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Ceres
September 26th, 2006, 07:06 PM
From Maclean's mgazine - I really agreed with what this guy has to say about "busywork" ::weirdsmil

http://www.macleans.ca/topstories/education/article.jsp?content=20060911_133063_133063

Cat
September 26th, 2006, 07:19 PM
I don't like reading about conclusions that are based on research and statistics if I can't see the studies for myself. Unfortunately no references are cited in the linked article.

Chesna
September 27th, 2006, 10:40 AM
I don't like reading about conclusions that are based on research and statistics if I can't see the studies for myself. Unfortunately no references are cited in the linked article.

I agree and add not knowing the magazine it was in..which can also give a different type of slant as well. After taking aoo many different stats class..it is very easy to manipulate them to match whatever you need...thats why don't put much clout in stats unless I see them myself.

Chesna

WiccanGoddess
September 27th, 2006, 12:51 PM
Homework, in my case, only made things worse. If I listened in class and took notes, that's what effected my grade, not the homework.

Selenite
September 27th, 2006, 12:59 PM
Repetition of something you're trying to learn can help you learn more efficiently, with my terrible memory it's about the only thing that gets me through the day sometimes. :P

But, homework (from what I've experienced) tends to be more about busywork than about learning. A good teacher/professor can make homework worthwhile...the kids will never enjoy it but at least it's doing something for them in the long run.

WiccanGoddess
September 27th, 2006, 01:03 PM
But, homework (from what I've experienced) tends to be more about busywork than about learning. A good teacher/professor can make homework worthwhile...the kids will never enjoy it but at least it's doing something for them in the long run.

*nods in agreement*

I'll be honest: I've never had homework that took me more than 5 minutes to do. At least, from elementary to highschool, college is much different. College is about memorization and reading, whereas, the homework I had in public school was color, yes, coloring, even in high school. Even then, the math work I had...five minutes, tops.

JyuMuse
September 27th, 2006, 01:08 PM
There's a book about this that just came out, I heard the author on NPR a few weeks ago. It was really interesting and makes sense. What's the point in giving a kid that already understands the material homework? And for the kids who don't understand it homework might only frustrate them if there is no one to help them on it. He made a point that homework should be done in class as much as possible so the kids can get the help they need on it and those who know the material can prove it easily.

His daughter dropped out of school at age 16 or 17 I believe at his encouragement - she was getting crazy stressed because her french class alone assigned 2-3hrs of homework every night and she just couldn't keep up and still have the fun that a kid should have. So she dropped out, took her G.E.D., and now is it college a year early. Now that's what I would have liked to have done!

WiccanGoddess
September 27th, 2006, 01:13 PM
He made a point that homework should be done in class as much as possible so the kids can get the help they need on it and those who know the material can prove it easily.
Wouldn't it then be called classwork? Homework is to be done at home, classwork in the classroom.

At that, aren't teachers to provide help with the homework? Go over it, ask questions, answer questions? In my case, the little homework I did have, if my parents couldn't help me, my teachers provided at home numbers, and we'd meet up, the mom and I at the local McDonald's with the teacher for further explanation.

Selenite
September 27th, 2006, 01:24 PM
*nods in agreement*

I'll be honest: I've never had homework that took me more than 5 minutes to do. At least, from elementary to highschool, college is much different. College is about memorization and reading, whereas, the homework I had in public school was color, yes, coloring, even in high school. Even then, the math work I had...five minutes, tops.

If I could've done my math in 5 minutes... ooh boy I'd be on a full-ride scholarship somewhere. I was taking Calculus I and II for college credit through the high school and you *needed* the repetition to make it through that class.

But coloring? In high school? Yeah, busy work to the extreme. That's just messed up...

WiccanGoddess
September 27th, 2006, 01:29 PM
If I could've done my math in 5 minutes... ooh boy I'd be on a full-ride scholarship somewhere. I was taking Calculus I and II for college credit through the high school and you *needed* the repetition to make it through that class.

Our high school didn't offer any college credit classes. They offered three AP classes, but that involved taking a test, and the past four years, only one person has gotten the credit from the test. The teachers are accredited, but they have no clue what they are doing. We cut and paste in AP English IV, for goodness sakes.

The math I did take didn't require much work, as it wasn't anything challenging.



But coloring? In high school? Yeah, busy work to the extreme. That's just messed up...

