Homework during the elementary school years

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Homework during the elementary school years

There has been a lot of hubbub around homework these days. How much homework should my kid have? Does my kid have too much? How come they don’t have enough? Here is the bottom line – there has been no research that shows any academic benefit to homework in the elementary years. There is no correlation between homework in the elementary years and future success for a kid. In fact, there is not even a correlation for homework in the elementary years and things like teaching the kid responsibility, or teaching them how to be… take care of themselves and be responsible for their own things. There’s no correlation between anything with the elementary homework and the future. So what you want to do as a parent is encourage free reading. You want to encourage kids to pick what they want to read, love reading, enjoy it and read regularly. There is a connection between free reading and doing better academically in future years. What do you do if your school has a lot of homework and your kid is in first grade or second grade? You don’t want to see your kid coming home with more than about 10 minutes per grade level if at all. And if that’s happening, you have to be an advocate. You have to go and talk to the teacher and talk to the school and let them know that this is not working out at home.

View Denise Pope, PhD's video on Homework during the elementary school years...


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Denise Pope, PhD

Senior Lecturer & Author

Denise Pope, PhD, is a Senior Lecturer at the Stanford University School of Education. For the past 13 years, she has specialized in student engagement, curriculum studies, qualitative research methods, and service learning. She is co-founder of Challenge Success, a research and intervention project that aims to reduce unhealthy pressure on youth and champions a broader vision of youth success. Challenge Success is an expanded version of the SOS: Stressed-Out Students project that Dr. Pope founded and directed from 2003-2008. She lectures nationally on parenting techniques and pedagogical strategies to increase student health, engagement with learning, and integrity. Her book, Doing School: How We Are Creating a Generation of Stressed Out, Materialistic, and Miseducated Students was awarded Notable Book in Education by the American School Board Journal, 2001. Dr. Pope is a three time recipient of the Stanford University School of Education Outstanding Teacher and Mentor Award.  Prior to teaching at Stanford, Dr. Pope taught high school English in Fremont, CA and college composition and rhetoric courses at Santa Clara University. She lives in Los Altos, CA with her husband and three children.

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