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Is homework too stressful?

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'yorz
1136362.  Sat Jun 06, 2015 4:48 am Reply with quote

This article suggests that scrapping homework might alleviate the stress for pupils.

Quote:
One of Britain's leading independent schools is set to scrap homework for its pupils in response to an "epidemic" of mental health problems.
Cheltenham Ladies' College said it is considering getting rid of the “Victorian” practice of prep and replacing it with weekly meditation classes and longer walks between lessons.

Quote:
...if our obligation as educators is to try to the best of our ability to set young people up as best we can for whatever the future may hold, then to ignore this whole area or to trivialise it is really irresponsible."
my bold

How the hell will removing those pressures prepare those kids for Real Life?

However,

Quote:
But heads at other leading independent schools say homework is essential in helping children to learn to deal with pressure.


Thank heaven for common sense.

 
CharliesDragon
1136367.  Sat Jun 06, 2015 5:10 am Reply with quote

Well, the American model seems to be more than stressful enough, going from the American teenagers I know.

I never dealt well with homework, since it wasn't done at the "proper" place of schoolwork, school. Then again, I never dealt well with a lot of seemingly minor stuff, so I'm not a good person to model things on.

It seems a lot of what was special interest or that you at least didn't need to know unless you took a university course in the field fifty years ago is today considered essential to learn, which bulks up a lot of courses.

It also has a bit to do with study habits and enviorment, and attitude, but without good habits and enviorment the student is more likely to aquire a negative attitude to homework and you get a bad loop of "I'm stressed about not having done my homework yet, but I'm really not in the mood to do it."

Finland's school system is often celebrated as being very good, and I think they put off giving homework until the kids are 10-12 years old. I don't know if that's the best, I know we freaked out when we started getting proper grades when we were 12-13 years old, it became a big thing because it was new. To keep the homework as light as possible for as long as possible I see as a good thing, though.

I don't know that doing homework has had much of an impact on how I'd feel about finishing paper work or something at home. I'd probably see it as something that needed to be done and do it, and enjoy it as much or little regardless.

 
'yorz
1136368.  Sat Jun 06, 2015 5:20 am Reply with quote

Of course I didn't like homework, but I remember feeling good when I had set myself to do it properly. Sometimes I could rely on what I had learned in school during the day, and sometimes I had to find the answer myself. But that system was from half a century ago. Things have changed, of course. No idea how I would fare nowadays.

<ed> But I do think youngsters should learn about pressure. The real world doesn't allow you a walk in the park every time things get heated.

 
Zziggy
1136371.  Sat Jun 06, 2015 5:31 am Reply with quote

'yorz wrote:
Quote:
...if our obligation as educators is to try to the best of our ability to set young people up as best we can for whatever the future may hold, then to ignore this whole area or to trivialise it is really irresponsible."
my bold

How the hell will removing those pressures prepare those kids for Real Life?

Thee way I see it though ... these are kids, not just smaller adults. They need to be able to relax and socialise and play. And yes, prepare for adult life, but do we really want that preparation to be "life is an endless drudge of work, you'll never have fun, get used to it"?

Edit - and though I don't know, having had no training in psychology or whatnot, I really wouldn't be surprised if stressed kids become adults who actually are worse than normal at handling stress. I mean, we don't expect victims of child neglect to be the most independent adults, or chronically ill kids to become the most hardy adults.

 
Jenny
1136403.  Sat Jun 06, 2015 11:54 am Reply with quote

I don't remember having any homework at all until I was 10, and then in the last year of primary school we got practice papers for the 11+ to do once a week. First year of secondary school we got maybe an hour a night. Kids now seem to get more than we did.