As I say above, cut and paste in an Advanced Placement class.

ladyalpha
September 27th, 2006, 01:34 PM
At that, aren't teachers to provide help with the homework? Go over it, ask questions, answer questions? In my case, the little homework I did have, if my parents couldn't help me, my teachers provided at home numbers, and we'd meet up, the mom and I at the local McDonald's with the teacher for further explanation.

I wish I had had teachers like that. They would have gotten their money worth especially my math teachers. lol
I personally believe that some homework is good. I have given my middle child homework even when she didn't have any from school. If she has missed some questions I will have her redo them and maybe a few others, just so she learns why she missed them and gets to the point of understanding the work.
However, I do think that sometimes kids get too much homework. My oldest barely got any homework last year and then this year she gets hours worth of homework every night. It is stressful for her and the family, because she has to do her homework, eat and get bathed and off to bed, on top of getting the work done.
I think that a gradual buildup is a better way of doing things. If they don't get much work the year before I don't think they should suddenly be getting four subjects worth of work each night the next year. She brought home that much work the first day of school this year.
I think it is overwhelming for the child and then they are not able to truly learn anything. Not to mention the pain it can cause their backs carrying all those books. She and one of her friends that I know if, have already pulled muscles in their backs. They are only 9 years old.
But I think the increase of homework goes hand and hand with the no child left behind law. They must know so much for all the tests that they are given now. And I don't think that all the schools and teachers have found a balance yet that works for the students and the requirements that they have to reach.

Faery-Wings
September 27th, 2006, 01:47 PM
Ooooh, I shouldn't reply to this......
:mad:
I had read an article in my local paper last week about this. It was about the research that actually showed that homeowrk in elem grades did not improve scores, and more than 1.5 hours in middle school and more than 2 in HS was detrimental.

My kids' school is just one more on the boat of having to teach and do too much. They are required to cram so much into one day and stil the kids have 1-2 hours a night of HW. (3rd and 5th grades). These kids ( as an entire generation) are not given time to be friggin *kids.* yes, this makes me mad.
Elem kids are soooo stressed out. And from what I am hearing, so are the teachers. And then, add in stressed parents who are now *teaching* their kids what really should be done in school.
These are the l;ast few weeks of decent weather we'll have to spend outside after school, and my kids are spending 2 hours a night sitting at the table with 4-5 different homework projects.

Just add this to one more kick against No Child Left Behind.

I'll shut up now, because this topic makes me really angry.

Ceres
September 27th, 2006, 01:51 PM
I agree and add not knowing the magazine it was in..which can also give a different type of slant as well. After taking aoo many different stats class..it is very easy to manipulate them to match whatever you need...thats why don't put much clout in stats unless I see them myself.

Chesna


Maclean's Magazine is a pretty reputable conservative magazine here in Canada. It's one of Conrad Black's collection.

Ceres
September 27th, 2006, 01:52 PM
Ooooh, I shouldn't reply to this......
:mad:
I had read an article in my local paper last week about this. It was about the research that actually showed that homeowrk in elem grades did not improve scores, and more than 1.5 hours in middle school and more than 2 in HS was detrimental.

My kids' school is just one more on the boat of having to teach and do too much. They are required to cram so much into one day and stil the kids have 1-2 hours a night of HW. (3rd and 5th grades). These kids ( as an entire generation) are not given time to be friggin *kids.* yes, this makes me mad.
Elem kids are soooo stressed out. And from what I am hearing, so are the teachers. And then, add in stressed parents who are now *teaching* their kids what really should be done in school.
These are the l;ast few weeks of decent weather we'll have to spend outside after school, and my kids are spending 2 hours a night sitting at the table with 4-5 different homework projects.

Just add this to one more kick against No Child Left Behind.

I'll shut up now, because this topic makes me really angry.

This is what I am hearing parents everywhere say.

Selenite
September 27th, 2006, 02:23 PM
Ooooh, I shouldn't reply to this......
:mad:
I had read an article in my local paper last week about this. It was about the research that actually showed that homeowrk in elem grades did not improve scores, and more than 1.5 hours in middle school and more than 2 in HS was detrimental.

