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  #1    
Old November 19th, 2012, 02:45 PM
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This is pretty intriguing to me as I'm currently writing a paper about it.

Honestly I think it'd be best if we adopt French educational policies. I don't see anything wrong with longer school hours in lieu of banning homework. My school used to get out at 2 pm, keeping students in school until 5 or 6 pm would not only help educate them in a school setting but would be easier for parents to pick them up from school with those hours as well, without concern for babysitters or making sure they get home alright, particularly for elementary level students.
  #2    
Old November 19th, 2012, 02:52 PM
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On one hand I think it would be a good idea. It would eliminate a lot of stress and pressure, and possibly improve grades because people wouldn't be able to procrastinate their work anymore. On the other hand it gives people less freedom to plan in their homework, planning is very important and homework throughout school kind of teaches you how to do it and it's beneficial for the future. And they would also have much longer days at school, and kids would maybe lose their concentration much quicker than usual this way which in its turn is also disadvantageous so I'm not sure if on the long run this would work, but I suppose it also depends on the individual.
  #3    
Old November 19th, 2012, 02:57 PM
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I think its primary target would be students in elementary school. I remember reading a statistic for this essay that 40-something% of the elementary student's parents do their child's homework when they're in elementary school. It really has no effect on their education; personally I can't remember a single homework assignment I did when I was in elementary school.

Around intermediate (5th-6th grade) and above level is where I can see conflicts with the ban, though, as homework actually becomes beneficial around that age.

Last edited by Mochi; November 26th, 2012 at 05:08 PM.
  #4    
Old November 19th, 2012, 03:01 PM
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Longer school hours? Do you honestly think anyone would go for that? From what I've understood... the U.S.A. has some of the longest school days around... and the lowest test scores. Adding more to school would simply further create a divide between the intent of learning and the result. Also.. not all parents get off of work around 5-6... so the notion that it'd be easier is another false one. I, myself, go to school at 8 until three. That is 7 hours. Accounting an hour travel time... that is 8 hours. Assuming I go to bed at ten... that leaves me 6 hours of my day to actually do stuff OF MY OWN CHOICE. With homework... I get roughly another two hours(sometimes more) a night. That brings the total time of school up to 10 hours, as would your extension of school. So I would have 14 hours(including sleep) to do what I wanted. Going to bed at ten.... that leaves me with roughly 6 hours. To do all that I *WANT* to do, PLUS all of my other, non-academic commitments. Sports, etc. If I was an athlete.. that'd be around another two hours for practice a day... leaving only 12 hours in your day. 8 of which are supposed to be sleeping. Which would leave 4 hours to do chores, etc. etc. The only to get more of such time would be at the expense of sleep, which schools denotes as thoroughly important.

My point? School is FAR too time consuming as is. Adding more time only inhibits learning as it increases contempt with the system.

Homework is a very fickle thing. If done right, the results are astounding. If done wrong... the results are disastrous. I know from personal experience that doing my homework prepared me for the tests. But I also know... that if I did that homework WRONG, it would have only brought my results from the test down by cementing that idea in my brain. Compare it to sports. If you don't know how to swing a ball at a bat, and your coach tells you to go home and practice... well you're screwed. You're most likely not going to adopt the proper position or go about it in the proper way... unless your coach shows you how it is done. Homework is the same, but with teachers. And THAT is the argument that the French president is making.
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Last edited by von Weltschmerz; November 19th, 2012 at 03:50 PM.
  #5    
Old November 19th, 2012, 03:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AzaleaLightning View Post
I think its primary target would be students in elementary school. I remember reading a statistic for this essay that 47% of parents do their child's homework when they're in elementary school. It really has no effect on their education; personally I can't remember a single homework assignment I did when I was in elementary school.

