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I am OUTRAGED!!! - Page 2

post #21 of 45
I'm not going to respond to the responses to my post because AnnMarie has already done so. I would love to homeschool, in theory, but I know full well that dd and I are not cut out for it. I know we would kill each other within a week. I really believe it is a personality thing, and niether of us has it. She NEEDS school for the socialization, 'cos she's not particularly outgoing.
post #22 of 45
Quote:
Many schools require grades 4+ to give 30 min per subject per night
Well, that's horrible. Even "educational experts" would say that a 4th grader should have no more than 40 minutes of homework an evening. And if a child really "hates" homework, obviously something is wrong with the work! Hating school is not something a kid just needs to deal with; a kid needs to be in a school (or other learning-type situation) that he likes.

Some private schools do not assign homework. All work gets finished in class. I see after-school time as belonging to the child and no one has a right to invade that time by telling him what to spend it on. My kids are too young for school (thank gOD-for-lack-of-a-better-term) but if we don't homeschool I will let their teachers know that I don't allow meaningless homework in my house. If it were something truly meaningful - such as a very interesting science project - instead of pages of "problems" then I may make an exception.

Homework for children is useless. It will have no effect on future academic or career development. I bumbled my way through elementary school, got expelled from middle school, dropped out of high school, and was still able to find exactly the kind of work I wanted! Now I'm at the university (yep, another school, but it was my choice!) and doing very well academically. So it's not true that your school crap follows you around everywhere. I also never took the SATs.

I think that's one reason so many kids are obese - where is the time after school to exercise? After 3 or 4 hours of stupid story problems I sure don't want to run around the block. I remember when after school was the time to climb trees and play in mud; now kids have to "work" so they can "get by in the real world." Yeah well in the real world I never had to take work home with me!

If you have ever used the services of a doctor, lawyer, bank-guy or other "professional" you most likely dealt with someone who did not pack home hours of homework a night in grade school. One child psychiatrist says that even in college, he never received more homework than could be folded up and stuffed in a pocket. Backpacks were not used. Now kids carry backpacks that are literally damaging their spines from all the books they have to carry home with them. Rather than not assigning so much work, teachers suggest that all backpacks have wheels.
: Doctors suggest that a backpack should be no more than 15% of a kid's body weight. (But then they never had HOMEWORK IN GRADE SCHOOL, SO WHAT DO THEY KNOW?)

I would think something was wrong with a kid who didn't daydream and mess around when working on boring homework.

Edited to add: Homework is also used as punishment. I'm sure some of us remember our teachers saying, "Since little Bobby didn't clean his desk, we will all have two extra pages of homework." This also promotes bullying; guess what happens to little Bobby after school?
post #23 of 45
When my ds1 was in PS he had tons of homework. More homework in the 3rd grade then my PS teacher brother gave to his 11th and 12th grade students. The teachers disguised it as "family time". But really it was me yelling at him to do stuff while fighting off the younger kids. It was a nightmare. Now that we homeschool (and have for several years) it takes us the same amount of time to do our schoolwork for the day as it did for him to do his homework. I think that's sad. I'm against homework. Not PS, just homework.
post #24 of 45
Quote:
Originally posted by Greaseball
[B]My kids are too young for school (thank gOD-for-lack-of-a-better-term) but if we don't homeschool I will let their teachers know that I don't allow meaningless homework in my house. If it were something truly meaningful - such as a very interesting science project - instead of pages of "problems" then I may make an exception.
I do agree with you on homework, but your child could fail if you did that. Schools will not make exceptions for you because then they would have to do it for everyone. They could call social services and get you into trouble there as well. IMO it would be better if you pushed the issue with the school board and tried to make it so there was little or no homework. I don't see that happening though. If you really won't allow homework in your home then you are safer if you just homeschool.

If private schools can function without homework I don't see why PS can't. When my kids went to private school last year there was almost never any homework. If their teacher could finish up everything I don't see why a PS teacher can't. Their teacher taught grades K-8 in the same classroom!

Yup, homework sucks!
post #25 of 45
Quote:
I do agree with you on homework, but your child could fail if you did that. Schools will not make exceptions for you because then they would have to do it for everyone. They could call social services and get you into trouble there as well.
They can't turn me in to social services, because school and homework are not legal requirements. Education is required, but not school. As for no exceptions, I think what I can do is say the no-homework rule is part of our religion. They have to accept all sorts of things based on religion, and they aren't allowed to ask what religion it is, or for proof that you actually practice a religion.

