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Homework: The Effect on Kids and Their Immediate Families

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800px-College_Math_PapersThe scene appeared as a war zone. Papers and erasers were flying around the kitchen table like bullets. Parents were yelling at kids and kids were yelling back.

It all started on November 16, 2015 when Ricky Johnson and his parents were engaged in a heated argument. The cause of the commotion was Ricky’s mound of homework. Ricky was stuck at the kitchen table working vigorously on his work for the past three hours, and the Johnson’s dinner was being pushed back.

Van Thompson, author of What Negative Effects Does Homework Have on a Student’s Social & Family Life claims, “The amount of homework has increased by 51% since 1981” (Thompson). This evidence is significant because students now a days are needing to juggle schoolwork and after school activities. The amount of homework assigned each night has skyrocketed over the last 30 years or so. Also, “Homework can cause disputes between kids and parents” (Thompson). Students become frustrated after hours of homework that they actually begin to take out their frustration on their family members. Ricky was frustrated after his math homework took three hours to complete at home and he began to talk back to his parents, which resulted in a punishment.

Fifteen random students were surveyed at Seneca Valley Middle School, where 13 students said homework consistently interferes with their lives and family time after school. This evidence is significant because the majority of students are affected by piles of homework assigned each night. What is revealed here is that students’ family and social time is deducted or taken away completely by hours of work. Underlying these actions is the issue that homework stresses not only students, but also their immediate family. What some readers may not realize is homework interferes with routines like dinner. With lots of busy schedules, sometimes dinner is the only time kids and parents can interact after a long day. With homework, kids sometimes can’t participate in these times and are often doing homework instead, which delays dinner.

To solve the disruptions at home because of homework, the time students are in school they should be doing more important assignments. Robert Marzano and Debra Pickering, authors of The Cause For and Against Homework, claim, “Teachers should assign more valuable assignments” (Marzano Pickering). This quote is significant because students should be completing beneficial work that helps them understand a concept, compared to busy work, which is the cause for lots of issues away from school. The less busy work assigned would decrease the disputes at home and kids similar to Ricky would become less frustrated.

Picture this, kids being able to go home after a successful day at school, and being able to relax and spend time with friends and family. No busy work to fight over, yet they are still working hard and learning things throughout the school day. The war against homework can be solved.

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