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christine_8e

Does homework do more harm than good?

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Homework has been part of children's life for a long time. Many students complain about it. But how much of the time when they are said to be doing homework, they have a game minimized when using the computer or just getting distracted? Moreover, students often say that a good teacher will not need to set any homework if it is all uderstood in class but we must ask ourselves: what is the definition of understanding and what is the meaning of forgetting. Don't forget, many students do disrupt the class and some teachers can't handle it. Then can you say that good teachers can turn students into angels for an hour? There aren't that many good teachers so they should respect their own and respect homework.

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I've always had a bit of a problem with this no homework thing... I teach IB history. In order to do well in the examination, students are supposed to display a knowledge of historiography. How are they supposed to obtain this unless they read? Am I supposed to read the stuff to them in class? Or should I sit and watch them read? I suppose I would then the "facilitating" their learning rather than teaching! No, I really don't think it's unreasonable to expect students to do a reasonable amount of reading at home, and possibly some writing assignments to test their comprehension of what they have read.

Again, success in the examination depends on essay-writing skills. I don't think it's an efficient use of class time for students to spend an hour writing a practice essay. That's better one at home as well.

The reason homework has received a bad press in the past few years is more connected with the assignment of inappropriate work to be done at home...

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When I was at school I never did my homework. My punishment was that I left school without any qualifications.

Later I went to university. I soon realised that you did most of your learning outside the confines of the university teaching rooms. It would be impossible to survive at university without doing your homework (or more correctly, your own work).

The main issue for teachers is to set homework that is exciting to do. So much so that it is not seen as work. Easier said than done of course. But it is possible.

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I was very conscientious about doing homework at school, and I left school with a stack of good examination qualifications.

When I went to university I quickly realised that the lecture was a pretty inefficient way of imparting knowledge. I therefore attended the minimum number of lectures that I could get away with, spending my time more fruitfully reading recommended works in the university's excellent library. I got a good honours degree.

When I developed an interest in ICT I attended a one-week course on Computing in the Humanities (back in 1979). This was enough to get me going. Since then, everything that I have learned about ICT is the result of self-tuition.

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When I developed an interest in ICT I attended a one-week course on Computing in the Humanities (back in 1979). This was enough to get me going. Since then, everything that I have learned about ICT is the result of self-tuition.

The role of all school work (including homework) should be to create independent, life-long learners. It is the only type of education that really matters.

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