 
'yorz
1136404.  Sat Jun 06, 2015 12:11 pm Reply with quote

Primary school can't have given much home work, at least not that I recall. Secondary school, however, gave us plenty do do at home. At least on 4 subjects a day. It meant about 2 hours stuck in my room when I got home from school; every now and then some more after evening meal. Half would be doing exercises, writing stuff in note books, and half just cramming info into my head.

 
crissdee
1136405.  Sat Jun 06, 2015 12:16 pm Reply with quote

I had no homework at all until I started grammar school. We would get perhaps an hour's worth in total in multiple subjects each night. I did as little of it as I could get away with (something which was quite easy) From what I hear kids get a lot more these days and it's checked on more rigorously than mine. This is probably a good thing, but I am a little concerned when I see junior school kids apparently taking work home. Let them be kids for a little while before introducing the reality of grown up life.

 
sally carr
1136433.  Sat Jun 06, 2015 3:53 pm Reply with quote

The school at which I volunteer has a very strict uniform policy, right down to the colour of socks and hair bands. That applies to all pupils right from Reception class. Homework is done by all pupils after they get to year 2.

 
crissdee
1136437.  Sat Jun 06, 2015 4:22 pm Reply with quote

Remind those of us who don't have children about, what age is Year 2?

 
NinOfEden
1136438.  Sat Jun 06, 2015 4:24 pm Reply with quote

Zziggy wrote:
Thee way I see it though ... these are kids, not just smaller adults. They need to be able to relax and socialise and play. And yes, prepare for adult life, but do we really want that preparation to be "life is an endless drudge of work, you'll never have fun, get used to it"?

Edit - and though I don't know, having had no training in psychology or whatnot, I really wouldn't be surprised if stressed kids become adults who actually are worse than normal at handling stress. I mean, we don't expect victims of child neglect to be the most independent adults, or chronically ill kids to become the most hardy adults.

I completely agree - and it's not as if homework is the only thing children/teenagers are pressured into doing. From the day you pop out of the womb there's pressure to do things you don't necessarily want to, plus kids spent 7 hours a day at school anyway; once the last bell rings it's supposed to be free time. It's not as if most employers require their workers to carry on working once they've gone home.

 
Alfred E Neuman
1136445.  Sat Jun 06, 2015 5:11 pm Reply with quote

I refused to participate in homework, and if I couldn't finish it during the lesson it was set in, or another free period, it didn't get done. I spent some time in detention, but that was better than having to spend my evenings doing homework. It was actually surprisingly easy to keep up, and it's amazing how little time I needed to churn out some feeble attempt that the teacher deemed acceptable. I suspect the fact that I could pass their exams with ease made some of them cut me a little slack.

 
sally carr
1136456.  Sat Jun 06, 2015 8:52 pm Reply with quote

Sorry crissdee, year 2 are 5 to 6 years old.

 
crissdee
1136464.  Sun Jun 07, 2015 3:33 am Reply with quote

Thanks for that sal, that's waaaaay too early for homework imho.


NinOfEden wrote:
It's not as if most employers require their workers to carry on working once they've gone home.


I bloody wish!!!!!!!

We are expected to do all sorts of cr*p in our own time, and I know my brother has a lot of stuff to do when he gets home.

 
barbados
1136477.  Sun Jun 07, 2015 5:13 am Reply with quote

We're piloting homework collaberation next year, for year 6.
It will incorporate responsible social media usage, something that is actually quite exciting.

It means most of my day is taken up with testing and trying to break the safeguards that are being put in place.

 
Spud McLaren
1136484.  Sun Jun 07, 2015 5:54 am Reply with quote

I've no objection to children (from a suitable age) being given work to do such as research for their next lesson, or work to consolidate what's been learned in the last. But there are times when my 15-year-old daughter spends 4 hours on one piece of homework, and that's not due to lack of ability, nor to concurrent Twitter use. 4 hours is ridiculously too much. And she's an only child; how do those kids fare who don't have a home environment conducive to concentrating?

She starts lessons at 08.30 and finishes at 14.50. I would prefer to see a finish time of 16.00, with the other 1hr 10 min given over to a properly-supervised prep session, where all resources are available and the atmosphere is more conducive to working. Having said that, it does presuppose that the school is capable of providing such an atmosphere - the one she attends now could, but it would have been beyond the school she left in Sept 2014.

 

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