majority of students in a class do not complete homework. They sat around and texted while their classes were occurring. Some students have learned that they can get away with not completing it. Teachers are frustrated with the back and forth regarding homework so there has been a shift in the perspective. It is not assumed for each class anymore, but generally just assumed for certain core classes such as Math or Language Arts. So, what are the pros and cons of assigning homework to students?

The purpose of homework is to reinforce what students learn in the classroom and to prepare them for future academic tasks. However, there are a number of potential disadvantages to assigning homework. It can create more work for teachers and parents, be a source of stress for students, and can interfere with family time On the bright side, assigning homework can help students learn new material, help them develop study skills, and significantly reduce screen time.

The Cons of Homework

Completing homework incorrectly does more harm than good.

Con: Completing Homework Incorrectly Does More Harm Than Good

A large part of having homework is practicing a previous concept a student already learned. The student learns something that day during class, takes it home, and works on it a handful more times in order to instil the procedures and strategies in their head.

Occasionally, or sometimes more frequently with certain students, a student brings back a homework assignment almost all wrong. They didn’t pay attention during class and so when it came to the homework, they just guessed. As a teacher, it can be incredibly frustrating; the teacher is upset because they don’t know the concept and they’re starting to develop an incorrect way of solving or doing the concept.

If a student completes homework incorrectly, they become discouraged. They are also frustrated that they don’t understand the concept. They feel as if their time has been wasted. Well, because it kinda has. They spent 20 minutes, 45 minutes, or whatever it was, doing nothing beneficial with their time. The outcome they had from the homework didn’t create anything positive other than showing diligence in attempting to complete work.

Not Every Home Is Supportive of Completing Homework

For some students, their parents are incredibly supportive of the school; they continually check grades, they ask their students how school was that day, and some parents even help their students with their homework. This also creates a positive atmosphere to complete homework in. Students are more motivated and likely to complete their homework if someone else is showing interest in them completing it. Also, if the homework is challenging, it is better for the student’s level of understanding if an adult can help them.

Some parents could care less about school. Maybe the parent is so busy with work, they have no time to help and support their student. It could also be a circumstance where the parent struggled in school as well so they feel like individuals place too much emphasis regarding school.

In these instances where students are not supported, why would they do the homework? How could they do the homework? Students are generally motivated by things like getting their phone taken away or losing friend time, so if the parent doesn’t care enough for there to be possible negative outcomes, there might not be motivation there to do the homework.

It Discourages Opportunities for Other Activities

If students are doing homework, they are missing out on other activities. Spending time inside doing homework means no spending time outside on a bike. Spending time inside doing homework means not spending time watching a favorite TV show either. It is important for students to engage in other interests in their life outside of school. School goes alongside other interests a student has. School should not be the only thing they are worried about.

Play is an important part of a kid’s development. It gives kids the opportunity to be creative. Through being creative, they can develop in areas of dexterity, cognitive, emotional strength, and imagination, just to name a few. It is crucial for kids to run outside and play to make discoveries on their own.

Play can also strengthen a student’s interest in school . If they develop outside interests, they can apply these interests in a school setting. For example, if a student is interested in a specific football team, they might be provided with the opportunity to write a creative writing piece regarding a game played by that favorite team.

The Pros of Homework

Parents get more involved in their children’s learning.

what are the pros and cons for homework

When a parent knows more of what’s going on in a classroom, they can be more involved if they chose to do so! A parent can get more involved by helping their student with homework, working on the additional practice of what the student is currently learning, helping improve grades, and even asking the teacher questions.

Teachers most certainly appreciate when a parent wants to be involved in a student’s learning. It shows that they care. It also shows that they have their back when teaching the child. If a child is acting up, as a teacher, it is nice to know that the parent at home will support your efforts in trying to diminish a behavior or further understand a concept.

If requested by a parent, most teachers will even provide extra work for a student to practice more at home. Even though it might not account for any sort of credit, continually practicing a concept that the student does not understand will benefit them in the long run. Unfortunately, parents being supportive of homework is less common in the education world than you might think.