But it might not work, which is why I think I'd be wasting my time with ps.
post #26 of 45
kids in US public schools do not spend six hours a day on academics
you can do all the 'academics' equal to a half day KNGDN in three 30 minutes sessions a week

and greaseball - it is called educational neglect ((HUG)) I understand totally where you are coming from on this and would encourage you not to never ever enroll your child in public school
because you will be reported to social services eventually when your child is retained--

if your child does not do homework they will fail and most teachers have point prgrams, my older ds will tell you of pizza partys he missed out on and fun class days he spent sitting in the resource room on detention with the other kids that did not have their homework done on time

one of the last schools I taught at full time was very very poor and many parents did not have the pencils and paper to help their child do homework or the lighting or they were illiterate themselves
volunteers from the salvation army door of hope came in to tutor

the school had an afterschool program that was basically mandatory for those children where they would stay after with the staff to complete homework & they were fed at that time also

if the child could not stay because of bus ride home then they were brought to school on the early bus and got free breakfast and did their homework with the principal

this thread should be moved to the ps board so OP this child can get some advice to help her nephew instead of posters just pointlessly bashing homework in ps
post #27 of 45
Quote:
Originally posted by Greaseball
They can't turn me in to social services, because school and homework are not legal requirements.
They can. Wheather or not SS does anything about it is up to them. If a parent knows a child isn't doing well in school and the school has tried to work with the parent and the parent refuses to help the child - and you know they are going to look at it that way - they can turn you in for neglect.


Quote:
Education is required, but not school.
It's required unless you follow the proper rules to homeschool.


Quote:
As for no exceptions, I think what I can do is say the no-homework rule is part of our religion. They have to accept all sorts of things based on religion, and they aren't allowed to ask what religion it is, or for proof that you actually practice a religion.
You can try it, but it's not going to work. It's not that simple to get your way with public schools.

Quote:
But it might not work, which is why I think I'd be wasting my time with ps.
It won't work. If you want everything your way then don't use PS.
post #28 of 45
If the religious excuse can keep unvaxed kids in ps, and keep kids out of certain classes, why can't it keep them away from homework?
post #29 of 45
Well...good try, Greaseball, but the religious exemption excuse is not going to fly with regard to homework. I was absolutely shocked at my short experience with having a child in public school (a small (130 kids) single school school district public school with lots of artsy creative parents who are fully involved, etc.). The administration/government basically own your child once you sign them up. Here's one example: We were threatened (not me personally, but all families at the school) with being reported to Child Protective Services if a child was *late* more than 4 times a semester.

To get back to the topic. I think the original poster posted on the homeschooling board in order to get feedback from other homeschoolers rather than from parents with kids in ps, but that's just my feeling about it. Different points of view, and all that.

As someone who currently has one child homeschooling, and one child in private school, I can say this: Nothing hinders family closeness in my experience as much as homework does. And, in our very academic private school, we only have 1 hour of homework 3 nights a week. 4th graders at our school have about 1 - 1/12 hours of homework a night. Kids from this school go on to the top colleges, blah, blah, blah.

Three hours of homework per night is about what I put in in graduate school - not college - graduate school. So, if this is the case, I would gently try to talk to this child's mother and feel out exactly what is happening. If it is the case that the child is "goofing off" (a concept I don't really believe in) rather than getting his work done, then I would definitely encourage his parents to talk to the teacher about it. I have a friend who was going through the same thing with her son - and they were able to have his homework reduced by half. Her son became less overwhelmed, and is now easily able to finish his homework.

Though I think public school sucks, and homework definitely sucks, in our current "No Child Left Behind" educational environment, teachers are forced to require a lot more work from children than was true in the past. I think if the teacher knew what was happening, he/she would try to help remedy the situation.

Good Luck!

Laura
post #30 of 45
my dd is in the first grade and she gets one math sheet a day and brings home 1 or 2 reading books home a day, all that takes about 30 minutes to do. i for one like the homework, I get to see what she is learning in math, what she is struggling with and what I need to talk to the teacher about. It has also been beneficial for me to see what kind of learning stlye she has and I can discuss this with her teacher. When she was having trouble with reading I knew exactly what the teacher was talking about, because I had noticed it myself while we were doing her reading exercisies. For me her homework is a daily review for both of us. JMO
post #31 of 45
Quote:
Originally posted by Greaseball
If the religious excuse can keep unvaxed kids in ps, and keep kids out of certain classes, why can't it keep them away from homework?
For one, it's not an excuse, people actually have religious reasons for not vaccinating. Two, if you were a teacher would you buy that as a reason? Think about it from their point of view. Not only would it make their life harder, but it would your child's as well. None of the other kids would like it that they had to do homework but your kids don't. It wouldn't work.
post #32 of 45
Quote:
Originally posted by Openskyheart
Here's one example: We were threatened (not me personally, but all families at the school) with being reported to Child Protective Services if a child was *late* more than 4 times a semester.
Yup. I got a note like that this year for my son that's in K. It said they would take all the necessary steps to ensure he came to school, blah blah blah. He's in K and it's not even required. I was a bit when I got that letter to say the least.

