Here are a few unpalatable facts for parents and teachers who are mad about their kids’ homework.Stressing overly on homework is an exercise in waste, studies say.All your noisy scenes at home to help kids ‘learn things’ seem to do more harm than good.
Children who are forced to do things they hate never get smarter or more successful. In what way, researchers wonder, will it help kids improve their learning when homework taxes the young minds?
Drudgery is drudgery, no matter if it is in the name of achieving big.
Studies by sociologists at the University of Texas and Duke University, USA, indicate that homework kills children’s desire to learn.
However, homework has become an accepted norm around the world that makes students undergo extra hours of work at home. They have to ‘do a lot of things’ when back home after six hours of school. The kind of work they have to do include finishing assignments.
Teachers are now like weather forecasters who just pinpoint information. The art of teaching that involves humour, soul touching talks and intimacy has been replaced by ‘fact-detecting’.
As they are overtaxed by work, they seek the help of parents to fulfil the duties for them. They just want to get the damned stuff gone, and they don’t mind parents doing it for them.
Many parents take it upon themselves to perform this duty; some parents do it with great enthusiasm. The only difference parents could make is that they had better go to school instead of their kids.
No learning is happening.
As long as students come up smiling with high grades, nobody seems to have any issue with anything.
Helping kids with homework is the worst thing that parents canever do. As a result, self-motivation is missing. According to researcher Keith Robison and Angel Harris, both from USA, the kids who started off as high achievers ended up doing worse comparing to high achievers who weren’t helped with homework at home.
Schools with strict regime on home works produce many ‘learning-weary’ students. When asked at a US school whether homework ever made them think about dropping out of school, most of the outgoing students said, “YES”.The truth is that most students go to school every morning with fear if they fail to finish a work the night before.
Even elementary school kids wail over a work they are not able to do and if parents are not good enough to do the work, they really get disappointed.
At school, they are always compared with other well-performing students. As homework, like grade, has become scale to measure the diligence of a student and the pressure is high on every student to be hardworking ones.
Some students by the virtue of being intelligent may grab high grades but their success is always credited to the whole lot of homework they have done. Everybody praises their diligence.
Homework, as a way to send home more ideas, is important. But giving undue importance to it without giving them time to think, imagine and engage in leisurely activities might take the wind out them.
One study says, “If a child cannot learn what needs to be learned in a six-hour day, we are expecting too much of the child."
This argument is not for abolishing homework altogether, but making it more comfortable to them. The stress must be on making sure students are well informed to perform things on their own. Because seeking help for homework is not ideal.
And the most important point both schools and parents miss is the reading habit. Children should read a lot of stuff on their own, just to develop their sensibility.
Also remember that countries with best academic records including Denmark and Finland have no homework.
What does that mean?