Even though the student is the one working on the homework, the homework is also the teacher providing the parent with the opportunity to speak up and become more involved. Teachers want parents to know what their child is working on during school. Teachers want parents to assist in making sure their student understands the concepts that are gone over during class.

Reinforces Learning and Practicing Good Study Habits

By having students complete homework, you are having them practice learning. Most things in life are learning. We constantly take in new information and remold it into a way that benefits us or a way we want to see it. With learning, we adapt new ways of doing something or even dislikes we might have. Students practicing a skill is important to mastering that skill. As time goes on, the hope is that students will realize they need to continually work on learning something in order to be a pro.

Practicing good study habits is a key outcome of homework. Most students are in school Kindergarten through 12th grade, with some even extending 15 years after 12th grade. Some individuals don’t realize the full extent of time they are in school. It is years and years and years. It is crucial to set yourself up for success by attending school for such a long time. By developing positive routines and effective methods of studying, a student will experience more wins during their time in school.

One of the more important study habits that develop from homework is t ime management skills . Developing the skill to know how long to spend on what things in life will allow a person to succeed. Students can use these skills on a daily basis to figure out how much time they will get to spend with friends or how long it takes them to get to and from school.

Time management skills are also so applicable to other things later in life. When students are learning time management skills with homework, they can apply this to spending time with friends, watching a television show, or even a job.

Can Reduce Screen Time

pro-can-reduce-screen-time

We spend so much time on devices, just about everyone included. We are on social media, reading articles, buying things, watching movies, etc. Especially now in the world of COVID- 19, even more, has been transferred to an online format. Students are on computers daily at most schools. When they get home, oftentimes students are on phones texting friends or on Snapchat. Completing homework instead of being on social media, means a reduced amount of time in front of a screen .

Now, some homework might be online, but not all homework is. Depending on the subject, teachers assign plenty of homework on paper. Most homework is on paper because teachers cannot assume a child has a device available at home to complete homework. Some families are low income and can’t afford to have a computer at home. Assigning homework on the computer would put low-income families at a disadvantage.

Related: What are the Pros and Cons of Virtual Learning?

The Bottom Line – Pros and Cons of Homework

Is assigning homework beneficial or hurtful? Every subject, teacher, and circumstance is different.

Homework can be a mainly positive item for some students and mainly a negative item for other students. The reason why it is such a debate is that a teacher is assigning homework for an entire class, not just one student. Even if they know each student well, there is no way that every single student has a supportive household.

If a teacher assigns homework, they are benefiting only part of the students. If a teacher doesn’t assign homework, they are giving the students, who would be completing it, a disadvantage.

Do the pros outweigh the cons with homework? What do you think?

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25 Reasons Homework Should Be Banned (Busywork Arguments)

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As students across the globe plow through heaps of homework each night, one question lingers in the minds of educators, parents, and students alike: should homework be banned?

This question is not new, yet it continues to spark lively debate as research findings, anecdotal evidence, and personal experiences paint a complex picture of the pros and cons of homework.

On one hand, proponents of homework argue that it reinforces classroom learning, encourages a disciplined work ethic, and provides teachers with valuable insight into student comprehension. They see homework as an extension of classroom instruction that solidifies and enriches learning while fostering important skills like time management and self-discipline. It also offers an opportunity for parents to be involved in their children's education.

However, some people say there are a lot of downsides. They argue that excessive homework can lead to stress and burnout, reduce time for extracurricular activities and family interactions, exacerbate educational inequalities, and even negatively impact students' mental health.

child stressed about homework

This article presents 25 reasons why we might need to seriously consider this radical shift in our educational approach. But first, lets share some examples of what homework actually is.

Examples of Homework

These examples cover a wide range of subjects and complexity levels, reflecting the variety of homework assignments students might encounter throughout their educational journey.