My kids' school is just one more on the boat of having to teach and do too much. They are required to cram so much into one day and stil the kids have 1-2 hours a night of HW. (3rd and 5th grades). These kids ( as an entire generation) are not given time to be friggin *kids.* yes, this makes me mad.
Elem kids are soooo stressed out. And from what I am hearing, so are the teachers. And then, add in stressed parents who are now *teaching* their kids what really should be done in school.
These are the l;ast few weeks of decent weather we'll have to spend outside after school, and my kids are spending 2 hours a night sitting at the table with 4-5 different homework projects.

Just add this to one more kick against No Child Left Behind.

I'll shut up now, because this topic makes me really angry.

I agree--kids that young don't need to be given that much homework. Middle and high school is one thing, but an elementary school kid doesn't need the extra stress of a few hours of homework a night. Not to mention how early kids are learning things these days--my little brother was learning algebra in 4th grade! I never even had to think about letters AND numbers in my math until 7th grade, and I turned out just fine.

Brightshores
September 27th, 2006, 02:48 PM
Ever since I was given 117 long division problems in one night by my third grade teacher (who I still think was one of the meanest people ever to have lived), I've been against mass amounts of homework.

Now, as a teacher, all I can say is that I don't expect hours of homework each night from my students. I expect them to do projects, papers, and writing assignments, which are always longer-term assignments and are never given more than once every two weeks or so. I expect them to read their textbook as assigned (in moderation!) and do whatever study techniques they need to to learn and remember the information (if they need to outline the chapter, they should, but I'm not assigning that to the whole class).

I haven't taught AP yet, but if I do, I would imagine I'd assign a bit more work, much like a college class. I certainly wouldn't make them cut and paste things, though.

lynn271
September 27th, 2006, 02:52 PM
His daughter dropped out of school at age 16 or 17 I believe at his encouragement - she was getting crazy stressed because her french class alone assigned 2-3hrs of homework every night and she just couldn't keep up and still have the fun that a kid should have. So she dropped out, took her G.E.D., and now is it college a year early. Now that's what I would have liked to have done!

That happened with my stepkid. Her dad and I gave her the option of leaving school and getting a GED at 16, because she was so sick of it and stressed to the point of getting physically sick, but she'd already been so brainwashed to believe that leaving high school = loser for life, so she stayed. She regrets it, though; she'd have graduated from college by now instead of having another year to go.

So, we gave her permission to blow off homework. It was very difficult for her because when she lived with her mother, she was always told to do every bit of homework and that grades were of the utmost importance. Her dad and I didn't give a hoot in a high wind about grades, as long as she learned the material to the best of her ability and didn't actually fail and have to repeat. It was quite a shock for her.

Anyway, we taught her how to prioritize and do the homework that was important (some of it was) and blow off the BS busywork. It saved her sanity.

Chesna
September 27th, 2006, 04:16 PM
Maclean's Magazine is a pretty reputable conservative magazine here in Canada. It's one of Conrad Black's collection.

Being from the US..this means not much to me. Still wish for a link to the research article..or a citation of the article..in my mind all good papers cite there research.

Chesna

JyuMuse
September 27th, 2006, 04:26 PM
Wouldn't it then be called classwork? Homework is to be done at home, classwork in the classroom.

Well I think that was the point he was trying to make...



At that, aren't teachers to provide help with the homework? Go over it, ask questions, answer questions? In my case, the little homework I did have, if my parents couldn't help me, my teachers provided at home numbers, and we'd meet up, the mom and I at the local McDonald's with the teacher for further explanation.

You can't assume all kids are going to A.) Have parents that can or even care enough to help them (or even have the time too as some parents work 3rd shift and don't see there kids very much and B.) that they go to a school that has good teachers like that. Meeting a teacher outside of school would have been inappropiate at my school.

Ceres
September 27th, 2006, 04:38 PM
I don't like reading about conclusions that are based on research and statistics if I can't see the studies for myself. Unfortunately no references are cited in the linked article.

His point though, is that there are no references that prove that more homework makes kids smarter.... in other words, he searched for the same thing you are asking for and found none that proves it works the way people have accepted that it does.

Ceres
September 27th, 2006, 04:39 PM
Being from the US..this means not much to me. Still wish for a link to the research article..or a citation of the article..in my mind all good papers cite there research.

Chesna

Then why arent you asking for research that proves more homework makes kids smarter? :hahugh:

treefae
September 27th, 2006, 04:45 PM
i read an article in newsweek about how parents are keeping their kids back until they are six for kindergarten so their kids can get a jump on the competition,they are calling it redshirting.public school is scaring me!can someone thoroughly break down the alternatives(private schools,homeschooling) for me?as in a non stressful program.thanks

lynn271
September 27th, 2006, 04:51 PM
There's another trend I don't like, aside from the one of giving kids homework just so they'll have homework to do.

