Homework
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When Homework is a Waste of Time - TIME

When Homework is a Waste of Time - TIME | Homework | Scoop.it
When Homework is a Waste of Time TIME Although surveys show that the amount of time our children spend on homework has risen over the past three decades, American students are mired in the middle of international academic rankings: 17th in reading,...
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Laura Jane's curator insight, December 15, 2013 10:09 PM

What an insightful article! This TIME article ties perfectly into the "great homework debate" that has been going on amongst educators for the past couple of decades. The article states that despite the increasing number of hours that we're expecting students to spend on after-school academic activities, we are slipping in international educational ratings. We are now considered to be [internationally] 17th in reading, 23rd in science, and 31st in math. These statistics make it seem like maybe our well intended activities aren't producing effective results.

 

In a 2008 study, a third of parents rated the quality of their childrens' homework as "fair to poor." 4 of 10 parents said that they believed their childrens' homework was merely busy work. If we don't put thought and effort into the homework we are assigning as teachers, how can we expect our students to get anything out of it?

 

This article then discusses some new techniques from Washington University that we can implement in our own homework assigning. The first ofthese is "spaced repetition." This is a method in which student encounter the same information, but in smaller doses, and spread over an extended period of time. This is thought to be effective becasue it re-exposes students to information about the same topics throughout an entire semester, and is a more authentic approach to education. According to this method, an INEFFECTIVE homework assignment would be to read about the Civil War for 2 nights, complete homework and assessments about the Civil War, and then never talk about it again. An EFFECTIVE homework assignment would be to have students talking about minor details of the Civil War throughout the semester, and eventually being able to bring all of those little details together in order to form a big picture idea.

 

My final takeaway from this article is the concept of cognitive disfluency. We often believe that we have best mastered concepts that came easily to us right away. However, we actually learn something better the more we struggle with it. Deeper understanding of a topic comes from roots of confusion and frustration. I think that this is something that we need to begin to focus on more with homework. Instead of simply praising students who "get" a topic right away, we should be focusing on getting the students who didn't "get" it to a point where they do understand it. This involves re-teaching and assessing individual needs. If we do this, we will create much more effective homework, resulting in much more effective learning.

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The great homework debate: Too much, too little or busy work? - CNN

The great homework debate: Too much, too little or busy work? - CNN | Homework | Scoop.it
The great homework debate: Too much, too little or busy work?
CNN
(CNN) -- And I thought Miley Cyrus' performance at the VMAs generated a ton of opinions.
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Parents split on no homework policy at CA school - WFSB

Parents split on no homework policy at CA school - WFSB | Homework | Scoop.it
Parents split on no homework policy at CA school
WFSB
The teacher is sending home a type of homework. It's more based on the parent being more involved, I think, which is better. It's reading every night," parent Sarah Shoffaer said.
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Poor Students Need Homework - The Atlantic

Poor Students Need Homework - The Atlantic | Homework | Scoop.it
The Atlantic
Poor Students Need Homework
The Atlantic
Karl Taro Greenfeld, a good and wise parent, wants less homework for his daughter. He laments that she is becoming “a sleep-deprived teen zombie.” My daughter, too.
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Homework 101 - LIFE 88.5

Homework 101 - LIFE 88.5 | Homework | Scoop.it
According to research done at John Hopkins University, 87% of parents have a positive view of helping with homework, and see it as a beneficial way to spend time with their kids. In truth, helping with homework isn't always a ...
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11 Hilariously Creative Homework Responses - TheFW

11 Hilariously Creative Homework Responses - TheFW | Homework | Scoop.it
Homework isn't all that bad! That's because kids make it way less boring by being straight up and honest (read: hilarious).
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