  • Spelling lists to memorize for a test
  • Math worksheets for practicing basic arithmetic operations
  • Reading assignments from children's books
  • Simple science projects like growing a plant
  • Basic geography assignments like labeling a map
  • Art projects like drawing a family portrait
  • Writing book reports or essays
  • Advanced math problems
  • Research projects on various topics
  • Lab reports for science experiments
  • Reading and responding to literature
  • Preparing presentations on various topics
  • Advanced math problems involving calculus or algebra
  • Reading classic literature and writing analytical essays
  • Research papers on historical events
  • Lab reports for advanced science experiments
  • Foreign language exercises
  • Preparing for standardized tests
  • College application essays
  • Extensive research papers
  • In-depth case studies
  • Advanced problem-solving in subjects like physics, engineering, etc.
  • Thesis or dissertation writing
  • Extensive reading and literature reviews
  • Internship or practicum experiences

Lack of proven benefits

measured scientific results

Homework has long been a staple of traditional education, dating back centuries. However, the actual efficacy of homework in enhancing learning outcomes remains disputed. A number of studies indicate that there's no conclusive evidence supporting the notion that homework improves academic performance, especially in primary education . In fact, research suggests that for younger students, the correlation between homework and academic achievement is weak or even negative .

Too much homework can often lead to increased stress and decreased enthusiasm for learning. This issue becomes particularly pressing when considering the common 'more is better' approach to homework, where the quantity of work given to students often outweighs the quality and effectiveness of the tasks. For instance, spending countless hours memorizing facts for a history test may not necessarily translate to better understanding or long-term retention of the subject matter.

However, it's worth noting that homework isn't completely devoid of benefits. It can help foster self-discipline, time management skills, and the ability to work independently. But, these positive outcomes are usually more pronounced in older students and when homework assignments are thoughtfully designed and not excessive in volume.

When discussing the merits and drawbacks of homework, it's critical to consider the nature of the assignments. Routine, repetitive tasks often associated with 'drill-and-practice' homework, such as completing rows of arithmetic problems or copying definitions from a textbook, rarely lead to meaningful learning. On the other hand, assignments that encourage students to apply what they've learned in class, solve problems, or engage creatively with the material can be more beneficial.

Increased stress

stressed student

Homework can often lead to a significant increase in stress levels among students. This is especially true when students are burdened with large volumes of homework, leaving them with little time to relax or pursue other activities. The feeling of constantly racing against the clock to meet deadlines can contribute to anxiety, frustration, and even burnout.

Contrary to popular belief, stress does not necessarily improve performance or productivity. In fact, high levels of stress can negatively impact memory, concentration, and overall cognitive function. This counteracts the very purpose of homework, which is intended to reinforce learning and improve academic outcomes.

However, one might argue that homework can teach students about time management, organization, and how to handle pressure. These are important life skills that could potentially prepare them for future responsibilities. But it's essential to strike a balance. The pressure to complete homework should not come at the cost of a student's mental wellbeing.

Limited family time

student missing their family

Homework often infringes upon the time students can spend with their families. After spending the entire day in school, children come home to yet more academic work, leaving little room for quality family interactions. This limited family time can hinder the development of important interpersonal skills and familial bonds.

Moreover, family time isn't just about fun and relaxation. It also plays a crucial role in the social and emotional development of children. Opportunities for unstructured play, family conversations, and shared activities can contribute to children's well-being and character building.

Nonetheless, advocates of homework might argue that it can be a platform for parental involvement in a child's education. While this may be true, the involvement should not transform into parental control or cause friction due to differing expectations and pressures.

Reduced physical activity

student doing homework looking outside

Homework can often lead to reduced physical activity by eating into the time students have for sports, recreation, and simply being outdoors. Physical activity is essential for children's health, well-being, and even their academic performance. Research suggests that physical activity can enhance cognitive abilities, improve concentration, and reduce symptoms of ADHD .

Homework, especially when it's boring and repetitive, can deter students from engaging in physical activities, leading to a sedentary lifestyle. This lack of balance between work and play can contribute to physical health problems such as obesity, poor posture, and related health concerns.

Homework proponents might point out that disciplined time management could allow students to balance both work and play. However, given the demanding nature of many homework assignments, achieving this balance is often easier said than done.

