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Home : 2001 : Jun : 2

    By Cathy-Dee

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    You probably should find out what the school policy is. Some schools do not have policies and others are quite rigid in them. I thought I heard somewhere about 10 minutes per grade level - so 10 minutes for first grade, 20 minutes - 2nd grade - and so on.
    I'm not sure of the exact breakdown.

    I think homework is important in two ways, one it does prepare students for the "higher" grades including University where you do assignments at home. So giving them homework helps them to develop those skills at an earlier age and also to learn how to manage their time at home. It also gives parents a chance to see what their child is learning and how they are able to do the work.

    And it depends on what the definition of "homework" is. I consider home reading and studying for spelling words "homework". So I have weekly homework like the spelling words and then daily homework like the reading. Sometimes I will send home some math work or other work just for extra practice. I teach first grade and I do not believe in overloading them at this age.

    I have taught older grades and I know with my third graders I often sent home a few different types of comprehension reading sheets, math sheets, etc., for extra practice. I did find that those students who did do their homework seemed to do better on the tests. But this is also probably because those students who did their homework also seemed to have parents who were more involved in their learning.

    I do think 2 hours in any of the elementary grades is overdoing it. Unless it is for a project such as a science fair project where the student might spend 2 hours one evening or on a weekend working on it, but then it wouldn't have been assigned for just that one night. I would hate to think of any child getting home at 3:30 - having a snack, then perhaps enjoying some play time - then having supper let's say at 5:00, then doing homework from 6 to 8 p.m. and then going to bed. What a life!
    And in today's world families are busier too. I think we have to keep things in context.

    So although homework is important and can help kids learn and practice some of those areas they are having difficulty with, it is also equally important to balance the amount of time required to be spent doing homework.

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