Around intermediate (5th-6th grade) and above level is where I can see conflicts with the ban, though, as homework actually becomes beneficial around that age.
Yeah I agree with you on that, they should at least introduce it in elementary school, homework made it very hard for me to keep up there. I don't think I ever properly did it haha.
  #6    
Old November 19th, 2012, 03:11 PM
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He also argues that students have unfair advantages depending on their home life. Some students have wealthy engineer/doctor/executive parents who can help them, while others are less fortunate and have parents who have no college degree or work extensively and have little time for their children. I also go on the standard 9-5 work schedule for parents, there are always exceptions but it's fruitless to argue that in these types of propositions. The point is to combat inequality among students and reduce the amount of students who flunk grades.

Also, French schools have extensively longer hours than American schools, with the exception of only going to school four days a week. While this would likely not be accepted here, it does allow time for homework. American schools in comparison actually have pretty short hours.

You say that it takes you roughly two hours (or more) to do your homework. Now take that assigned work and assign it in class where you have classmates, teachers, or teacher aides to help you. You would finish it in faster time, and still have time to review the topic to better learn it. If you're educated in it, test scores would improve.

Also, French students also have one-two hours of lunch. Personally I would have loved to have that schedule when I was in K12, as I felt 20-30 minutes for lunch left me cramming my food and no time to socialize with friends. Of course there are also cultural differences as I recall French students do not emphasize extracurricular sports in school, as you mentioned something about sports.
  #7    
Old November 19th, 2012, 03:16 PM
von Weltschmerz
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The class time is not as beneficial as you think. I have one teacher per class. No aides. And I am among the smartest in my entire school. I'm in advanced courses, thus the length of my work. If I was in the basic courses... homework would not pose any concern to me. If help is needed, I'm giving it, not receiving it. The only thing school offers to me is the distraction of a bunch of idiots and the incompetence of most of the teachers. Although, that is me. I'm sure there are others who would find it different, and agree with your claim.

I agree with you that the homework system needs a entire revamp... but is there a rational way to go about this that will help everyone? Or in the very least help most people while not providing a detriment to those that it does not help? I suppose that homework could be offered only to those who believe they need extra practice? But then how is a teacher supposed to fit that into their schedule? I mean.. some years I imagine them getting no homework requests, and others... they get a bunch. They would not be able to account for the interest. I suppose then, that they would have to take more of their personal time to grade this optional work. But aren't teachers already underpaid for their work...? I do not see a close end to this all.
  #8    
Old November 19th, 2012, 03:17 PM
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Originally Posted by von Weltschmerz View Post
Longer school hours? Do you honestly think anyone would go for that? From what I've understood... the U.S.A. has some of the longest school days around... and the lowest test scores.
Uh? Where are you getting this? The article linked already lists France as having longer days. Japan and China both have longer days. In addition, the US has a very low amount of days of the year where we're in school.

In addition, according to the latest PISA assessment, we are nowhere near the bottom in any category. I'm not sure where you're getting these claims that you're making.
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  #9    
Old November 19th, 2012, 03:28 PM
von Weltschmerz
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Originally Posted by Toujours View Post
Uh? Where are you getting this? The article linked already lists France as having longer days. Japan and China both have longer days. In addition, the US has a very low amount of days of the year where we're in school.

In addition, according to the latest PISA assessment, we are nowhere near the bottom in any category. I'm not sure where you're getting these claims that you're making.
Okay, I recant such a statement. I would not be against a longer school year for the U.S., just longer days. Honestly, if I had my way.. school would be year round. I made my second claim based on a commercial I saw way back when saying that although the U.S. fell short in its academic categories, they surpassed every other country in "confidence." I suppose I didn't mean so much "lowest" as I did "nothing special." Countries that have longer hours fall both above, and below the U.S. on that ranking.

My point with that last statement is to say that there is another cause for academic excellence. And that, I believe, is the pressure put on students. In America we forever preach, "It doesn't matter how good you did... all that matters is that you tried your best." And that attitude stunts academic growth because it relates to students that they don't have to try, because even if they don't do good... they will still be accepted. Which isn't exactly a false notion... but it destroys the notion that intelligence and good work are things to be valued... because someone who doesn't have these can be just as good as someone who does. And that notion, sadly enough, is false. They have to wake up and smell the coffee some day.

