Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Homework - do we really need it?

As a child I hated homework and now that I'm a parent I hate it even more. It seems to rob the kids of having any opportunity to spend time running around outside after spending all those hours at schools. Even more so in Israel, where children study 6 days a week.

But now I feel like someone's proven what I've been feeling for years. According to Sara Bennett and Nancy Kalish in their book "The Case Against Homework" , there is almost no evidence that homework helps elementary school students achieve academic success and there is little evidence that it helps older students. Yet daily, children around the world are heavily burdened with homework. This is even harder for the day school child with longer school hours. Do we really need to put our children through the angst of daily homework? Are we needlessly robbing our children of the sleep and play, and exercise time they need for proper physical, emotional, and neurological development?

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