Practice makes perfect, or so they say. But when it comes to homework, research shows that hours of practice after school most often make for only stress and decreased interest in learning, writes Alfie Kohn in this Education week Commentary. Despite years of research demonstrating virtually no correlation between homework and achievement, the age-old belief that homework ought to help has prevailed, notes Kohn.
According to Kohn, by clinging to this notion that homework should help students, we are disregarding one of the most important factors in students’ success in school—their interest in learning. Redundant repetitions and increased time spent on material will not improve student understanding. Instead of focusing on the quantity of work, Kohn recommends we pay more attention to how students learn.
What do you think? Is homework counterproductive, or can it be an aid to learning?
A version of this news article first appeared in the TalkBack blog.