The school can make your life a living hell. If you're not going to allow homework then you should just keep them home. It'll be easier on all of you.
post #33 of 45
I am moving this to Learning at School since it is about a ps child with homework issues. Maybe someone in that forum can give you some concrete advice on how your sister can approach the teacher/system.
post #34 of 45
Whew! Well, welcome to this board. Thanks Laralou!

After reading all the debate about HS vs. PS, it seems like the child is still in PS for now. He does have some issues, and maybe they are contributing to his homework difficulties. If you sister is interested, she could approach the teacher to find out more about the amt. of homework. If the child does have a diagnosis of some kind (depression or some other emotional disturbance) he would probably qualify for "accommodations" which might reduce his workload after school. If parents don't ask or push, usually the school assumes everything is o.k. and the child is functioning fine. To get on accommodations, there would need to be a note or letter from the doctor and your sister would ask for a 504 plan. This could help provide any accommodations that your nephew needs to make his school experience more successful, short of an IEP (special ed).

Hope this is helpful. I'm sure others will have more to contribute if they can make it through this thread!!!
post #35 of 45
Article on Homework Burdens

I agree with Lauren a 504 and IEP needs to be in place for this child. Mental illness is a legitamate reason to reduce homework.

Teachers are being forced to by educrats/bureaucrats to assign homework. The schools policies on assigning homework not what the teacher see as a child/ren’s need.

I also think if a child is goofing off in class and does not complete schoolwork finishing it at home is acceptable. BUT I disagree assigning much if any other homework than that except on an as need bases. I do think the parents need to get the teacher more involved and figuring out how long it should take and why it is taking him so long (if more than expected).

I homeschool, It on average including lunch and other breaks takes about 5 hrs to do my 9 and 5 yr old’s lessons. I will admit my nine year old has made his day very long because he just did not want to do. He has now learned do it right the first time and you are done and free, but we have had days. I am sure these days will happen with my other children. I think all children go through phases and days of “I DON’T want to.” Some times they you just have to, like they have to brush their teeth.

Please don’t think I am an ogre. I do take time to look at what and why the day is going the way it is. I have put up the books and changed lessons but when he needs to work on fine motor skills and refuse to do any and all activities (including simple crossing monkey bars) you have to put the preverbal foot down.

My son went to kindergarten and one month of first grade. He had no homework in kindergarten, except twice which was make a craft for a special thing going on in school. In first grade he had spelling and this packet (one worksheet a night) for homework. Our special ed teacher for my hard of hearing child was apualled. Her same age child in the neighboring school district didn’t even have spelling words yet. These schools had the same ratings. She was very understanding why my son hated it and did not disagree with me pulling him out. She did/does have the socialization fears but she was blunt that not enough socialization was far better than him hating to learn. LOL
post #36 of 45
Not all homework in our house is "meaningless" work. What looks like busy work to me is often interesting to my kids. If they do their homework, I'm not going to flip through it and tell them off for wasting their time. On the other hand, if my 9 yo dd gets half way through something and stops, she could be discouraged because the work is too hard or because it is too easy and she already knows how to do the thing the lesson is teaching her. If she asks for help, I'll give it to her, but if she doesn't want help, she's not forced to do the work. If not completing homework backfires on her and her marks are poor, then another lesson is learned, too.

I would never encourage a child to do homework just to get more marks, but I'd never discourage a child from doing homework just because I thought she'd be better off doing something else. They are both actions of authoritarian adults acting like they know better than kids what to do. Some kids want to get good marks, and if they want to do homework then let them, I say.
post #37 of 45
Quote:
I'd never discourage a child from doing homework just because I thought she'd be better off doing something else.
That's a good point...if my kids want to go to ps and do lots of homework, I'd wonder where I went wrong, but I'd have to let them do it! I think kids need to choose the kind of education they receive.

What I'd like to do, when they are old enough, is take them to tour every public and private school in town and have them choose one.
post #38 of 45
I will admit first off we homeschool. But I thought I would share my away from homeschooling experience.

When dd started Kindergarten we were told that she would be bringing home 30 minutes of homework everyday. Nothing for weekends or holidays. As she progressed thru school they would be adding 30 minutes of home work per night per grade (ie 1st grade 1 hour, 2nd grade 1 hour 30 minutes) and they would also have "projects" that would need to be completed on top of that. (science, history usually taking another 20-30 minutes per night), AND anything they didn't complete during school time. This was a maganet school, with the focus on the "3 R's". During K. we had her tested for a gifted program, which she was accepted into and we switched schools for 1st grade. Being that it was in the same school dist. it had simular homework rules... but the kids could stay in from recess and do the homework so they would have nothing to take home. In her first grade class she had 15 minute am recess, and then 45 minute lunch/pm recess.
When she went to 2nd grade they had taken away the am recess, and also could not afford a PE teacher so the kids had no PE. They cut the art and music programs and made them only for 4th and 5th graders. Her 2nd grade teacher told me that alot of the "fun" stuff was not going to happen much anymore due to the fact that the school wanted to get better marks on the standardized tests. That would be starting with the 3rd graders, and she had to perpare the 2nd graders for this test.

