Elementary school homework

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from pingo. Show pingo's posts

    Elementary school homework

    Parents, this the US of A --- and we are behind the brightest in the rest of the world.
    We have the best resources in the world - and still our children are sobehind in so many of the subjects thaught in our schools.
    2 hours of homework is NOT too much. Asian and European school children have a lot more homework than that.
    I was brought up in Europe. Not only was my school day from 8 to3 (everyday including Saturday) - but I would come home - have asnack and play for maybe 1/ 2 to 1 hour. - Then hit thebooks, have dinner and continue doing homework until bed time.
    Americans just don't get it. Work is hard and the sooner you instill i that in your children, the much better off they are.
    My children started in public school. Our town was supposedly havingone of the better school systems - (That' s why we moved here in thefirst place). But when our children came home from school at 12:30without any homework to do - "Did it in class" --- I smelled rats- big ones.
    So we moved them to a private school. A very difficult and expensivedecision, mind you. But what a difference! Best thing we ever did forthem.
    At first they were shocked by the amount of homework required. But theyquickly caught up - because there was no way around it. Bring in yourhomework - or you are " dead".
    I understand, not everyone has the priveledge we had. But if you have avoice - use it. The school system in this country has a lot to bedesired - and if we don' t do something about it - the rest of theworld will run us over. And please take note --- it is alreadyhappening.
    Our children are the most valuable investment, we have.
     
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from mamalie. Show mamalie's posts

    Elementary school homework

    Bring in your homework - or you are " dead".
    I understand, not everyone has the priveledge we had. But if you have a voice - use it. The school system in this country has a lot to be desired - and if we don' t do something about it - the rest of the world will run us over. And please take note --- it is already happening.
    Our children are the most valuable investment, we have.

    As a former elementary school teacher I have seen both sides of the coin. I taught in a multiracial and multi-sociopeconomic school system. The children who had the support of parents at home who cared about education always came out the winners. The children who did not have this support felt like losers and made fewer gains; and my heart went out to those less fortunate kids. Even speaking to those parents did not change the picture. My principal was an avid believer in homework and set up a reward system for those who did their homework. There were some ,what I felt , dire consequences (i.e. detention) for those (yes, first and second graders included) who did not perform as expected. Guess who got all the rewards? Yep, the kids with the support at home. Through my years of teaching, I taught reading and writing to grades one and two, I taught grades three, four and six as contained classrooms. I could go on and on, but here was my philosophy on homework. First , second, and third graders are not mature enough to take full ownership of their homework, therefore should not be expected to perform those tasks at home. Reading at home can be done and books from school can borrowed. I had one first grader who had no one to read to, so he read to his teddy bear! Fourth grade is a good time, I thought, to start homework. The homework should reinforce what has been taught in class, not something new. There were still problems with some kids, but at least they were mature enough to understand that they were accountable. On another note, I agree that our education system needs an overhaul, but as long as Massachusetts depends on Prop. 21/2 to fund schools, there will never be equal educational benefits in the towns and cities!

     
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from FCivian. Show FCivian's posts

    Elementary school homework

    Wow . . so much confused thought there.

    1 - There is no relationship between whether a student is challenged inclass and how much homework is assigned. Not challenged in class? Theschool needs to figure out how to challenge all its students . . . andassigning more homework doesn't do that.

    2 - parochial schools and private schools did better for you? Of COURSE they would . . . they can turn away students if they wish, and those problem students go . . to the public schools that, by law, must educate all comers. It's fuzzy thinking to expect those different systems to have the same results. Maybe funds make a difference, too? Let's see . . . if the Dedham schools received 30k per student as Nobles does, and could kick out studwents like Nobles does, and could select the student body as Nobles does, I imagine the results would be fairly close, too.

    3 - 2 hours of homework for a 3rd grader? That's almost criminal negligence. Studies I saw on effectiveness and time on homework I saw when on the School Committee in my Town generally agreed that 1) time spent on homework in the primary grades did NOT affect test scores and 2) time spent on homework was driven mainly by PARENT demand, not by teachers or by educational improvements.

    In other words, parents these days expect more homework because they erroneously believe that will help their kids. Should be no surprise . . . It's a lot more work and involvement to improve a school system, and demanding more homework is so much easier to do.

