According to Rabbi Shmuley, homework for today's children is getting out of control. When children are given excessive amounts of homework, they become pressured, anxious, nervous and even depressed, he says. So what is the purpose of homework, and is that purpose being fulfilled? Rabbi Shmuley talks about the negative consequences of too much homework and why teachers and parents need to rein it in.
Rabbi Shmuley says the point of doing homework is to get children to show initiative and help them absorb their lessons. These objectives can be met with 90 minutes of schoolwork a night, but when homework exceeds two or three hours a night, it begins to encroach on family life and a child's well-being. Children become overworked and detached from their family and begin to hate school. "All pursuit of knowledge becomes a chore, a burden," Rabbi Shmuley says.
Excessive homework also interferes with a child's play time, Rabbi Shmuley says. They have no free time for hobbies or time to develop healthy interests in reading or music, he says.
"Homework is a vital part of a child's education because it teaches them to develop independent work habits. But when it's overdone, it makes a child nervous, stressed and unhappy. More importantly, it snuffs out the very joy of learning and pulls a child away from the family. Therefore, homework should be assigned by teachers in moderation."
Printed from Oprah.com on Wednesday, December 4, 2013