Sunday, May 27, 2012

Giving weight to homework

Presently, teachers have wide range in determining the amount of homework, how to grade it, and the weight it has in the grade. Much of the debate centers on the type and amount of homework. I think its weight needs more discussion. There was a recent movement in Los Angeles to cap homework at 10% of the grade. I wrote an op-ed piece in the LA Daily News on that debate. It seems to me that a 10% limit on factoring homework into the grade along with a standard grade of 60% for homework not done would go far in reducing the severe penalties that go with homework noncompliance, send parents into a frenzy, and work counter to the goals of motivating children and helping them succeed at school. Even if the school does not accept this as across-the-board policy, It would still be helpful as a standard provision available in 504 plans.

Dr. Kenneth Goldberg is a clinical psychologist with 35 years of professional experience in dealing with many different psychological issues. He is the author of The Homework Trap: How to Save the Sanity of Parents, Students and Teachers and currently works in his own private practice.

Visit the The Homework Trap website


Hugh O'Donnell said...

Dr. Goldberg, if the purpose of a report card grade, as most folks will agree, is to report what a student knows, understands, and can do relative to course learning goals, then homework, unless it is a summative assessment (veritably the work of the student), has no place in a report card grade.

I realize that your position is not to intrude on educator prerogatives, but some of those educators need some educating.

Hugh O'Donnell said...

BTW, my blog, The Thoughtful Teacher, is on WordPress.

If you're of a mind to, check out some of my posts on grading (the search function will take you there).