Where's the Time?

Between school, sports, and extracurricular activities, students today have no extra time to come home and enjoy some time for leisure activities. Too much homework is pushing high school students to stay up later just to get their work done. By the end of the school week, students are exhausted and get only a minimal break before they have to go back and do the same thing the following week. Homework is a necessity for learning; a student will go home and work on problems on their own, self learning, and going back to class with knowledgeable ideas and helpful questions for the learning environment. However too much homework ends up becoming ineffective for the learning environment; this is due to lack of time in the students day, to alleviate this problem the homework policy should be changed.

Students need time to go home and relax after a long busy day. They don’t need to be buried with homework every night, a balance between the two, homework and relaxing is necessary to maintaining a healthy education. Most students are highly involved in their academics and extracurricular activities today because it is a necessity for college to be a well rounded student. My high school’s student handbook suggests that students should have roughly 90 to 180 minutes of homework per night. Although teachers know that they, at maximum, should only be giving about a half an hour of homework a night, the tendency is to give more. Many teachers, such as math may give more homework than other teachers because they think other teachers aren’t giving enough.

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This adds to the maximum of 180 minutes a day. Often when teachers give projects, they don’t let up on their day to day homework which just adds more onto a student’s already full plate. Students like Bradley a sophomore, says “I don’t have time for all this homework. Playing soccer, I go straight from school to the field, and by the time I get home and start my homework it’s already 6:00. On game days (two games a week) I get home at 6:30 or later.

Club meetings will take up another hour from my day, and I’m left with only about two hours before I go to sleep.” To finish homework, students like Bradley have to stay up later than they wish just to finish their homework. This leaves students extremely tired when they wake up in the morning after only getting a maximum of maybe eight hours of sleep. “Not getting enough sleep can limit the body to learn, listen, and concentrate during school.” In a way the more homework teachers give, the less effective it is because students end up just being tired in school and don’t learn when the teacher is actually teaching the material. “Increasing homework loads is likely to aggravate tensions.

.. thereby generating more inequality and eroding the quality of overall education,” said David Baker a Professor in education and sociology at Penn. State University. To fix the homework policy at schools across the nation, two approaches can be taken.

The first is that all departments at school coordinate, therefore the five major courses give homework one set day a week and can give tests and quizzes one set day a week for each. This would limit the overload of homework on an individual day, and keep a fairly consistent schedule that would be easy for students to deal with. The other option would be that depending on the grade you have in the class the homework would come accordingly. In this way a student may make the most of their time with the classes they need to do better in, rather than spending a lot of their time doing homework for classes where they understand the material. Either one of these options would make homework become a positive learning tool that would benefit the students, especially those with little time left in their days. Students in today’s world are doing multiple extra curricular activities after a long school day, therefore they have little time for homework.

With colleges expecting the world from every student that applies, high school students feel like they need to do a little bit of everything. Although schools seem to have a policy in place for the amount of homework daily, it doesn’t really work, and teachers end up giving more homework, which eventually leads to assignments being less and less effective. Changing the homework policies at school is all it will take to make homework and healthy and helpful part of the school curriculum. As you see too much homework is ineffective to learning the material, but with some change it can be an important part of learning.