Thursday, January 5, 2012
Philadelphia Inquirer article.
On January 3, the Philadelphia Inquirer ran an excellent article on homework, highlighting the debate and identifying what many schools are doing to make homework more meaningful and more manageable. I applaud this article along with the efforts of so many involved. Yet, I want to highlight one detail, where it is noted that the Lower Merion School District has decided that children should do ten minutes per grade per night. This is the Harris Cooper standard. Harris Cooper is considered the foremost homework researcher and its a standard he's advocated at different times. Personally, I think it's a bit too much, yet not a bad standard, particularly if educators work to develop more meaningful forms of homework to give. But what's ten minutes? Ten minutes by the clock? The teacher's estimate? What the average child can do in ten minutes? Unless we agree to define homework time by the clock, lower penalties for work not done, and vest parents with authority (after all, who else certifies what the child did), we'll still have kids intractibly crushed under homework demands, simply because they work more slowly than the rest. Time must be time, not anyone's best guess. To read the article, click http://articles.philly.com/2012-01-03/news/30583510_1_homework-policy-middle-school-gfs/4. Click here to return to my website, www.thehomeworkdoctor.com.