“Back to school” also includes “back to homework drama” for not just kids, but for their parents, too. Some emerging research, however, suggests that more is not better when it comes to homework. Studies now suggest that, far from helping kids, too much homework too early in their academic lives can actually be detrimental to both short- and long-term learning.
One study published in The American Journal of Family Therapy surveyed almost 1,200 parents and revealed that kids in kindergarten, first and second grades may be getting too much after-school work than is actually beneficial.
While the 10-minute rule has been widely accepted by educators and parents alike (starting in first grade, kids get 10 minutes of homework, and another 10 minutes is added for every year in school), many parents know that kids often bring home far more work than can be completed in that time frame. And the zero-homework rule for kindergarteners is often ignored.
Still others are questioning whether the 10-minute rule, even when observed, truly benefits kids. In an article published on TODAY.com, Denise Pope, a Stanford University education professor and author of the new book “Overloaded and Underprepared,” said there’s negligible evidence of a correlation between homework and achievement.
In a Psychology Today article, neuropsychological educator Rebecca Jackson highlighted research done at Brown University “which found levels of family stress surrounding homework that are detrimental to the emotional, social, and physical health of children—and their families. It was 200% higher for families whose parents do not hold a college degree.”
So is any at home work proven to help kids learn? “The only type of homework that’s proven to be beneficial to elementary school students is free reading, and the fact that the kids can choose what they are reading makes the difference,” Pope said to TODAY.com.