A recent study, published in The American Journal of Family Therapy concludes:
“Students in the early elementary school years are getting nearly three times as much homework than is recommended by education leaders”
According to CNN, parents reported first-graders were spending 28 minutes on homework each night versus the recommended 10 minutes.
What are the potential consequences of this gross overload?
Let’s start with the recommended standard.
“The standard, endorsed by the National Education Association and the National Parent-Teacher Association, is the so-called “10-minute rule” — 10 minutes per grade level per night. That translates into 10 minutes of homework in the first grade, 20 minutes in the second grade, all the way up to 120 minutes for senior year of high school.”
WARNING: Anything above that standard can have grave consequences …
The data shows that homework over this level is not only not beneficial to children’s grades or GPA, but there’s really a plethora of evidence that it’s detrimental to their attitude about school, their grades, their self-confidence, their social skills and their quality of life.”
Quality of life?
Yep … “children don’t want to be doing homework, they want to be out playing, they want to be interacting and that’s what they should be doing. That’s what’s really important.”
News flash: Children prefer playing to school work.
And, what about stress on families and parents?
Parents say that they don’t like to nag their kids about doing their homework, and suffer from low esteem if they’re unable to help them.
Of course, the parental sense of confidence increases (a) if there is a parent (or 2) in the household, and (b) if the parent (or parents) has completed high school (or college).
Which leads to the only logical conclusion:
“All of our results indicate that homework as it is now being assigned discriminates against children whose parents don’t have a college degree.”
So, to level the playing field, take intact families and involved parents out of the education process.
And then, blame schools and teachers, and ask why the U.S. is 27th in the world in math & science.
P.S. Over the weekend, I heard about a Baltimore County elementary school that not only gives students homework … but requires that a responsible adult (preferably a parent) sign the completed assignment