Healthy Grade, Unhealthy Body

“YEAR 9 student Eugenia A. worked on her homework until 11:30pm the other night. The Shelford Girls’ Grammar student spent four hours working on a writing assignment about a city sculpture. In the end she took a shower to “calm down” and called it quits”(Cook). Does this sound familiar to you? Nowadays, students are assigned an overwhelming amount of homework as a daily routine.

This cycle creates an intense stress on students and threatens their health. Therefore, teachers should reduce homework assignments by fifty percent. Teachers must reduce the amount of homework because it causes mental and physical problems in students. The research conducted by the Committee on Increasing High School Students’ Engagement and Motivation to Learn shows that the most common stressor of students is schoolwork: “When we asked students to list what caused the most stress in their lives, the majority of student comments(67.8%) were related to homework”(Winter).

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Evidenced by this research overwhelming school assignments actually put many students into excessive stress rather than providing motivation for better grades. Furthermore, students are more likely to suffer from different types of health issues. “The majority students(77.4%) also reported that they experience one or more stress-related problems:headaches, difficulty of sleeping, and/or exhaustion”(Winter). These health problems can ultimately lead to more serious problems such as depression, intervertebral disks, and other severe physical diseases that require treatments which force students to invest their time to resolve those issues. Students should not spend more time on receiving treatments when they could use their time more wisely to learn something new and beneficial.

Due to a ridiculous load of homework, many students lose their health and exciting chance to acquire new knowledge. In addition, a lack of exercise of the students caused by an overwhelming amount of homework appears to be a major problem of teens as well. “…

there is evidence that exercise actually helps with academics…physical activity has a positive impact on everything from grade point average, scores on standardized tests, and grades in specific courses to concentration, memory, and classroom behavior”(Ponte). Physical activityis essential for improving academic achievement, yet ironically students give up exercises to devote more time for good grades. Physical activities encourage students to concentrate on tasks, thus provide motivation and refresh disturbed minds.Soccer, basketball, jogging, running, or even walking in the breeze for couple minutes. Such simple activities actually will produce better results on the assignments without tremendous stresses, yet students cannot afford any second to take these actions.

Something to consider. Despite of clear evidences addressed by the medical professions,many people still claim that a certain amount of homework is necessary in order to assure the teachers that the students are covering and reviewing the materials on their own. As a matter of fact, it is statistically proved that not only the amount of homework is not increased dramatically for 13-year old students since 1980 and 1999. The survey indicates that only 31% of the students spent more than one hour to do their homework and it only increased by three points by 1999. This particular evidence convince the students and the teachers that the excessive amount of homework is being exaggerated and discriminated more severely in spite of its positive effects on the academic performances. However, a few negative consequences due to homework are more influential thanmany positive effects.

The health problems caused by too much of homework takes more efforts to recover. Most importantly, people should recognize the fact that the brain actually functions more efficiently when it allows some time-off. If students really desire to achieve high quality performance in academic at school, they must allow themselves some rest for physical activities such as sports or different things that can take away one’s attention from the stress factors. The research conducted by the University of Texas clearly demonstrate that the students who took time to rest their brains before learning has performed better on the tests while other students did not; “We think replaying memories during rest makes those earlier memories stronger, not just impacting the original content, but impacting the memories to come”(Preston). Similar to a human being, the brain also requires the rest period in order to refresh the previous knowledge as well as absorbing new materials. Just like how people feel much better and work more efficiently after they take a nap, the brain also needs a break to function more effectively.

It is not a great strategy for success to overdrive the brain while physical body is also overwhelmed disproportionately. Yes, it is crucial that students must fulfill their responsibilities by trying to perform their best in classes. However, good health is the most essential factor to achieve success in academic courses, not necessarily too much homework. Good Academic performance does not improve your health,but it is the health that improves your academics.