#28daysofwriting I don’t like homework

Homework. It’s value is always passionately debated and a favourite of the media. Yesterday, this article did the rounds. You are either for it or against.

I’m against it but not for any of the reasons mentioned in the article. In fact I think the article shows a very narrow understanding of parents (except maybe middle class parents). I have many reasons for not liking homework but the one reason that made me change my teaching practice was that in my experience homework is inequitable. It is just another way of showing the kids that have parents who are capable of supporting and value their education and students who don’t.

A number of years ago I cut out homework and take home assessment tasks. I came to the realisation that they did not show me what my students were capable of doing. They showed me how much support they had at home. I encourage my students to study. This is different to homework. I encourage my students to find correlations between what they are learning in school and their life outside of school but I don’t set formal homework.

The results of my students did change. Equitably, for assessment tasks they all had my equal and unwavering support and attention based on their individual needs so their level of achievement, interest, skill development and knowledge retention increased. I was happy I didn’t have to mark homework, my students were happy they didn’t have to do homework or receive a consequence for not doing homework and parents didn’t even notice.

Before setting your next lot of homework ask yourself what outcome it is really assessing, maybe it is not an educational one.


One thought on “#28daysofwriting I don’t like homework

  1. tombarrett (@tombarrett) February 23, 2015 at 10:41 pm Reply

    Thanks for voicing your experience and concern here. It has been something we have been rumbling about as parents this year. It certainly does force an interaction at home (sometimes about learning) – sadly this interaction is not always a positive one. I think I might make a mark in the sand similar to you about my take on it. Thanks for adding to the discussion.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: