How much homework is too much? Everyday student stays up very late to finishing their homework. After a stressful day in school, after hard practise for school or another sports team and maybe some hours of work, they come home and the only thing they want to do is going to bed. But they can’t because they have to do a bunch of homework. An average student gets every about 30 minutes of homework a day per class. If one has 7 periods a day, that makes 3 and a half hours of homework every night! Imagine the worst case: (show visual numbers 1 and 3) you stand up at 6 o’clock in the morning to get ready for school. Then you have school from 7.20 am to 3.10 pm, afterwards you go directly to your sports practice which ends at about 5.30 or 6.00 pm.
But maybe you have to work to attend college, purchase clothes or other everyday needs. Thus you work for 2 to 3 hours every night. When you arrive home, have eaten dinner and so on, it’s 9.30 pm and then you start doing your homework for 3 and a half hours. So you can go to sleep at 1.00 am and sleep for only 5 hours before you have to get up for another stressful day. But 5 hours of sleep aren’t enough! (Show Visual Number 2) On this table, you can see, that the human body of 15 to 18 years old needs between 8 and 9 hours of sleep every day. Sleep, after drinking and eating, is the most important thing for our body because while you’re sleeping, the body restores itself for the next day.
Prices start at $12
Prices start at $11
Prices start at $12
So how much homework is ok? Nothing? One hour per day? Two hours? I think you can’t give a specific answer to this question, but I think the amount of homework given in the schools is too much. A study from the year 1996 states that the amount of homework assigned isn’t an indicator for the academic performance of a student. Sure it is important like many people say, to review things you learned in school at home, but this can’t be forced by bigger amounts of homework. The student should have the choice of reviewing and repeating his subjects. So if he thinks he understood everything in school and didn’t need to review this by doing exercises, then he shouldn’t be forced to do this, and if he made the wrong decision then he will notice this on his decreasing grades!
Another argument for more homework is, that it prepares you for college and later life, but before all it is important for children and students in the years they are going to school, to have time for other important things, like family, more sleep or sports activities. Now one could say that you could gain more time by cancelling one of the other activities, but I think that activities like sports, taking part in other clubs or serving for the community is more important than the homework to develop a well-rounded personality. Before all sport and sleep are very important things because health should have priority over the finished math exercises. With more time because of less homework, students would have more time for their family, friends and things like taking part in school or other clubs, which is also important for college applications.
Some students have to go working, even on the weekends to earn money, for college or other important things, with less homework they would have less stress and healthier life. Going to work is also important for them, to learn how to be independent with money and how to use it wisely, which is a more important lecture for life than homework. Another argument is, that when the students would have less homework, they would do the homework they have better because they have more time. When one gets 20 tasks and it’s very late and he gets tired, then one will probably try to finish the work as soon as possible and will make mistakes. But with less homework, he would do the tasks more carefully. Another point is that with less homework, the number of books the students have to carry home would decrease and their bags wouldn’t be so heavy. Physicians say that the weight of a backpack is supposed to be only 10% of the weight of the person who carries it!
Another counterargument is, that with a lot of homework teacher has more time in class to give explanations, but the classroom is the perfect place to practice the things you learned because you have all the materials there and you can ask the teacher for help when you didn’t understand something. And if you didn’t understand something in class then you won’t learn it by doing it as homework, because nobody is there to explain it for you and if you have more time in the evening because you don’t have to do so much homework, you have more time for studying and so the students could improve their knowledge and grades.
The result I draw from this is that the advantages for students and teachers of less homework outweigh the disadvantages. Now it is important to find the right amount. You can’t say any homework at all is the best, because there are several things which have to be done at home or which are important to repeat as homework, but I think the key for less homework is to change the kind of homework which is given. It would be better to give homework, where the students learn something while doing it, then finishing 60 tasks in your book where you only do the same and the same again! So I think the recipe is to have homework from which you can learn, not simply to waste our time!