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Should Students Have Homework?


Homework. An ongoing debate for years and years! A lot of people think that homework is beneficial and important for a child’s education; others think that this can lead to unhealthy levels of stress and is way too time consuming. While Some students believe that homework is helpful to their learning, some go as far as blame increased anxiety and depression on it.

Pros and Cons
On homework’s side, it can help you maintain the knowledge learned in class and further expand on it. It also helps teachers understand the level their students are at. Homework can help students practice problem solving, work independently and gives them an opportunity to review the material.
On the other hand, students already spend 6-8 hours at school a day and usually have a test to study for, sports, clubs, social activities and more. Plus, with every class giving assignments you could spend up to three or more hours a night on homework. They’re either too tired out or left with no time to do things their heart desires and leaves them bored and run down.
Personally, I believe neither side. I believe a bit of homework is no trouble. However, too much homework (more than an hour and a half for middle school kids) is not acceptable. Don’t agree? Let me explain…

History time
Roberto Nevilis, a school teacher from Venice, Italy in 1905, is often credited for the creation of homework, he created the concept of homework to punish students who didn’t display good understanding of his teachings in class.

Although he was credited with this, Ancient philosophers would research their lesson plans out of their classes and Medieval Monks used to memorize songs and practice singing at home.
The term homework was traced back to ancient Rome in writings of Pliny the Younger telling students to practice their work not in class. German Philosopher Johann Gottlieb Fichte developed the idea that homework was mandatory back in 1762-1814, thinking it could help control people.

The idea of homework was spread through Europe in the 19th century. It quickly became a normal thing for students everywhere. Did you know in 1901 California passed a law that stated no students under 15 can have homework (even though it changed back a decade later)?

In the 1930s, ACHA declared that homework was child labor! But in the 1940s-1950s, homework was deemed necessary, again. Kids started writing essays over breaks and the summer and these assignments still exist today.

Knowing that homework was used as punishment and was deemed child labor, do you think homework is right? Starting back in 2022, homework in schools became a big discussion again. According to multiple sources and studies, over 60% of college and high school students have mental health problems such as anxiety, depression and more due to a simple thing like homework. Multiple studies have shown homework actually has a negative effect on grades, having to do worksheets instead of figuring it out for themselves. Some of that might just be because it’s a lot and can be very overwhelming, and some of it could be because they’re being deprived of their basic likes and needs. That could range from seeing friends, reading, playing sports or even sleep. But instead, they’re spending all their time on homework.

A scenario…
Say you have school starting at 7:30 so you wake up at 6:30 AM. You’re at school until 3:30 PM including a 30 minute lunch break (and a 5 minute recess).
Next, you have volleyball practice until 6:30 PM and come home to 2 hours of homework. Leaving you at 8:30 PM. Not that bad, right? But you actually had 2 tests that day, a lecture, took lots of notes to look over and had to work on an essay. You’re tired and want to sleep but told your friends you would go to a movie with them. You go until 10:30 PM and eat dinner and do basic essentials like taking a shower and brushing your teeth. You finish around 11:30 but now your up, lying in bed. You have another test tomorrow. Your parents want you to do well. Did you study enough? You’re a little shaky on a part of the topic, so you pull out your homework again and go over it. Tired and confused, you try to make sense of it. Maybe you shouldn’t have gone out with your friends, too much to do. Maybe tomorrow you’ll skip volleyball practice.
You finally get to sleep a little past midnight and try your hardest to stay awake and do well during the day. That next day, you skip volleyball practice and your track meet because you have an even bigger test tomorrow. You study and do your homework till it’s late and you can barely stay awake.
The next day you take your test, do fine, but now you’re tired and say no to all your plans with friends, you go to half of your volleyball practice and go straight to sleep preparing for the next week. Push the homework off until tomorrow and your plans with your friends… and sports and whatever else.

What do you think?
Knowing all of this, do you agree that homework should be kept to a minimum? Homework shouldn’t expand past a certain amount of time, depending on your schedule and age, this could vary. The idea that there shouldn’t be homework could be extreme, but it becomes obvious it’s too much when homework is causing anxiety, sacrificing kids’ passions, and over scheduling students.
At this point, is it really worth it?

We Want to Hear from You!
If you’re a parent, is this what you want for your kids?

If you’re a student, what are your thoughts on homework? Is it stressing you out? How much homework do you have at night? Feel free to comment down below your answers or any more questions!


Who Invented Homework? A Big Question Answered with Facts


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  • M

    Mrs. BartholomewMay 16, 2024 at 9:34 am

    Well written article, Olivia! You present some compelling arguments. It’s always such a fine line when it comes to homework. Hopefully, most students can find a balance.

  • M

    Mr. GMay 9, 2024 at 11:57 am

    Great article on Homework! Olviia.. your points are spot on. its one reason i give a week for homework assignments!