Last edited by von Weltschmerz; November 19th, 2012 at 03:38 PM.
  #10    
Old November 20th, 2012, 03:27 AM
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I'm for this let every one March to the board of ed in pajamas and protest in unison i would have a 90 averge if it wasn't for HW
  #11    
Old November 20th, 2012, 05:02 AM
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A big fallacy in the education reform debate is the belief that longer school days/years translates to better education. More quantity is not a substitute for lack of quality.
  #12    
Old November 20th, 2012, 10:18 AM
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I'm gonna kinda agree with Freaky here. Before debating whether we should have longer school days or anything like that we need to address the quality of our schools. How well trained are the teachers? What are the class sizes? How much funding do the schools have? I live in California and we have a pretty miserable set of circumstances as far as education goes, with huge classes, not very well paid teachers, and one of the shortest school years in the country.

I don't really know how other places measure up. I have seen how the education system works in Japan where they do have longer school days (partially because of school clubs and a high percentage of club membership), but they also have homework. They seem to turn out good students, but I couldn't say if banning homework would affect things one way or the other.

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Old November 20th, 2012, 06:22 PM
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keeping students in school until 5 or 6 pm
Hell no, I'd rather homework.
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  #14    
Old November 20th, 2012, 06:34 PM
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I heard that they wanted to make homework illegal in Canada.

I'd love that any day tbh.

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  #15    
Old November 20th, 2012, 09:36 PM
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As someone studying primary/elementary education I find this an intriguing topic. Specifically speaking towards younger students (grades 1-7 ish)

Homework doesn't benefit people nearly as much as people seem to think it does. It is far more effective to have good formative assessment practices in the classroom than it is to give homework which is easy to cheat on or get ridiculous amounts of help on. In class formative assessment (both formal and informal) gives a far more accurate representation of the abilities of a student so the teacher knows what needs improvement before the summative assessment.

As for longer school hour, also a bad idea. The longer you make students learn the harder it is for them to pay attention and the less information they retain.

High School is a different matter though.
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  #16    
Old November 21st, 2012, 05:46 PM
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In my personal opinion, Homework should be banned everywhere. (as weird as it sounds.)


NOT because I don't like homework, as one might think, but more-so because there's a reason we go to School everyday. I should probably go more in-depth.

I first started thinking this when I was in middle school and I grew on it more in high school before I inevitably graduated and gained my freedom.

Basically... I always thought that.. if the State Law claimed that you HAD to be schooled (whether it be home-schooling or public/private schooling) for like 6 hours every weekday, then you're already gaining a great deal of knowledge from a single week of school ALONE. Judging that you're getting all this knowledge, I figured that Homework was only counter-productive to a school system since they're just essentially trying to extend your lesson outside of the classroom.

Judging that they enforce this in most schools, I always assumed that it would be FAR less counter-productive to be home-schooled instead since if School was going to extend after-hours, then there would be no point to a school since they don't adhere to the freedom that the Children/Teenagers are SUPPOSED to be given after-hours.

I sorta think the same way with after-school detention. I always thought of punishment in a school system to be perfectly fine, but the fact that they have control of your schedule AFTER hours is just borderline ridiculous.

I know In Loco Parentis is in effect during school hours (which essentially gives a staff the responsibility to care after the students), but that's only in effect UNTIL the school day ends. Therefore, after-school detention is essentially bypassing that law, and forcefully keeping you in school without having the right to do so. Therefore, it's a more buttered-up version of kidnapping.

I was probably the only one in my entire School which thought this all up, and until NOW, I have said nothing about it just to avoid risking embarrassment. I know it sounds silly, but I thought it all out, and I've come to that base conclusion.

However, there are still probably other laws I've never studied which counter the laws that I've listed which School Boards have 'technically' broken. I just don't know of them.. therefore I only made an accurate assumption under my own scenario.

/endwalloftext


Sorry about that huge wall of text, I just thought I'd share my views since this thread seems to revolve around it.