Negative impact on sleep

lack of sleep

A significant concern about homework is its impact on students' sleep patterns. Numerous studies have linked excessive homework to sleep deprivation in students. Children often stay up late to complete assignments, reducing the amount of sleep they get. Lack of sleep can result in a host of issues, from poor academic performance and difficulty concentrating to physical health problems like weakened immunity.

Even the quality of sleep can be affected. The stress and anxiety from a heavy workload can lead to difficulty falling asleep or restless nights. And let's not forget that students often need to wake up early for school, compounding the negative effects of late-night homework sessions.

On the other hand, some argue that homework can teach children time management skills, suggesting that effective organization could help prevent late-night work. However, when schools assign excessive amounts of homework, even the best time management might not prevent encroachment on sleep time.

Homework can exacerbate existing educational inequalities. Not all students have access to a conducive learning environment at home, necessary resources, or support from educated family members. For these students, homework can become a source of stress and disadvantage rather than an opportunity to reinforce learning.

Children from lower socio-economic backgrounds might need to contribute to household chores or part-time work, limiting the time they have for homework. This can create a gap in academic performance and grades, reflecting not on the students' abilities but their circumstances.

While homework is meant to level the playing field by providing additional learning time outside school, it often does the opposite. It's worth noting that students from privileged backgrounds can often access additional help like tutoring, further widening the gap.

Reduced creativity and independent thinking

Homework, particularly when it involves rote learning or repetitive tasks, can stifle creativity and independent thinking. Students often focus on getting the "right" answers to please teachers rather than exploring different ideas and solutions. This can hinder their ability to think creatively and solve problems independently, skills that are increasingly in demand in the modern world.

Homework defenders might claim that it can also promote independent learning. True, when thoughtfully designed, homework can encourage this. But, voluminous or repetitive tasks tend to promote compliance over creativity.

Diminished interest in learning

Overburdening students with homework can diminish their interest in learning. After long hours in school followed by more academic tasks at home, learning can begin to feel like a chore. This can lead to a decline in intrinsic motivation and an unhealthy association of learning with stress and exhaustion.

In theory, homework can deepen interest in a subject, especially when it involves projects or research. Yet, an excess of homework, particularly routine tasks, might achieve the opposite, turning learning into a source of stress rather than enjoyment.

Inability to pursue personal interests

Homework can limit students' ability to pursue personal interests. Hobbies, personal projects, and leisure activities are crucial for personal development and well-being. With heavy homework loads, students may struggle to find time for these activities, missing out on opportunities to discover new interests and talents.

Supporters of homework might argue that it teaches students to manage their time effectively. However, even with good time management, an overload of homework can crowd out time for personal interests.

Excessive workload

The issue of excessive workload is a common complaint among students. Spending several hours on homework after a full school day can be mentally and physically draining. This workload can lead to burnout, decreased motivation, and negative attitudes toward school and learning.

While homework can help consolidate classroom learning, too much can be counterproductive. It's important to consider the overall workload of students, including school, extracurricular activities, and personal time, when assigning homework.

Limited time for reflection

Homework can limit the time students have for reflection. Reflection is a critical part of learning, allowing students to digest and integrate new information. With the constant flow of assignments, there's often little time left for this crucial process. Consequently, the learning becomes superficial, and the true understanding of subjects can be compromised.

Although homework is meant to reinforce what's taught in class, the lack of downtime for reflection might hinder deep learning. It's important to remember that learning is not just about doing, but also about thinking.

Increased pressure on young children

Young children are particularly vulnerable to the pressures of homework. At an age where play and exploration are vital for cognitive and emotional development, too much homework can create undue pressure and stress. This pressure can instigate a negative relationship with learning from an early age, potentially impacting their future attitude towards education.

Advocates of homework often argue that it prepares children for the rigors of their future academic journey. However, placing too much academic pressure on young children might overshadow the importance of learning through play and exploration.

