Is homework improving students' understanding of mathematical concepts, or just their familiarity with test-taking?
Story continues below advertisement Homework is a key issue for parents. Globe readers weighed in: As a high school science teacher, I do believe a moderate amount of homework is a good thing. Thanks to the Internet, it doesn't really allow me to see my students' comprehension, but it does allow me to teach them other skills that are important in life — time management, when to ask questions, working hard, etc. No two schools are run the same way, no two teachers teach in the same way and no two students learn the same way.
Let us remember that being give equitable opportunities is very different than being given equal opportunities. Borges, TorontoHere is our most recent, exasperating example of "project homework. As parents we helped out a ridiculous amount in terms of sourcing and obtaining the plants, aquarium and assorted supplies, and I have low expectations of the fish living due to the tight time frame to set up the equipment.
I have no clear concept of what the teacher is hoping to achieve. The class did the project in pairs and will now have 15 or so terrariums and aquariums plugged in around the classroom for the next 90 days. Maybe keeping spiders, beetles, fish and plants alive will impart a higher level of understanding. Despite the weak correlation between homework and performance for young children, Cooper argues that a small amount of homework is useful for all students. Cathy Vatterott, an education professor at the University of Missouri-St.
The issue has been debated for decades. The ensuing pressure to be competitive on a global scale, plus the increasingly demanding college admissions process, fueled the practice of assigning homework.
If you take too much, they can kill you. I write about retooling K education to address social inequality. But maybe teachers just need to assign a different kind of homework. In , a second-grade teacher in Texas delighted her students—and at least some of their parents—by announcing she would no longer assign homework. And psychologists have identified a range of strategies that help students learn, many of which seem ideally suited for homework assignments.
Bangert-Drowns, R. The instructional effects of feedback in test-like events. Review of Educational Research, 61 2 , — Bennett, S.
The case against homework: How homework is hurting our children and what we can do about it. New York: Crown. Bloom, B. The search for methods of group instruction as effective as one-toone tutoring. Educational Leadership, 41 8 , 4— Cooper, H.
White Plains, NY: Longman. Synthesis of research on homework. Educational Leadership, 47 3 , 85— The battle over homework 3rd ed. Does homework improve academic achievement? A synthesis of research, — Review of Educational Research, 76 1 , 1— Corno, L. Homework is a complicated thing. Educational Researcher, 25 8 , 27— Epstein, J.
School, family, and community partnerships: Preparing educators and improving schools. Boulder, CO: Westview. Teachers' reported practices of parent involvement: Problems and possibilities. Elementary School Journal, 83, — Fraser, B.
Synthesis of educational productivity research [Special issue]. International Journal of Educational Research, 11 2 , — Gill, B.
The lost cause of homework reform. American Journal of Education, , 27— Good, T. Looking in classrooms 9th ed. Graue, M. School-based home instruction and learning: A quantitative synthesis. Journal of Educational Research, 76, — Hattie, J. Measuring the effects of schooling. Australian Journal of Education, 36 1 , 5—While there is no tools on the effectiveness of. Prisoners of effective. To make sure that homework is appropriate, teachers should children, and limits homework. In contrast to large-scale testing, much writing assessment is. I write about retooling K education to address social inequality. The end of homework: How homework disrupts families, overburdens follow these guidelines: Assign purposeful homework.
While those things may be true, not assigning homework—or assigning ineffective homework—can end up privileging advantaged students even more. The class did the project in pairs and will now have 15 or so terrariums and aquariums plugged in around the classroom for the next 90 days. Grade Level Although teachers across the K—12 spectrum commonly assign homework, research has produced no clear-cut consensus on the benefits of homework at the early elementary grade levels. Most of the studies deal with the United States and Europe. Story continues below advertisement Kids need to play after school, childhood obesity is skyrocketing, only eight per cent of kids are active between 3 and 6 p. All three of the books criticizing homework provide compelling anecdotes to this effect.
Bloom, B. Legitimate purposes for homework include introducing new content, practicing a skill or process that students can do independently but not fluently, elaborating on information that has been addressed in class to deepen students' knowledge, and providing opportunities for students to explore topics of their own interest. Thus, 5 to 10 minutes per subject might be appropriate for 4th graders, whereas 30 to 60 minutes might be appropriate for college-bound high school students. Get the best of Edutopia in your inbox each week. Some studies have reported minimal positive effects or even negative effects for parental involvement. I write about retooling K education to address social inequality.
When Rob Young, a single father, saw what his son's Grade 5 classmates had constructed — including a castle built entirely of meticulously glued rows of bite-sized cereal — he decided his family was done with homework. Review of Educational Research, 76 1 , 1— The Cooper synthesis a reported that for junior high school students, the benefits increased as time increased, up to 1 to 2 hours of homework a night, and then decreased. If the anti-homework brigade succeeds, however, it would fly in the face of research that suggests that the right kind of homework can help to drive student achievement. Some classrooms become "pressure cookers for achievement" where standardized test scores drive learning, demanding mounds of math worksheets and book reports from children, says Heather Blair, a professor of language and literacy education at the University of Alberta.
The issue has been debated for decades. In Reforming Homework, the academics comment on the differing conclusions reached by the studies.
Wallis, C. Parents ask questions that help students clarify and summarize what they have learned. Journal of Research and Development in Education, 31 3 , — Yet repeated visits to the medical journals themselves can leave a much different impression. Homework is a perfect example: Figure 1 includes synthesis studies that go back as far as 60 years, yet all that research translates to a handful of recommendations articulated at a very general level.