     
  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from pingo. Show pingo's posts

    Elementary school homework

    mamalie, I agree with all your points, except for one - children infirst, second and third grade are not too young for homework. Homeworkmeans many things. Making a drawing of yourself or of your pet, writeyour full name down neatly 5 times etc. Small things a child in thatage bracket can manage. Small simple things, that will give thechildren a taste of responsibility and accomplishment.
    I think it is a real cop-out NOT to give children homework, justbecause some children do not have the support at home. This is not fairto the children that are bright and want to learn and excel.
    I wish all school children would have such a caring teacher as you apparently were.
     
  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from dbos. Show dbos's posts

    Elementary school homework

    I have always found it really odd how ineffective the schools are in this country. I had the unique experience of being schooled in 2 countries. I did 1-8 in Canada and 9-12 (and University) in the states. In Canada we didnt have that much more homework but we did have a much more intensive school day. We were required to learn everything from art to metal working to sewing and cooking in addition to the typical sciences and social studies, etc. There was a lot expected of us yet there was NOT A SINGLE standardized test.

    When I came to the the states I found myself waaaayyy ahead of my class mates. I was 2 years ahead in math, 2 years ahead in sciences, at least 3 years ahead in English... I dont really know how it had happened... but it did. I was frankly a "C" student in Canada and here I was A/A+ across the board! By the time I was a senior in high school I was doing mornings at HS and 2 classes a semester at the local Umass campus in the afternoon because I had "reached the end" of the high school curriculum. By the time I graduated I had enough credits to be a sophmore in University... all without even trying.

    Here is my opinion... Standardized tests are evil. they make the teacher teach for the test.... Not a curriculum that is, well, more important. Why does the government need to know which students are not passing... the teachers should know that already, right??

     
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from mamalie. Show mamalie's posts

    Elementary school homework

    You hit the nail on the head, dbos!! Standardized testing is one of the main reasons I left teaching. Some form of standardized testing was always done in school systems to inform teachers and parents of the progress children were making and in what areas these children needed help. However, the MCAS tests changed all that. It pitted child against child, school against school, school systems against school systems. I always tried to teach my lessons in ways that would help children of all learning styles. Which meant that I taught across the curriculum using art, music, literature, etc. to teach science and history. Well, the MCAS put an end to that and it was drill, drill, drill. I tried very hard to hold onto my teaching philosphy, but many things were mandated. I believe in the end all the drill compromised higher level thinking skills and imagination. I loved teaching, but the system finally got to me and I could no longer compromise what I believed were good teaching practices. I taught a college graduate class in early literacy with many students from around the country and their frustrations with standardized testing were all the same; Drill, Drill, Drill and the mandated programs that were being forced on them in the name of better test scores. However, there is a change in the air and I hope it turns things around eventually.

    Sorry about going on and on, but I was a passionate teacher and haven't discussed these issues for awhile. Thanks for letting me sound off!!

     
  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from mamalie. Show mamalie's posts

    Elementary school homework

    think it is a real cop-out NOT to give children homework, just because some children do not have the support at home.

    pingo: What I am saying is that the child needs to be mature enough to take ownership of his/her homework and consequences and that maturity comes with an older child. I certainly did not mean it was a cop-out not to give homework because of no support at home.

     
  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from mamalie. Show mamalie's posts

    Elementary school homework

    kei_o_lei, I agree with all your points.
     
  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from dbos. Show dbos's posts

    Elementary school homework

    You bring up an interesting factor... retaining passionate teachers like yourself... A quick internet seach for a entry level teacher salary in Canada shows about $50k -into the $70k range with a few years experience... In the states we're seeing an average entry level salary of $26k - YIKES!! how do you live on that?

    In addition, Canada's thriving equivalent of social security ensures that Canada's teachers are paid the same salary at retirement. That would keep me teaching! My Aunt and Uncle were both teachers, now retired and they have 2 homes and spend most of their time traveling from sunny place to sunny place... not a bad life for a couple retired teachers!

     
  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from mamalie. Show mamalie's posts

    Elementary school homework

    Studies show that most new teachers leave the profession within 3 years. One of the reasons is the salary. The other is disillusionment with the profession. In Massachusetts retirement is, at best, 80% of salary, if you have the number of years plus the right age. For most young teachers entering the profeesion today that would mean about 35 to 40 years of teaching. Let's all move to Canada!!
     

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