Lack of alignment with real-world skills

Traditional homework often lacks alignment with real-world skills. Assignments typically focus on academic abilities at the expense of skills like creativity, problem-solving, and emotional intelligence. These are crucial for success in the modern workplace and are often under-emphasized in homework tasks.

Homework can be an opportunity to develop these skills when properly structured. However, tasks often focus on memorization and repetition, rather than cultivating skills relevant to the real world.

Loss of motivation

Excessive homework can lead to a loss of motivation. The constant pressure to complete assignments and meet deadlines can diminish a student's intrinsic motivation to learn. This loss of motivation might not only affect their academic performance but also their love of learning, potentially having long-term effects on their educational journey.

Some believe homework instills discipline and responsibility. But, it's important to balance these benefits against the potential for homework to undermine motivation and engagement.

Disruption of work-life balance

Maintaining a healthy work-life balance is as important for students as it is for adults. Overloading students with homework can disrupt this balance, leaving little time for relaxation, socializing, and extracurricular activities. All of these are vital for a student's overall development and well-being.

Homework supporters might argue that it prepares students for the workloads they'll face in college and beyond. But it's also crucial to ensure students have time to relax, recharge, and engage in non-academic activities for a well-rounded development.

Impact on mental health

There's a growing body of evidence showing the negative impact of excessive homework on students' mental health. The stress and anxiety from heavy homework loads can contribute to issues like depression, anxiety, and even thoughts of suicide. Student well-being should be a top priority in education, and the impact of homework on mental health cannot be ignored.

While some might argue that homework helps students develop resilience and coping skills, it's important to ensure these potential benefits don't come at the expense of students' mental health.

Limited time for self-care

With excessive homework, students often find little time for essential self-care activities. These can include physical exercise, proper rest, healthy eating, mindfulness, or even simple leisure activities. These activities are critical for maintaining physical health, emotional well-being, and cognitive function.

Some might argue that managing homework alongside self-care responsibilities teaches students valuable life skills. However, it's important that these skills don't come at the cost of students' health and well-being.

Decreased family involvement

Homework can inadvertently lead to decreased family involvement in a child's learning. Parents often feel unqualified or too busy to help with homework, leading to missed opportunities for family learning interactions. This can also create stress and conflict within the family, especially when parents have high expectations or are unable to assist.

Some believe homework can facilitate parental involvement in education. But, when it becomes a source of stress or conflict, it can discourage parents from engaging in their child's learning.

Reinforcement of inequalities

Homework can unintentionally reinforce inequalities. Students from disadvantaged backgrounds might lack access to resources like private tutors or a quiet study space, placing them at a disadvantage compared to their more privileged peers. Additionally, these students might have additional responsibilities at home, further limiting their time to complete homework.

While the purpose of homework is often to provide additional learning opportunities, it can inadvertently reinforce existing disparities. Therefore, it's essential to ensure that homework doesn't favor students who have more resources at home.

Reduced time for play and creativity

Homework can take away from time for play and creative activities. These activities are not only enjoyable but also crucial for the cognitive, social, and emotional development of children. Play allows children to explore, imagine, and create, fostering innovative thinking and problem-solving skills.

Some may argue that homework teaches discipline and responsibility. Yet, it's vital to remember that play also has significant learning benefits and should be a part of every child's daily routine.

Increased cheating and academic dishonesty

The pressure to complete homework can sometimes lead to increased cheating and academic dishonesty. When faced with a large volume of homework, students might resort to copying from friends or searching for answers online. This undermines the educational value of homework and fosters unhealthy academic practices.

While homework is intended to consolidate learning, the risk of promoting dishonest behaviors is a concern that needs to be addressed.

Strained teacher-student relationships

Excessive homework can strain teacher-student relationships. If students begin to associate teachers with stress or anxiety from homework, it can hinder the development of a positive learning relationship. Furthermore, if teachers are perceived as being unfair or insensitive with their homework demands, it can impact the overall classroom dynamic.

While homework can provide an opportunity for teachers to monitor student progress, it's important to ensure that it doesn't negatively affect the teacher-student relationship.