(In case you didn't want to read the whole thing, most of my text is just stuff that I extended on from the whole 'Homework Banning' thing.)
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  #17    
Old November 22nd, 2012, 10:20 PM
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I'm neutral to the matter, though leaning toward "no".
At least if a student has homework, they're able to be around their family in the doing.

Then again, being Homeschooled means I myself have never experienced going to a public school. I do have homework sometimes, though.
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Old November 23rd, 2012, 02:08 AM
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I like the idea of getting rid of it in early education - mainly because, really, homework doesn't matter at all at that point since it's not really teaching anything and with the amount of help that most parents give their kids with it, it probably isn't worthwhile. Later on, though, when the parents will be helping less and the education actually matters, hell no do not ban homework. If it'll help kids learn then by all means, use it.

Really the workload both in and out of school below a more advanced level i.e. these "AP Classes" which I always hear you Americans talking about or actual university degrees isn't nearly as bad as people make it out to be and an hour or two of solid concentration per day outside of lesson times can easily consolidate what you learned earlier that day. If, with the relatively short school hours that most (note: most) kids have, they still find themselves unable to dedicate a simple hour or two to their work then they're either prioritising their use of time wrongly or are just plain lazy, unless there are exceptional circumstances like being a child carer or something like that, but that's a whooooooole different case which needs approaching differently. As for the earlier mentioned higher-level stuff, if you're studying a subject at a higher level and you're complaining about the workload to the point where you want homework which you know will help you banned, then it's really time to reconsider whether or not you actually should be doing that subject.

Regarding longer school hours in favour of banning homework - no. I don't think the quality vs quantity argument here is really relevant since homework and lessons are intended for completely different purposes; lessons are to teach new information, homework is to consolidate existing information. If homework was there to teach you something new (which, on rare occasion, I suppose it is) then fine. Maybe extra lessons would be an option. But there's no real point that I can see of replacing something with something else made to fit a totally different purpose.

Bottom line is that I don't think homework is as big an issue as it's made out to be and I definitely don't think there's any good reason to ban it. However, I get that some kids just won't do it anyway. I was definitely one of those kids for a loooooong time lol, although not really any more. So I feel like if homework's not done then it should be at the kid's own choice. If they want to harm their education, let them. By all means encourage homework but remove forms of punishment, failing (although in England you'll never fail a course because you didn't do its homework and I think it's ridiculous that any education system can allow that to happen), etc., from students not doing homework. It essentially becomes optional. I know that it's likely that the majority of students won't do optional homework, but really, is that a bad thing? It sets the students who really want to work and really want to get somewhere in later education apart from those who don't. I don't see a problem there given that it's the purpose that lower education systems are made for.

tl;dr don't ban homework because it's unnecessary to do that. Make it optional but encouraged instead.

disclaimer: I am talking with regards to the education system which I know here. Maybe something here wouldn't fit well into an American system or otherwise, idk.
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  #19    
Old November 23rd, 2012, 03:46 AM
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I sort of have a mixed opinion of homework and its effects. Personally, I believe that homework must be assigned proportional to a student's ability. For example, take my AP Calculus teacher. She does give out a lot of homework, but if you have a B or above in her class, then you are exempt. I have never done my homework in that class because mathematics comes to me naturally (I often am in the 97~99 percentile of any standardized math test I take), and so I get straight 90+ in her class. This saves me a lot of time, as I can use the time that I would have spent on homework on something else, such as studying for my AP Psychology course. The opposite of this is my AP Computer Science course, where I get assigned a lot of busywork, but the problem is that the course is far too much busywork and not enough new knowledge being absorbed. Another good alternative for homework would be as my AP Statistics and AP Language teachers did last year, by making it extra credit.

