“I like a teacher who gives you something to take home to think about besides homework.” By Lily Tomlin

For a long time I ignored the homework debate. I would hear parents complain how there wasn’t enough time after school for homework due to their kids schedules. I listened but secretly thought, ‘I did homework when I was a kid and I played sports, was in girl scouts and I managed or at least my parents managed my schedule.’

Before parents didn’t question homework the teacher assigned it, the student did it, end of story. I was reading articles on my favorite app, Zite and I noticed many of the articles were related to the homework debate. I decided to not ignore it anymore as it had also been a “hot topic” at our school meetings as well because our state added 45 mins on to our day. (Which I agree with as now we are the same as other states but wish the added time was reflected in our pay.)

After reading many articles on both sides I came to the decision that we need to change our mind sets as educators if there should or shouldn’t be homework but look at the quality of homework. We need to really ask our selves, ‘Is the homework making a difference in the student’s education?’

Giving homework teaches self-discipline and time management, two very important skills. We, as educators, need to be giving students, authentic homework. We need to pose a question for the students to ponder (which is why I love the quote I started
with) and let them answer it via blogging, Edmodo or another site where the students can be critical thinkers, creative, collaborate and communicate as all these skills make up a 21st century learner. This is why I like the flipped classroom so much. (See my previous blog on Flipped Classroom below) We need to turn homework into a catalyst for learning!

I am curious to know what other teachers, educators and schools philosophies are about homework. Are you, as an educator, shifting your homework policy to fit the needs of our 21st century learners?


Comments on: "To Give or Not to Give Homework That is the Question…or Is It?" (4)

  1. I used to think about this all the time … & Then …. I finally made a decision (it was about time for me! teehee!) & posted a blog:
    my 2 cents 😉 http://ht.ly/76aFH
    & like you: I love the flipped classroom approach!

  2. technology_tim said:

    It is funny you bring this up this week! Just this week I started doing some research on Montessori Education because a couple of our friends in our District send their students to Montessori Schools in Our district. One of the aspects of Montessori schools is they give NO HOMEWORK.

    Talking to one co-worker he said his son always came home from Montessori with a “story” to tell… but now that he is in a traditional setting… sadly it is sucking the fun out of school…

    Another co-worker shared this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GcgN0lEh5IA. In our district we have 3 Elementary Schools and 1 Middle School that are Montessori, and I wanted to see how things really work in them.

    These classes always make the highest scores, and all without homework. This comes down to the QUALITY of the education the student is getting to begin with. Raising that curiosity within the student to WANT to learn.

  3. I personally would rather not give any homework. I think it is adding to the teacher’s stress, the student’s stress and is not necessary. My friend did a study during her master’s program and it was called, “Does Homework Help With Math Mastery?” Her results were no. The top kids usually got it right away, the middle kids usually got it the second time and the low kids needed help that they didn’t usually get at home.

    Here are the stats for the average length of the day. CMS extended the time, not the state. My kids still go the same amount of time in Cabarrus County.


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