Negative impact on family dynamics

Homework can impact family dynamics. Parents might feel compelled to enforce homework completion, leading to potential conflict, stress, and tension within the family. These situations can disrupt the harmony in the household and strain relationships.

Homework is sometimes seen as a tool to engage parents in their child's education. However, it's crucial to ensure that this involvement doesn't turn into a source of conflict or pressure.

Cultural and individual differences

Homework might not take into account cultural and individual differences. Education is not a one-size-fits-all process, and what works for one student might not work for another. Some students might thrive on hands-on learning, while others prefer auditory or visual learning methods. By standardizing homework, we might ignore these individual learning styles and preferences.

Homework can also overlook cultural differences. For students from diverse cultural backgrounds, certain types of homework might seem irrelevant or difficult to relate to, leading to disengagement or confusion.

Encouragement of surface-level learning

Homework often encourages surface-level learning instead of deep understanding. When students are swamped with homework, they're likely to rush through assignments to get them done, rather than taking the time to understand the concepts. This can result in superficial learning where students memorize information to regurgitate it on assignments and tests, instead of truly understanding and internalizing the knowledge.

While homework is meant to reinforce classroom learning, the quality of learning is more important than the quantity. It's important to design homework in a way that encourages deep, meaningful learning instead of mere rote memorization.

Related posts:

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  • General Adaptation Syndrome Theory
  • Careers in Psychology
  • The Stress Response (General Adaptation Syndome)

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IMAGES

  1. 27 Top Homework Pros and Cons (2023)

    what are the pros and cons for homework

  2. Should Students Have Homework? 8 Reasons Pro and 8 Against

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  5. 24 Top Pros and Cons of Homework

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  6. 9+ Pros And Cons Of Homework You Must Know (2023)

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COMMENTS

  1. Homework Pros and Cons

    Homework does not help younger students, and may not help high school students. We've known for a while that homework does not help elementary students. A 2006 study found that "homework had no association with achievement gains" when measured by standardized tests results or grades. [ 7]

  2. The Pros and Cons: Should Students Have Homework?

    The Pros and Cons of Homework. December 7, 2023. Share: Homework is a word that most students dread hearing. After hours upon hours of sitting in class, the last thing we want is more schoolwork over our precious weekends. While it's known to be a staple of traditional schooling, homework has also become a rather divise topic.

  3. 20 Pros and Cons of Homework

    3. It teaches time management skills. Homework goes beyond completing a task. It forces children (and parents, to some extent) to develop time management skills. Schedules must be organized to ensure that all tasks can be completed during the day. This creates independent thinking and develops problem-solving skills.

  4. 27 Top Homework Pros and Cons (2024)

    Pros and Cons of Homework (Table Summary) Pros of Homework. Cons of Homework. Pro 1: Homework teaches discipline and habit. Con 1: Homework interferes with playtime. Pro 2: Homework helps parents know what's being learned in class. Con 2: Homework interferes with extracurricular activities.

  5. The Pros and Cons of Homework

    Pro 1: Homework Helps to Improve Student Achievement. Homework teaches students various beneficial skills that they will carry with them throughout their academic and professional life, from time management and organization to self-motivation and autonomous learning. Homework helps students of all ages build critical study abilities that help ...

  6. Is homework a necessary evil?

    After decades of debate, researchers are still sorting out the truth about homework's pros and cons. One point they can agree on: Quality assignments matter. After decades of debate, researchers are still sorting out the truth about homework's pros and cons. ... "Homework that's busywork is not good for anyone," Cooper agrees. Still, he ...

  7. Pro and Con: Homework

    CON. Too much homework can be harmful. Homework disadvantages low-income students. There is a lack of evidence that homework helps younger children. This article was published on February 25, 2022, at Britannica's ProCon.org, a nonpartisan issue-information source. Some say homework improves student achievement, reinforces learning a life ...

  8. Should We Get Rid of Homework?

    The authors believe this meritocratic narrative is a myth and that homework — math homework in particular — further entrenches the myth in the minds of teachers and their students.