That's giving kids homework regularly that they can't do on their own. I never objected to helping my child learn the material if she needed help, providing materials for projects, and so on, but I sure resented her being given assignments that required significant amounts of my time and effort.

In fact, the very last straw (there were lots more) that caused me to pull my kid out of school was when she came home in tears because she had a big report to do that had to be typed...and the kids hadn't learned typing yet. The parents were expected to do the typing, of course, but she thought she had to do it and she knew it would take her forever, hence the tears.

That was her last day at school.

What of the kids whose parents can't or won't spend that time and effort, for whatever reason?

They hardly ever did that when I was in school, and when they did the assignments were usually optional. This is as it should be.

We homeschool now. Honestly, I spend very little more time now doing "schoolwork" with my daughter than I did when she was in school. Ridiculous.

Ceres
September 27th, 2006, 04:52 PM
i read an article in newsweek about how parents are keeping their kids back until they are six for kindergarten so their kids can get a jump on the competition,they are calling it redshirting.public school is scaring me!can someone thoroughly break down the alternatives(private schools,homeschooling) for me?as in a non stressful program.thanks

There is a section on homeschooling in this forum now - you might be interested to go through some of the threads to learn more about how it works.

Lunar Raven
September 27th, 2006, 05:15 PM
Then why arent you asking for research that proves more homework makes kids smarter? :hahugh:

Well..

As far as homework and this thread goes, I agree and disagree..all at the same time.

If the homework actually teaches something the kids didn't know..then of course it can make them smarter..that's just common sense. It's like reading a book...you can gain knowledge from a book at home...there's nothing stopping that.

While most homework that's given out is just 'practice' stuff, I don't doubt that it helps kids better their skills, if they actually do it...but...

I've never liked homework when I was in school. I never saw the point...especially when you spend 8 hours at school everyday of the week...more time in school than anything else...only to come home and do yet more school work. I think there should be some sort of separation.

I had a teacher once that was against homework, and I actually did great in his class.

So in general..I do think that homework can make you smarter, if you do it..but I don't really think it's necessary. Loading kids with schoolwork when they spend most of their time at school anyway is just ridiculous.

Cat
September 27th, 2006, 05:16 PM
I should have said--yes, I do think that a lot of the homework assigned is busywork. It can be stupid, time consuming stuff that seems to bear no relevance to the topic of the class. I do think too much is given. I had a lot of homework that was right on target, but I also had some that was simply an exercise in failure because I didn't understand the math any better at home than I had in class.

I do think that some it's a very good thing to learn how to research and write papers. However, having to build your own pyramid seems rather less educational--unless you are in an arcitecture class.

I just have a background that makes me always ask the question: how do you know? And in the case of the article by that author, the only answer I see is: I don't.

Sorry if this isn'ty making much sense I have 2 3year olds here vying for my attention.

Xentor
September 27th, 2006, 05:25 PM
Homework should provide a student with practicing material. Repetition is the key: do the same action over and over again, untill you've mastered it.

Homework shouldn't send the student out on a quest untill the student already did acquire the basics.

lynn271
September 27th, 2006, 05:50 PM
Homework should provide a student with practicing material. Repetition is the key: do the same action over and over again, untill you've mastered it.


This begs the question of what to do with the kids who've already mastered the material. Should the kid who can do long division in her sleep be made to do dozens or hundreds more "practice" problems at home?

TseMoana
September 27th, 2006, 06:00 PM
When I was in elementary school, we didn't get homework. Only in the final three grades we'd have homework once a week to study topography for the test we'd have on that every wednesday. And that was only like 20 things each time.

Real homework didn't start until highschool (which, in the Netherlands starts at 12). At first I was this really supergood kid doing my homework the moment I got home and all that and got really high grades. But after two years I realised if I turned it down a few notches I'd still get good passing grades but more free time.

While it was fun, it seriously messed up my discipline. It still troubles me now I'm at uni, I procrastinate, do everything last minute and still manage to get passing grades... What did I do to deserve that... (Not that I'm not accepting of it and glad I pass my things)

Anyway, back on topic, I think homework can be really good to reinforce what has been learned in class. Repetition, as has been said. It should not, ever, be a thing to just keep a kid busy with somewhat school related material if they do not learn anything from it.

