Students, do you think you’re getting a great education because you always have tons of homework to do? It might be time to rethink things. Because new research shows that kids who study too much actually perform worse on standardized tests. 

And that’s not all. Stanford researchers found that high school students who are swamped with homework often suffer from poor mental and physical health because they’re studying instead of exercising or sleeping. Both of which have been shown to have a positive impact on learning. 

Duke University social psychologist Dr. Harris Cooper points out that in elementary school, homework is really just to get kids into the habit of studying. He also found that at the middle school level, students stop absorbing information after the 90-minute homework mark. And high-schoolers learn increasingly less starting somewhere around the two-hour homework mark. That’s why Dr. Cooper recommends that students be given no more than 10 minutes of homework per grade level per night, which means, a maximum of one hour of homework per night for a 6th grader. 

Based on that new research, a lot of school districts are reevaluating their homework policies. For example, the Los Angeles Unified School District now insists that homework can account for only 10-percent of a student’s grade. 

But teachers need to pay closer attention to their assignments, too. Research shows that the majority of teachers underestimate the amount of homework they give by 50-percent. Which means, an assignment they think will take 30 minutes can actually take an hour. 

So do you have too much homework? Do you think it affects your grades? Parents, weigh in too!

 

Lesson Expert

Jennifer Boller

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