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Can homework be harmful for children?
Can homework be harmful for children?

Children don't like to do their homework, and it's no secret. But it makes kids smarter, you say. And we will answer that it is not always, and explain why.

Why homework hurts students

Watch out, parents. Research gives students more excuses not to do their homework

In the mid-2000s, a Duke University researcher named Harris Cooper conducted one of the most comprehensive studies on homework effectiveness to date. The study looked at the perceived correlation between homework and student success. The results were not very impressive, and the scientist concluded that there was no strong evidence for a link between homework performance and schoolchildren's skills.

A 2012 study of more than 18,000 grade 10 students found that an increase in homework may be the result of students having to master large amounts of information in a limited amount of time. Therefore, part of the school curriculum has to be translated into independent study at home. However, students who spend a lot of time to understand difficult material themselves do not actually get smarter, but only get confused and lose motivation to learn.


Can homework hurt kids?

It turned out that yes, homework can do some harm. In 2013, another study was conducted, in which 4317 students from ten good schools were observed. The results showed that students who spent a lot of time on homework were more active at school, but also experienced stress and health problems. It is important to note that all these children were from wealthy families.

And if we look at how housework affects the gap between children from rich and low-income families, we find a very sad picture. Research shows that increasing the number of homework assignments contributes to lower academic performance for poor children who are unable to complete assignments on time. For example, they may not have a safe place to study, or their parents may not have the knowledge and time to help them with their lessons.


This does not mean that wealthy children are guaranteed to benefit from doing a lot of housework. Studies supporting homework often indicate that it gives parents the opportunity to participate in the learning process and monitor their child's progress. But work in 2014 showed that helping parents who have forgotten the material (or never really understood it) can harm a child's ability to learn.

How to do your homework without pain?

Be that as it may, in many schools, homework still needs to be done. And for this process to be enjoyable for both children and parents, you need to choose the right approach. For example, you can use the spaced repetition technique, which is a gradual repetition of material over small but steadily increasing intervals. For example, a child was asked to learn a theorem with a proof in geometry.

And in order not to sit over the textbook the night before the lesson, you can do differently - schedule that the child will begin to study the material, for example, five days before the test. On the first day, he will repeat the theorem three times with a break of several hours, the next day he will repeat it twice, with a long break in time, and so on.

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