Removing Homework will Hurt Students in the Long Run
There is a growing movement around the world where people are considering removing homework. They argue that it is hurting the students’ lives more than it is helping as it takes away time from family and gives students too much stress.
The problem, however, is that removing homework will hurt students in the long run. So here are a few suggestions for naysayers to ponder.
- Students will not be disciplined for college or work
Homework develops discipline. Part of this includes prioritizing tasks over fun activities and time management. By the time a student graduates from high school, he or she will be more prepared for the rigors of college life, where assignments are of even greater importance, or work, where daily tasks take priority over personal concerns. Thus, taking away homework is a great disservice to children around the world.
- An issue may be the kind of homework that is assigned
A common complaint is that homework does not help students improve academically, making it a waste of time. Some, however, say the real problem is that teachers are not assigning the right kind of homework. Experts have found many other good ways of learning that are more effective than simply rereading one’s notes or the book. Techniques like retrieval practice (where students list down what was learned) allow them to remember more than rereading. The problem is that many teachers are not aware of such techniques, which is why their assignments may be ineffective.
- Some students do not have the equipment
In connection with 2, sometimes homework favors the wealthier students. A lot of assignments now require online research or computer graphics. Unfortunately, not all students have regular access to a computer. Schools can provide computers for such students, or teachers can consider not always requiring such tasks if not all of their students have computer access.
- Standardized tests might not be fair
Standardized exams are what many institutions claim to be the benchmark for students’ abilities. The problem with this is that such tests may not fairly assess students. Some teachers give great assignments that allow students to look at an issue in depth. But if the standardized test has a topic that the student is not familiar with, then such unfamiliarity can affect their final score.
- Some schools just focus on standardized tests
One final reason why homework is “not working” is because teachers are focused on these standardized tests. Since passing such tests becomes the goal of a school to proclaim their students are on par with others, sometimes other subjects aren’t given due importance. The result is that students may be good at math and reading, but they don’t know much about science, history, and writing. So it is not the assignments that are hurting students, but the focus of the school.
Learning is not easy, which is why students need homework to recall their lessons and practice. So instead of removing it, educators should consider how they are assigning tasks and what focus their school has so that they can ensure the assignments they are giving are the right type for learning.