In truth, homework ranks quite low on a list of activities that consume children’s time at home.
They spend large chunks of time watching television (13 1/2 hours a week), playing (12 1/4 hours a week), performing personal care, or participating in sports (each 8 hours a week).
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A century or so ago, progressive reformers argued that it made kids unduly stressed, which later led in some cases to district-level bans on it for all grades under seventh.
This anti-homework sentiment faded, though, amid mid-century fears that the U. was falling behind the Soviet Union (which led to more homework), only to resurface in the 1960s and ’70s, when a more open culture came to see homework as stifling play and creativity (which led to less).
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America has long had a fickle relationship with homework.
There is no “royal road to learning;” but thanks to the work of anti-reform and anti-accountability interests, a perception that children are overburdened with homework is being created.
Unless it is countered with facts, public education will continue to become more expensive and time consuming.