MingYan Z. New York

Too Much Homework

Keeping a balance between homework and free time is healthy for students.

Dear Future President:

I say give a kids a break… Let kids enjoy life before life gets too tough. Everyone has experienced the pain of doing homework. The amount of time spent on homework gets longer as students go through their school lives. A reasonable amount of homework is a good thing. Homework clearly can have benefits such as the development of good organization habits and the review of materials. However, too much homework can have too many negative effects, which can contribute to negative outcomes. So, let's give students less homework. Too much homework leads to more stress, not enough sleep, no time with families, no time for extracurricular activities….So, I think if we can reduce homework, children will have more time to sleep, spend time with family and to participate in more extracurricular activities which is important to students to release stress.

Too much homework means less time to sleep. Students spend a lot of time on their homework. One study looked at students who have been sleeping very late because of their homework. For one student, “Each of his Advanced Placement classes had 1-2 hours of assigned homework per night and he was not routinely finishing homework until 11 PM or 12 AM...If the student goes to sleep at 10PM and gets up at 6 AM ( a typical wake time around here for high school students), this allows 8 hours of sleep. However, the typical teenager requires between 8.5-9 hours of sleep per night, so even a teen with good sleep habits generally sleep deprived.” (drcraigcanapari) Teenagers need sufficient sleep to ensure that the next day is full of energy, plenty of energy can ensure that we can better focus on learning. A lack of sleep will lead to dizziness and a lack of focus on studying. Therefore, sufficient sleep is the basis for ensuring better learning the next day. According to Dr. Craig Canapari, “Sleep deprivation in teenagers is an epidemic here in the US, with up to 90% of teenagers not getting enough sleep on school nights.”(drcraigcanapari) If the students sleep earlier, they do not have enough time to finish their’s homework because  teens should sleep at least 8.5 hours per night. They should go to sleep at latest 10 o'clock because normally schools start by 8 am. This means they probably need to finish homework before 9:30. If a student has 3 hours of homework they should start to do homework at 6:30. That make students did not have time for family and extracurricular activities. Also, some students need to work after school to support their families. For example, one of my friends who is a senior has a part time job after school everyday. She gets off work at almost 10pm and every night she starts doing homework at 10:30pm. If she needs to complete homework, she doesn’t go to sleep until after 12am. She is then tired at school the next day. 

Too much homework can result in stress and depression. All of the students should have some free time to relax and keep their lives balanced. According to one source, “Spending too much time struggling with homework can harm your child's health, worrying about whether they can do it can make them nervous, anxious and lacking in confidence…” (netdoctor) Students work for 7 hours at school already, a reasonable amount of homework is good, one hour of homework is perfectly enough. However, many students have 2-3 hours of homework per night, and the premise is that this homework can help students, however some of the homework is just copying from the textbook. That’s not useful. Also, too much homework makes older children more pressure because they have more responsibilities, “For older children, school work may also compete with part-time and casual work. In years 11 and 12, it can be difficult to manage homework with independent study.” (goodschools) All of those things can put students into the depression, it will make them feel stress and reduced interest in learning. Also sometimes when the students feel stress or depression it results in lower grades because they don’t have motivation for learning.

Some people think that homework can help students develop their time management and study skills. According to one source, “Homework sets children up to manage their time and plan out study schedules, which are very useful skills to have when they enter senior high school years, tertiary study and eventually the workforce. Completing homework early in the schooling years ensures that it becomes a habit — not an inconvenience.” (goodschools) It’s true, some homework will be helpful for the students, but some will not. However, students who have excess homework will disturb life balance. Even if the homework has benefits for the students, some negative effects are more than the benefit. They will not get the balance between the rest and work, also will make child feel weary towards learning. “Too much homework will not be able to balance their life, which could impact their 8-8-8 circadian rhythm to life where eight hours work, eight hours play and eight hours rest (sleep)” (factualfacts).   Some students will even skip school because of too much homework. They will feel tired and it makes them not want to go school or afraid of school.

Too much homework will not help children advance in school, in fact it could well have the reverse effect entirely. It can have many negative impacts on your teen. Too much homework to make sleep time shorter, the next day they may be in poor spirits, can not  focus on listening to the teacher's lectures in the class, and sometimes even fall asleep in classes. If the students do not finish homework, they will feel pressure, and feel depressed.  Too much homework will reduce free time, time for activities also will be reduced. It is not conducive to our health, and having a healthy body is important in order to learning and grow,  and for our mental health and physical health. So, I think for all those reasons, we should limit the amount of homework students get per night.