The school district where my son goes to school has guidelines for how much homework students should have at night. For grades K-2, it's 10 minutes a day. His math homework alone is at least that (some days it's 3 pages of math drills).
Add in daily spelling plus phonics exercises or a book report and it's at least 20 minutes. On top of that, they are supposed to do 15 minutes of reading.
Needless to say, doing homework can be quite a struggle, particularly after school when there are other activities (mostly medical appointments) that push homework off until after dinner. And then we are looking at roughly 45 minutes of homework, including complaints, stalling and tantrums. I'm sure there is great benefit in doing the extra practice, drills and reading, but at what cost?
Some argue that homework only hinders the joy of learning and it has been found that homework in the elementary years does not actually make a difference in the child's achievement. On the contrary, homework tends to squash the child's natural interest in learning and it is recommended that extra reading be assigned only to pursue the child's other interests.
I really can't complain too much. But, when Emma starts school too, I don't know where I'll find the time to help them both out with their combined homework needs.
For those parents out there, what do you think about homework? How does it fare in your house? Do you feel that the extra work is helpful, or does it just end up putting extra stress on the family?
What kids want
The Case Against Homework: How Homework Is Hurting Children and What Parents Can Do About It
The Homework Myth: Why Our Kids Get Too Much of a Bad Thing
Closing the Book on Homework: Enhancing Public Education and Freeing Family Time (Teaching/Learning Social Justice)
The End of Homework: How Homework Disrupts Families, Overburdens Children, and Limits Learning
The Battle Over Homework: Common Ground for Administrators, Teachers, and Parents