And to assign new homework (as opposed to repetition) on occassion, can be good as well as long as it is coupled with proper tutoring, both in class before the homework is given and in class after the homework has been handed in and reviewed by the teacher. Ideally, a teacher should also be available in between, but with all the things a teacher needs to do outside of school time (preparing classes, grading things etc...) that might not always work.

exodustruth
September 27th, 2006, 06:14 PM
If you don't use it you lose it..some of you might have been able to do algebra at one time and now struggle even in the basics..This is where homework comes in. IMO homeworks helps to better the impression that the material leaves behind in both the conscious and sub-conscious mind...and practice does make perfect..but too much practice can be a bad thing too. Nothing wrong with a moderate amount of homework. It's when it goes to the extreme that it is a bad thing.

Zibblsnrt
September 27th, 2006, 06:31 PM
I'm gonna jump on the agreement bandwagon with this particular article. Homework these days has become as much something for its own sake, or to "prove" that the students are doing stuff in class, or - more and more - as a way of making sure the students' schedule is as filled as possible outside of class. The purpose of a lot of it really is no longer educational, but is rather glommed into some kinda pseudo-parenting.

There're parents out there demanding their kids receive as much homework as is physically possible to do, just because it gives them an excuse to keep them cloistered in the room "learning," and away from the evil terrors of the world outside the house. This is a real problem; I ran smack into it going through elementary school when there was a bigger-than-usual kidnapping scare going around the province. Because of it, largely at parents' insistence, some teachers would ensure that students at, say, the fifth grade level, had four to six hours of homework. Every single night. About eighty percent of that load was math drills.

Did I actually get anything out of that aside from frustration and a strong dislike of math which I'm still trying to shake? Absolutely not.

I noticed that that tendency started to abate dramatically in high school, by which point the homework load I got landed right in the middle of, IMO, what is perfectly reasonable. I'm not sure if that's because the program was different at that level, or because people backed off from the "more is always better" mindset. I hear the same horror stories from the elementary level, so I'm doubtful on the latter.

Some is necessary, of course - you can't fit enough instruction in a thirty-hour school week these days, especially with the sorry state of the curriculum. There's going to be things that aren't worth tying up class time (drills, some reading, etc.), and things which can't be done in class (a lot of research, some larger creative projects, interviews, etc). Those are perfectly fine.

The problem now is that homework's considered good purely for its own sake, which means more of it must be better. That's inappropriate. What's also inappropriate is assigning the material after the students have demonstrably mastered it in class.

Ceres
September 27th, 2006, 06:46 PM
If you don't use it you lose it..some of you might have been able to do algebra at one time and now struggle even in the basics..This is where homework comes in. IMO homeworks helps to better the impression that the material leaves behind in both the conscious and sub-conscious mind...and practice does make perfect..but too much practice can be a bad thing too. Nothing wrong with a moderate amount of homework. It's when it goes to the extreme that it is a bad thing.

If thats true, why bother teaching kids to do algebra since they arent using it for anything while they are still kids and if the homework worked so great for teaching us how to do it, then why dont we still remember it when we need it now as adults?

As pointed out in the article (you did read the article, yes?) the idea that repetition is the way kids learn is outmoded education theory linked to behavioral modification.

Layla
September 27th, 2006, 06:52 PM
HOMEWORK IS THE BANE OF MY ADHD EXISTENCE!! IT KILLED ME IN SCHOOL AND ITS KILLING ME RAISING MY KIDS!

Rant over, back to your regularly scheduled thread....:lol:

Thunder
September 27th, 2006, 06:56 PM
Then why arent you asking for research that proves more homework makes kids smarter? :hahugh:

Schooling (In school or at home) doesn't make you smart... it makes you educated, if it is done right.
Homework is practice. Some kids need more practice at some things than others. Homework must be very carefully explained, especially in the earlier grades because you will learn what you practice.... even if it is wrong. Some homework is designed to give young minds an opportunity to use a concept they have just been exposed to.

If homework is being given just to fill time or because you have failed to use class time effectively it is pointless.

imho

Sun Sprite
September 27th, 2006, 07:14 PM
I've seen useful, and useless homework.

It's useless for every class a high school student has to assign two hours a piece of homework due the next day, regardless of how usefull it might have been in the long run.

