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Homework and Students

Students spend hours doing it, teachers spend hours checking it. Homework is sometimes a burden to teachers and students but still it is necessary. Some people doubt homework’s effectiveness, but teachers and researchers agree homework is essential. Homework helps students get better grades in school. Some people don’t know exactly what homework is. Homework is defined as an out of class activity assigned to students as an extension or elaboration of classroom work(KidSource). There are three types of homework teachers generally give out.

The first is Practice assignments, they are assignments that reinforce newly acquired skills or knowledge(KidSource). An example of these assignments is writing definitions down for new words learned in school. The second form of homework is preparation Assignments (KidSource). This is basically finding information and preparing it for a class demonstration or discussion. The third would be extension assignments, these assignments encourage individualized and creative learning(KidSource).

These assignments are basically essays, reports, and projects. Extension assignments require students to apply previous learnings(ERIC). These assignments are the three components that make up what we call homework. Parents, students, and teachers all sometimes wonder how useful is homework? Though studies examining the relationship between homework and school achievement have been inclusive(ERIC). Still many teachers and researchers still agree that homework helps students achieve higher grades in school.

Schools that assigned homework frequently showed higher student achievement than schools that assigned little homework(ERIC). This means that homework is working. Studies have generally found that if teachers carefully plan homework, homework can be quite helpful(KidSource). Homework has proven its effectiveness and is a very powerful factor in student performance. Students should only spend enough time on homework so that the subject is reinforced and not just a waste of time.

The national PTA suggest that from K-3 grades there should be no more than 20 minutes a day, for 4-6 grades there should be 20-40 minutes of homework, and from 7-12 grades time varies do to types of subjects and number of subjects taken(KidSource). Anymore than these recommended amount of times is seen excessive by the national PTA. Surprisingly U. S. students are working as hard as Asians: 24% of eighth graders do more then two hour of homework compared to Japans 28% and Germanys 17%(Brimelow108). Are we working to hard, researchers don’t think so, U. S. student grades are improving.

As of 1996 one in every sixth grader does more than an hour of homework every night(KidSource). The national PTA thinks this is an extreme for fourth graders. Homework time will increase but so will student achievement. Developing homework policies can be tough for teachers and schools. When considering homework policies you should answer these questions, what kind of homework is most effective, how much homework is appropriate, at what age level is homework useful, who is responsible for deciding how much homework to assign, and who is responsible for monitoring homework(ERIC)?

When all these questions are answered correctly the outcome is an effective and productive homework policy. The future of homework is uncertain, some say it will increase, and some say it will decrease. According to a interview in the New York times, Daria Doering, founder of www. sanehomework. com, points out that homework manias have come and gone before, “It’s just one of those educational fashions,” she says(Brimelow108).

No one knows for sure if homework has any educational values but for now teachers and principal just hope there is. Parents should be involved and encourage students, and help them with their homework(ERIC). Homework has helped many students do better in school. Even though there is no conclusive research backing the benefits of homework, both teachers and parents agree that homework helps. Homework has become a part of education that has become irreplaceable and will affect student’s lives in ways we cannot measure.

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