September is the back-to-school month almost everywhere in the world, and while parents are breathing a sigh of relief, the kids are not always so happy. It means getting back to early mornings, long days in the classroom, and back to homework.
As most of us know, doing homework is a normal part of the school. We’ve all done it, and we’ve all dreaded it. However, one teacher has decided to take a stand against it.
A teacher in Fort Worth, Texas, named Brandy Young send a note to the parents of her students with her new homework policy.
She put his policy up two years ago, and she’s got a few modifications to it this year. While many students love the idea of being homework-free, there are still some students that actually want homework (to put it better, there are some kids that really need the extra work).
Young will assign extra work to the students who ask for it, and she will also assign some extra practice if a student is really struggling. She wants to make sure that she keeps in contact with the parents whose children are given extra work, in order to encourage them to help their kids understand more.
“Not assigning homework doesn’t change the fact that the kids who need extra practice the most usually don’t have the necessary support at home. It’s a battle that educators are used to fighting, and it isn’t going away any time soon.” – she says.
The teacher says that she strongly feels that all work a student is assigned should be beneficial for them, and students do not need to do work just for the sake of being done.
“Student work, regardless of when and where it’s done, should be meaningful, engaging, and relevant. No packets ever. Period.
Kids can conquer mountains when given encouragement, choices, and support! They want and need to be nurtured as a whole child. I believe the no-packet theory supports that effort.”- she adds.
Brandy Young is not the only teacher that is taking a stand against homework though, as the Superintendent of Marion County banned homework for all of the 31 elementary schools in her district.
“No traditional homework, no work sheets, no endless pages of workbooks. Instead, our children are reading aloud with their parents at least 20 minutes a night.” – said Dr. Heidi Maier.
Her rule was changed a bit due to pressure from teachers, so the new rule is that teachers can now only assign “meaningful” homework.
According to the author of ‘The Homework Myth’, Alfie Kohn, homework can actually be harmful to kids. He thinks that homework causes frustration, unhappiness, and family conflict. It also often makes children less excited about learning, and it leaves them less time to pursue other interests or just enjoy their childhoods.