Overall, homework should not be banned. But what should be done is that teachers must assign it reasonably; by that I mean easy busywork should not flood the higher achieving students that can ace a test just by being present in the classroom, while giving an adequate amount of homework varying by student skill level.
  #20    
Old November 25th, 2012, 03:10 AM
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Ugh, as a teacher, I'm going to take the opposite stance of gimmepie and say that even with great formative assessment, homework is necessary and has more benefits than given credit for. I honestly don't feel like some deep education theories/arguments, so let's keep it short. I'm surprised no one mentioned how one aspect of school is not just for pure knowledge but rather building of character that's beneficial to society. *ONE aspect* of that is really to have the grit and perseverance to keep working on a task that's challenging and acknowledge that we may have to distribute out of school time to handle a school task.

It works in the other way too: we also distribute school time to do out-of-school tasks. We do it all the time and no one has problems with it: we take school off to travel for example. So now suddenly the reverse is a huge issue and is considered waste of time or school is being 'inefficient' if school asks students to use some of their time to do school-related matters too?

If we can't finish a task that's given to us, we take responsibility and finish what we started. How annoying it is that new university hires do not remotely see any problem in not calling in work if sick, giving schedules/availabilities on time cause they "forgot", or taking some part of their job home to get it done by due time for... it's as if some of them never had to do it to begin with and never heard of such things already.

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  #21    
Old November 25th, 2012, 06:41 AM
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I grew up with no homework from about 7th to 12th and did much better without it. Note that I always did my homework. I never skipped it. Most parents don't know what their child is suppose to be doing because they never learned it. The teacher should teach them in school and not give homework. They will have to do homework in school and not at home. Books get heavier everyday and kids will eventully get back problems for having so much homework. And if kids had homework. Most will choose not to do it. If they didn't have homework,they would be forced to do it at school.
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  #22    
Old November 25th, 2012, 08:54 AM
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More homework is meaningless if the curriculum is inadequate. If anything, I'd beef up the curriculum and add more AP classes if possible before I give out homework over sub par material. That homework isn't going to make kids any smarter. If they even do it at all.
  #23    
Old November 25th, 2012, 09:45 AM
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I think the quality of the classes and teachers goes a long way. If the class isnt good, I dont think homework helps any better, if the material in class isnt understood, the child isnt going to understand homework any better. I really dont think homework does that much to improve grades. I dont think eliminating it entirely is the key but I dont think little kids need huge mountains of work at home, some is fine though, studying is essential to suceed in school. I also dont feel a longer school day would be any better than homework, kids will just lose focus more easily, leading to bad grades.
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Old November 25th, 2012, 11:17 AM
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Yet I think the question at hand is more like this: does homework have the potential to make a class/curriculum/the teaching better? If homework cannot ever do this under any circumstances, then it is always meaningless, and we should ban it because it is always destructive to education.

I certainly do not agree that homework is like this. Some posters here are saying well the work may be meaningless or the curriculum is bad to begin with. Those things are certainly valid concerns, but that's not the fault on the idea of homework itself, is it?
  #25    
Old November 25th, 2012, 11:46 AM
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You know, I read the article, and what concerns me most about this isn't the fact that he's removing homework (though I disagree with that decision nearly completely), it's that he's going the Bush route and reducing the number of students who repeat school years because they're inadequate. What on earth is that going to solve, other than pushing a student who hasn't yet grasped easier material and moving them onto harder material? They did that with my brother, because of that No Child Left Behind Act, and now I can safely say he knows very little information that should be common knowledge at this point for high school graduates. That isn't helping a student, that's crippling them in their futures.

Abolishing homework will only work properly if the time spent in school is spent actually doing something valuable with their time, and even then, homework serves a lot more purpose than work outside of the classroom. It reinforces the information taught that day and it teaches students to prioritize their important work and prepares them for the real work world. Cramming all the information in at once isn't going to help students know what they need to know. They need to be able to practice it outside of the classroom, on their own, in order for them to grasp it properly and for it to sink in. If someone truly believes that schoolwork should be kept in school, then I have to say that their logic is truly flawed. School prepares students for jobs where work outside of work is expected of employees. If they're stripped of that fundamental aspect of work, they're going to have a lot more difficulty adjusting to that when it comes down to it.
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