It is useless to have more than two hours of homework at any age. Think about it, if the kid is up with one hour to get ready for the bus, the hour bus ride, then the 7 1/2 hours in school, and don't forget the hour at night for dinner and baths, how many hours are left for sleep? Kids need eight to nine hours. Do they even have an hour to play and be a kid?

Admittedly, once in a while, they will have a heavier homework load than others, but most kids are on thier own when they get home. In between dinner, if they have it, and thier parents demands on thier time (you would be surprised how many parents take there kids shopping, or goofing off during the misddle of the week), they have to sleep and sneak in a few minutes of homework.

Brightshores
September 27th, 2006, 07:22 PM
Not to mention that a lot of kids, especially in high school, have school-sponsored activities after school. Kids who play high school sports often don't even get home until after 6 PM, and when I was in theater productions in high school, for the two weeks before the show opened, I didn't get home until 9 or 10 PM. Where does 4-5 hours of homework fit into all this?

There has to be balance between school and real life. Otherwise the kids will just end up as stressed out workaholics, and will spend their adult lives in therapy. :awilly:

dragoncrone
September 27th, 2006, 07:32 PM
I'm taking a few steps back and commenting on the parents who enroll their child at 6 instead of 5: If they are in a district where they have that choice, I will lay you odds that the ones who opt for it have boys. Little boys are real squirrels until they settle down, usually a year behind the girls, and starting them early doesn't always accomplish anything. I doubt it has much to do with 'wanting their kid to outshine' the others.

Arion
September 27th, 2006, 08:03 PM
The only thing homework does is stress me out because I hardly ever do it. You'd think it would encourage me to do it once in a while, but it doesn't :p It's useless.

ladyalpha
September 27th, 2006, 08:19 PM
In regards to kids going to school when they are six instead of five..I am one of those parents. It had nothing to do with my kids being better than someone else's kids. My oldest couldn't go to school when she turned 5 due to when her birthday falls (it was past the cut off date). My second child was homeschooled during kindergarten so she didn't do that grade when she started public school rather just going straight into first grade.
Now with my son, who is 3 right now, we will be keeping him out even though he will be 5 in time to go if we are in a different state that starts school later in the year than down here in MO. We (my husband and I) feel that he will hopefully be better prepared when he is 6.
I believe that most kids, just from my experience and from what I have personally seen from others who have opted to wait that extra year for whatever reason, actually do better. They are more mature and are able to sit down for a little longer period of time than those that are younger. Now obviously that doesn't mean every kid in the world falls in that, as some kids are just naturally able to sit and handle the structure.
But, I just wanted to let it be known that not all parents that opt to wait an extra year are doing it for any other reason than for the best interest of their child, or due to cut off times in the district.
ladyalpha

Zibblsnrt
September 27th, 2006, 08:56 PM
It is useless to have more than two hours of homework at any age. Think about it, if the kid is up with one hour to get ready for the bus, the hour bus ride, then the 7 1/2 hours in school, and don't forget the hour at night for dinner and baths, how many hours are left for sleep? Kids need eight to nine hours. Do they even have an hour to play and be a kid?

There's a point on this. I don't think it was made in that specific article; Maclean's was talking about things along this time for a couple issues before and after the specific one on homework. One of the things they're arguing is that this ridiculous homework load is intended to prevent people from "having even an hour to play and be a kid."

A lot of people these days wet themselves in terror at the idea of their kids having a tithe of the freedom and independence they had in their own youths; risks which were mundane fifteen years ago and hardly changed since have been hyped into guaranteed death lurking around every corner. Put another way, people don't seem to be able to understand risk anymore. Devoting the majority of a kid's waking hours (and, when possible, weekends) to homework, school or extracurricular activities means they don't get the opportunity to do their own thing.

Many parents prefer it this way. If Little Timmy's every waking minute is planned out by his parents or the school until he's fifteen or so, why, that just means he's safe!

lynn271
September 27th, 2006, 09:48 PM
I'm taking a few steps back and commenting on the parents who enroll their child at 6 instead of 5: If they are in a district where they have that choice, I will lay you odds that the ones who opt for it have boys. Little boys are real squirrels until they settle down, usually a year behind the girls, and starting them early doesn't always accomplish anything. I doubt it has much to do with 'wanting their kid to outshine' the others.

Yes.

