Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Sorry Teachers, But this Homework is Outta Control

Teachers, Teachers, come on! What are you trying to do to me? Enough with all this silly homework already!. Do the kids really need hours of homework each night? Many kids don't get home til 5 or 6pm and go to bed around 8p. They have to eat, bathe, do chores, and don't forget maybe play for a few minutes outdoors, god forbid they have an extracurricular activity. Squeeze in 2 hours or more of homework each night and jeez!

I am all about some education and studying but lately our homework load is ridiculous. The most ridiculous part is homework only counts as less than 10% of the final grade in most upper classes and the kids know it. So how do I stress the importance of doing all this homework if this is the case? When they are that exhausted from all day at school and then hours of homework  are they really learning or are they just trying to get it done? If homework is that important I say make it 45% of the grade at least 30%! 

The worst part about it is my kids are no geniuses, (sorry kids) and they need my help. I am often stressing to my kids that "mother knows best" or that "I already completed school" so when I sit down to help them and don't know the answers myself I look really dumb. Come on! You're killing my credibility here. Here are some examples. My son is in ninth grade, these are passages from Romeo and Juliet that he had to translate. 

Where be these enemies? Capulet! Montague!

See, what a scourge is laid upon your hate,

That heaven finds means to kill your joys with love!

And I, for winking at your discords too,

Have lost a brace of kinsmen: all are punish'd.

For naught so vile that on the earth doth live

But to the earth some special good doth give;

Nor aught so good but, strain'd from that fair use,

Revolts from true birth, stumbling on the abuse:

Virtue itself turns vice, being misapplied;

And vice sometimes by action dignified

Here's my first problem with that. Why is that necessary? Sure if you are going into a field where literature is important. But, for the layman what is the point? No one talks like that and I'm sure they never will again. So why waste valuable hours of education on this? I have polled many teenagers they 100% hate it and even after they spend weeks working on it still don't get the importance of it. Why can't Shakespeare evolve?  If the story is so important why not have one person update it and then the kids study that? Uggh. And before any literary lovers come at me let me stress that I LOVE reading, read to my kids lots, and read myself often, but come on!

Now seriously wouldn't the children's time be better served learning real life stuff? Like how to balance an account? Home ownership? How to cook on a budget? Or do home repairs? How to interview well? Or how to speak properly to adults instead of the  "ummhmmm" most of us get from our teens? What about networking lessons and technology? I mean seriously even Math seems like a waste since there are  machines that do math for us and don't forget they are a requirement in High School. Why do I have to pay $100 or more dollars for a calculator if my son has to do it without one? Don't we just need to know the basics here?

Now onto vocabulary, I love words but my fourth grader? Not so much. And this vocab list doesn't  help.




Does he really need those words right now? He knows them but can't make his bed properly, or stay organized or put pants in the drawer marked pants opposed to the underwear drawer. I am all for education but I really think it is outta control.

Our school board is proposing changing our  school hours for a couple reasons. One is to make bussing schedules run more smoothly. Another is to add more time to the school day. The elementary kids would have to stay til 4pm!

Middle til 3:15

High School til 3:15

I would agree to this if there was no homework but lets not forget these are kids and kids need time to just be kids. This school thing is outta control. I'm gonna put a post together about all my complaints with our local school system soon but this one couldn't wait.

Am I being unreasonable here? Anyone else having this issue? 


  1. WOW this is a first.
    We aren't on the same page.

  2. I have to agree with 2 hours of homework being too much! Throw in an extra curricular after school and you end up with exhausted kiddos!

  3. I don't think I've ever gone to bed at 8 o'clock ever.

  4. Nope..In fact, I have a similar situation. I explain to the kids why all this homework. Homework is the exercise of one's mind. If they can tackle this now, then the paperwork they are going to face in their jobs will be ten times easier.

    Why Shakespeare? Look at Shakespeare and look at a legal documents. If you can read Shakespeare, you can read anything....

    Just my 2 cents....

  5. OH. MY. WORD. I am with you 100%. Beyond that even.

    My son is in KINDERGARTEN. KINDER. GARTEN. And he's bringing home the most RIDICULOUS homework ever. RI.DIC.U.LOUS. I'm so annoyed by it it drives me crazy. CRAZY. (making my point yet? HA!)

    We had to do his homework this morning b/c (heaven forbid), they were terrors last night and I was in too much pain to deal with them so I put them to bed at 6:30 (have never ever done that before mind you). So, I had to rush him through it this morning b/c it has to be done every night... and he is already in school for 6 hours a day. ARE YOU EFFING KIDDING ME!?

    I'm beyond frustrated with our school system, BUT: homeschooling is not a healthy option for us, it would do more harm than good, And, we are moving in the summer and I can't find a Montessori type school where we are going for beyond kindergarten.

    Oh, and I have a mtg w/ Teacher today b/c he has a hard time concentrating in class. AFter 6 hours of it. At the age of 6.

    My head is going to explode.

    Never mind the fact that I don't even know what any of those vocab words that you listen even mean!

  6. Now I'm all worked up when I'd planned to go to this conference with a level head! ARG!

  7. Hum, keeping my mouth shut since education is my business....
    One word of advice, get son the Cliff notes of Shakespheare or for any book that he is reading. The thing with this type book, is getting them to be able to read AND understand any type of writings. Sometimes, we all need some 'extra' help with this, hence Cliff notes.
    If you feel that your younger ones have too much homework, go talk to their teachers. Many will agree with you that they need time to be play and such AND will tell you that after so much time to stop, and write a note to them about how long you worked before stopping.
    Remember, the best schools AND students are those that have great communication between parents and teachers.
    So much for keeping my mouth shut........

  8. They've gone the opposite direction here. Not only do the kids never seem to have much homework, they aren't even allowed to bring their books home with them.

  9. Peg- I am appalled. :) You could possibly feel differently if you had some kids to do all this HW with. Although we disagree, I still luv ya!

    MM- Yes, my point exactly. To be honest it is not always two hours but when they are tired and frustrated it can easily turn that way.

    Mike- I can see that

    Joker- What a great point. Never thought about it that way. Maybe we could replace Shakespeare with actual legal documents.

    Mama4Real- OMG You crack me up. You obviously agree with me. Too bad we don't share the school district because with our combined aggravation I'm sure we could change some things. I hope your meeting went okay.

    Mammahasspoken- I thought of you when writing this and hoped you would not take it personally being a teacher and all. I'm glad you did not. You are right my elementary teacher has offered us the opportunity to quit after an hour but I can't help but feel like a slacker parent when we do that. Cliff notes?? Just another purchase to make. Uggh. Thanks for not keeping your mouth shut. I wanted a teachers opinion. Just so you know, I do love and respect our teachers....most anyway.

    Jay- No how in the hell did you know that? You are not scoping out young girls on their way home from school are you?
    You raise a good point. That is another issue. Back in the day (lordy I sound old) We had the books to explain the work prior to having to do it so if parents did not understand it they could go back and review the lesson. Now no books, no lesson, all guess work.

  10. Cliff Notes are also available on line for free :o)
    Don't feel like a slacker when your child doesn't finish all their homework after a period of time. This actually tells the teacher something important. It could be that it took so much time because your child really didn't get it and the concept needs to be retaught. Many times we can 'work out a deal' with your child when it comes to homework if the problem is lack of motavation.

  11. I am late to the game. When I was in school I would translate Shakespeare all day long, but would rail against algebra.

    But the homework can be insane.