It could be that the OP's nephew was "goofing off" but it could be normal procedure for him to be bringing home that much homework. My dd had a mathphobia and at least twice a week would bring home extra math to do on top of her normal homework. If he is having problems in a subject he could be having to do that ontop of regularly assisinged homework. The "no child left behind" act has really messed up public schools. They are so focused on the testing, and not on the learning. Learning is fun! I think it is a same that little kids are already "hating" school, or only liking lunch. It is almost like they have nothing that intests them. And I know not every subject is wow amazing to every child, but I remember teachers having the room to make it fun and exciting, now it has to be "THIS WAY" or they get the boot. It can burn out the teachers, and it burns out the kids way to early.

OP also said her Nephew was on AD... and this just started since Novemeber... weird. I mean I can see that with his parents not together, he would have some issues to deal with, but then to add on top of that mounds of homework, whether by his desing (ie "goofing off" and daydreaming) or by the schools with maditory homework. Maybe what he needs is some understanding, if he is depressed and dealing with home issues, it very well could be hard for him to focus at school, maybe he is daydreaming of a life with both his folks, or what is going to happen to him and his mom, or whatever 4th graders daydream about. Not a sin in my book, and not a reason to spend 3 hours every evening doing homework. If he is just dragging it out, maybe that is how he gets him mom to spend sometime with him. I am sure the seperation hasn't been easy on her, and she maybe working more, and he may have more responsiblities, and maybe he just wants her with him, even if it is her harping on him to hurry up. I mean sometimes we look at kids as mini adults and they just need to "deal" with what ever life dishes out, but 9 year olds just don't really have it in them yet.

OK just my 10 cents.

H
post #39 of 45
The child's mother should start out talking to the teacher and perhaps to the administration, to find out what is really going on. Most of this thread is really idle speculation in a lot of ways (my post included!).

If the child is really getting that much homework per night, she might want to work with the teacher and the administration to see if that is what they intend or if something strange is going on.

It is very possible as others have pointed out that they child is just goofing around. We use PS, and sometimes my dd takes far longer to do her homework than she should because she doesn't just sit down and do it. We are working on using this experience to teach her the benefit of applying herself to a task and finishing it, and I think she is starting to see the light. It carries over to other tasks far beyond homework.

The child may also have very poor study or organizational skills--some do. There are techniques that your SIL might read up on, or that the teacher might recommend that could help your nephew get organized and pare down the amount of time he spends.

My dh is a high school teacher. He has students who never turn in the required homework. It is nearly always the case that these same students have at least one study hall a day, and when he checks with the study hall teacher, these same students never make any attempt to do any schoolwork during these periods. He tries to work with the students and the parents to help them learn to use their time more effectively and solve a few problems at once.
post #40 of 45
Some great conversation in here! We have no kids yet, but have been doing "research" for the past several years - just to prepare & satisfy some babylusting hormones without actually HAVING a baby yet Just thought I'd explain first why I'm here when we don't have kids...

My younger sis has a six yr old, in first grade, who is beginning to bring home at least an hour of homework & a few hours on the weekends. My sis is a single mom who served in the Air Guard for most of her after-highschool life but is now back in college, bio-sciences. She now has her job, her mothering, her own homework & also her daughter's homework to handle in the short 24 hour days. Bless her is all I can say... & any other single mama's dealing with similar circ's. I honestly don't know HOW she manages, she doesn't have the homeschooling option. Anyway, just wanted to drop in & agree that kid's homework amounts are a little much these days. & not every kids can just sit down, focus on the work & get it done in time to play outdoors... some have learning disabilities or artistic personalities & just don't operate in the cut&dried homework regimine very easily or beneficially. Therefore, they get punished for taking too long or worse, held back in school due to poor grades. Which gives in to poor self esteem, a subconscious disdain for school & larger problems down the road.

Anyway, it's very sad to me & it would be awesome to have public schools that carry mostly homeschooling ideals. (Do they exist & I just am unaware?) Seems like a huge problem to not have more/better alternatives to pub schools. One thing from these great posts that stuck out was the idea that if we keep kids busy they'll get into trouble less... makes sense given how the rest of this government operates. The ol' "STOP FREE-THINKING WHILE WE STILL CAN!" attitude. which is all fear-based anyway...

it seems that if they'd stop cutting art & music programs from pub school curriculums & offered more FREE afterschool programs for public schooled kids, they'd still be off thew streets & also be gaining the benefit of creativity.

just my two cents... & best of luck to all of you mama's & papa's & your kids who deal with the huge HW loads
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