And some kids, mine for example, just can't handle a full day of school at age five. Mine went to half-day kindergarten, and needed a nap in the afternoon several days a week. If my district had had full-day kindergarten, I'd have had to withdraw her and keep her home for another year.

Rowanbirch
September 28th, 2006, 08:38 AM
You know what I find parents get most defensive about and entrenched in their beliefs-Potty training, eating and homework/education issues. This discussion just shows me that what I believe is true-the anti-homework camp and the pro-some homework camp-are just like talking to pro-choice and anti-woman, oops did I say that-"anti-choice" I mean- groups-each thinks they are right, won't look at any data or discredits any data that shows that they might just be possibly wrong-("but you can manipulatie data and spin it anyway you want too!")

Homework as practiced by elitist schools actually is more determential to society as a whole. The kids suffer, because when they are stuck inside at a desk for two-four hours a night working at something they don't get, don't want to get, and are miserable, they are missing out on building physical muscles as well as their emotional intelligence by practicing "pickup games" with the neighborhood kids, or "hanging out", as well as not being with their family-building family emotional intelligence-how do you resolve conflict if you are chained to your desk?

Now, I know people will say-"yeah, but I have to bring home work from my work, so this is just good training for the real world." I would say-well you are either a poor manager of your time at work, or you are working at job that doesn't respect family/life/work boundaries., the difference is you are an adult who can make choices, (yes you really can, don't blame me if you are too fearful to lose your "steady paycheck" for doing something you are passionate about) and your kids can't make those choices.

Now, there is a homework that I believe in, but its an anathama to the way the U.S. learned helplessness degineration of truly brilliant people educational/societial system actually works. Its when a child is excited about learning, can't wait to learn more, and really wants to spend time doing said "homework". For example, I loved stories of women heros when I was a child. My teacher in 4th grade said, "Robin, have you ever heard of Harriet Tubman?" And I was like Harriet Who?-She handed me a book, and I read about Harriet Tubman, and I was fascinated by this not so glorious part of US history. I then said-hmm, got anymore books on slavery why was it so bad? I went to the public library that Saturday and checked out some books on slavery. That led me when I played with my friends to organize a Posse of slaves who I led through the woods of Minnesota to freedom. Well, one of little trivias I picked up was that Harriet during the night often felt trees for the moss to guide people North, as "moss grows on the north side of the trees", so that led me to go hmm, I wonder why that is-which led me back to the library to read about trees, and sun and photosynthesis, which led me to read about astromomy-which led me to do a diaroma of the solar system, which...led me to read a biography of Galielo...which led me to read about church medieval history-which led me to the Crusuades, which led me to read about Muslim history, which then I started to read about alegebra-AND then, and only then I started to like math. I must have spent about two hours a night doing "homework", but it wasn't work and it wasn't hard. it was enjoyable, and thrilling, and as Doctor Who said-"...there is just more to learn".

I fear for the U.S. You know why-Our Thomas Edisons, Our
Thomas Jeffersons all the "freethinkers" won't be able to think like this anymore because it will have been beaten out of them by our educational system of "sit at your desk, look at what I wrote on the board, take this test do this homework". We are making great factory workers and cubicle drones-ala The Office-not great minds who will change the world. Look at the people who majorly impacted our society in the last twenty years-Bill Gates, Steve Jobs,-love them or hate them, they changed the world-and they hated school and dropped out of high school/college. If we continue with this take this test and listen to the teacher drone on-well what bright minds will have been lost? What will we have lost as a society?

In any case, if you believe in homework an article or a book won't change your mind, if you are a freethinking unschooler then this book just confirms what you want to believe. Neither camp is wrong I guess, because we all have to get through life somehow, and hey, someone has to make the coffee and approve the home loans I guess.

Chesna
September 28th, 2006, 09:15 AM
Then why arent you asking for research that proves more homework makes kids smarter? :hahugh:

I wasn't asking for that. What I was trying to get across..is IMHO...if a paper or article is going to site research...that at the end of there article they should list the research they were basing their paper on. I have a hard time taking any paper or artice on face value where research is cited if I am unable to see where theyare getting it from. That includes my local paper, magazines and anything else. Before I make a conclusion on what this person is trying to say, I'd like to look at the research they lokoed at it and see if they are interpreting the results in a logical manner. If they are..cool..if not, when then I can say its a article with spin.

Chesna