  9. Are You Down With or Done With Homework?

    These days, nightly homework is a given in American schools, writes Kohn. "Homework isn't limited to those occasions when it seems appropriate and important. Most teachers and administrators aren't saying, 'It may be useful to do this particular project at home,'" he writes. "Rather, the point of departure seems to be, 'We've decided ahead of ...

  10. Key Lessons: What Research Says About the Value of Homework

    Homework has been in the headlines again recently and continues to be a topic of controversy, with claims that students and families are suffering under the burden of huge amounts of homework. School board members, educators, and parents may wish to turn to the research for answers to their questions about the benefits and drawbacks of homework.

  11. 47 Pros And Cons of Homework

    The following are possible pros and cons of homework. Pros The advantages of homework are that they give students time to master the materials and to pursue essential learning such as reading books that would consume copious amounts of classtime. Homework can also cultivate independence, research, time management, planning and prioritization ...

  12. Exploring the Benefits and Drawbacks of Homework

    Homework has been a long-standing educational tradition, but it has also been a topic of debate. While some believe it reinforces learning, others argue that it adds unnecessary stress to students.In this article, we'll delve into the advantages and disadvantages of homework to provide a comprehensive understanding of its impact on students and their learning journey.

  13. Research Trends: Why Homework Should Be Balanced

    Homework Pros and Cons Homework has many benefits, ranging from higher academic performance to improved study skills and stronger school-parent connections. However, it can also result in a loss of interest in academics, fatigue, and a loss of important personal and family time.

  14. Pros and Cons of Homework: What You Should Know

    The more homework a student doe s, the better it is for their grades. 3. It increases student engagement and motivation. Homework has been proven to increase student engagement and motivation. When done correctly, homework can help students learn by engaging them in challenging tasks and helping them develop skills.

  15. Pros and Cons of Homework

    Pros. Proponents of homework present several positives: It improves student achievement - "Students in classes that were assigned homework outperformed 69% of students who didn't have homework on both standardized tests and grades.". - Britannica ProCon.

  16. List of 10 Big Pros and Cons of Homework

    List of Cons of Homework. 1. It can be stressful for the student especially for young kids. Critics argue that homework given to students especially the younger school children are too much to handle. If this is the case, homework can be a stressor instead of a motivator. If bombarded with lessons at school and even at home, children might lose ...

  17. The pros and cons of homework

    3. Pro: other benefits of homework. 4. Con: less time with family and friends. 5. Pro: parent involvement. 6. Con: stress for students and teachers. Homework should be scrapped to give children ...

  18. Is homework a good idea or not?

    Generally, people agree that homework is good idea for children in secondary school. But for primary school, it isn't clear if there's a right or wrong answer to this question. Nearly 900 of you ...

  19. 12 Pros and Cons of Homework

    One of the positive effects of homework is that it helps to encourage the discipline of practice. Repetition is necessary to get better at skills. Practising the same problem over and over helps to reinforce the discipline of practice. Homework helps make concepts more clear and helps to build a career in the future. 2.

  20. Pros and Cons of Homework: The Great Homework Debate

    The benefits of homework start to degrade after two hours for high schoolers, an hour and a half for grades 7-9, 45 minutes for grades 3-6, and 15 minutes for grade k-2. So instead of getting rid of homework altogether, teachers can focus on assigning a reasonable amount of what really matters. Pros and Cons of Homework: The Bad

  21. TIME for Kids

    (For more on the pros and cons of homework, see "Do Kids Need Homework?") GETTY IMAGES Finding a Balance Harris Cooper is a professor at Duke University. He has reviewed more than 50 studies on homework. In his view, homework has a positive effect on learning. "The effect gets larger as kids move through the grades.

  22. The Pros and Cons of Homework: Is Homework Really Worth It?

    The Bottom Line - Pros and Cons of Homework. Is assigning homework beneficial or hurtful? Every subject, teacher, and circumstance is different. Homework can be a mainly positive item for some students and mainly a negative item for other students. The reason why it is such a debate is that a teacher is assigning homework for an entire class ...

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