Too Much Homework

Once again, when I need to tackle the hard topics I turn to my hero/guru: my mom. She was the director of a nursery school and for more than 30 years has run a small private school. I wanted to know her take on homework.

Obviously this isn’t yet an issue with Vivien, but the public elementary school near us that she will probably go to scares me a bit. It’s 60% Korean, and academically they ain’t kidding around! I see the little ones with wheelie bags. And with No Child Left Behind, arts have been thrown in the garbage.

Oliver has a fair bit of homework, which I used to help with a bit. But starting around 6th grade, when I would ask, “Do you need some help?” he would give me a look like, “Do you really think you can be of any help?” Frankly, I really couldn’t.

6 thoughts on “Too Much Homework

  1. I completely agree with your mom concerning the correlation between obesity and excess amounts of homework! Sure, more “screen time” plays a part too (i.e., television and computer), but researchers at the University of Michigan found that 6- to 9-year-old children did more than two hours of homework a week in 1997, up from 44 minutes in 1981. Kids 9-12 were buckling down for more than 3 and a half hours, an increase of about an hour since 1981. (San Francisco Chronicle) And that was data from 1997! What parent can even fit in free play time or sports AND make sure their children get to sleep at an early hour? Ah well, it’s a battle each of us as parents will have to take up in our individual schools, I’m afraid.

  2. I’m with your mom! I am a “retired to motherhood” early childhood educator and mother of a 19yr old college student, 16yr old hs student and almost 3 yr old. I taught kindergarten at a small Catholic school for 6 years and hate the way K-5 is becoming first grade etc.
    Childhood is too short as it is….what is the rush!
    As far as homework goes, amen AtillaTheMum!
    Say the kid gets home 3ish and has a 8 to 9ish bedtime, they have precious few hours to eat, bathe, spend time w/ family, do homework, participate in any extracirriculars and horror of horrors, play w/ their friends, like a good American citizen!
    I could rant about this for days, oh and scr*w no child left behind. Once again an example of politicians legislating education, it doesn’t work.
    By the by, I love your blog and look forward to my daily visit!

  3. thanks Attilla and Kristie, ( good stats mom!) Hard to buck the trend, but it’s god to be aware of it. I’m no genius, but I don’t remember any homework till 8th grade. I mean except, color in a the states in the map type one sheets once and a while. I graduated from college.

  4. love you Jody! thanks.
    Well, If I had a nickel for every “wanna be View” audition I’ve been on. A big part of the problem is casting. they one a woman of every color– usually all size zeroes. They don’t pick woman who have different accomplishments, an author, sports, what have you. And they never get past a pilot.
    It’s harder than it looks to have the convo they have on the View or Regis and Kelly.

    I sort pooped out on pitching my own ideas a while ago. maybe I will find my steam.

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