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(NPR)   France's president says homework "penalizes students with difficult home lives." So clearly, the solution is to help improve the home life. Wait, no, it's getting rid of homework entirely   (npr.org ) divider line
    More: Fail, social democracies, Bryant Gumbel  
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3801 clicks; posted to Main » on 02 Dec 2012 at 12:18 PM (4 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



227 Comments     (+0 »)
 
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2012-12-02 11:24:45 AM  
This is not necessarily a FAIL. This is not a new concept. It just hasn't been tried much (if at all) since the beginning of the Cold War.
 
vpb [TotalFark]
2012-12-02 11:29:40 AM  
"The French are discovering - to their horror - that their performance internationally has been declining over the last 10 years. The French actually are performing [worse] than the Americans in reading and science," he says.

Then they had better try something and fast.
 
2012-12-02 11:40:33 AM  
Assigned homework is bullshiat.
If they can't fit all of the learnin they need into an 8 hour day then they're not doing it right.
 
2012-12-02 11:40:49 AM  
If the teacher can't finish the job in school, then the school day needs to be extended. Take-home homework is mostly to punish the parents. I can see it for math and reading and possibly writing. All the rest of it is complete horseshiat.
 
2012-12-02 11:50:58 AM  
Parents in good homes will give their children interesting and educational things to do with their time, and the cycle of inequality will continue.

Maybe we can hire people to disrupt those with easy home lives.
 
2012-12-02 11:52:15 AM  

Snarfangel: Parents in good homes will give their children interesting and educational things to do with their time


The rest will be spent on homework.
 
2012-12-02 12:21:55 PM  
It's 5:30 p.m. and getting dark outside, as kids pour out of Gutenberg Elementary School in Paris 15th arrondissement.

5:30pm let-out time? Whew things have changed.
 
2012-12-02 12:23:01 PM  
When I was real little and my brother had homework, I was jealous of the attention he got when he would spaz out over it. But when I finally had homework I thought it sucked. Forty years later I still think it sucks.
 
2012-12-02 12:25:11 PM  
The problem is not assigning homework, it is grading it. If you cannot determine the appropriate grade based on in class performance (outside projects/term papers) then you are doing it wrong. So assign all the homework you want, and the student should do as much as they want, but grading it is for losers.
 
2012-12-02 12:25:28 PM  
Actually, trying to fix the circle of poverty and bad home life is much harder for the government to do. Government and schools alone cannot fix the bad thinking patterns that trap people in a cycle of shiat jobs and poor decisions.
 
2012-12-02 12:25:44 PM  
We need to return to actually teaching critical thinking and imparting knowledge rather than rote memorization to pass standardized tests.
 
2012-12-02 12:25:45 PM  
A 20 year old mother with a 7 year old son.

Urgh.
 
2012-12-02 12:25:45 PM  
Will intelligence only be judged on repetition and memorization? Will we still force everyone to learn at the same speed even though we learn at different ones? Are people that are supposed to be learning trades left to die and join gangs like they always do?
 
2012-12-02 12:26:59 PM  

Eddie Adams from Torrance: Assigned homework is bullshiat.
If they can't fit all of the learnin they need into an 8 hour day then they're not doing it right.


I've always felt that homework was to force kids to spend time outside of class doing what they should've done inside. If you do math outside of class you may have NOBODY to ask for help with and most math books are written from the perspective of someone writing a math book rather than someone wanting to learn math. I get that you need practice to reinforce math but math isn't something you can go ask grandma about. History paper? Damn right Grandma is a 1st hand source of information.

I've had professors who use shiatty books to try to reinforce what they teach in class. What they teach in class may amount to 75% of what is in the book and they never test or even talk about that last 25% but damn if you don't need to read everything and pray you learned enough to pass a test (Hint: I didn't because this method sucks). Then on top of it all the book is written in a perspective of being a seasoned engineer and fark you if you don't understand what it says.

Then there is the whole writing paper thing that never made sense to me. Most people don't spend their lives writing proposals, dissertations, so I've never understood why high school kids have to write essays comparing/contrasting two books with their teacher offering vague feedback that doesn't really direct how to improve your thought processes to write a better paper later.
 
2012-12-02 12:27:13 PM  

BumpInTheNight: It's 5:30 p.m. and getting dark outside, as kids pour out of Gutenberg Elementary School in Paris 15th arrondissement.

5:30pm let-out time? Whew things have changed.


Hmm... I thought he was exaggerating, but if their school day is that long then throwing extra homework on top of that is kinda messed up. I wonder if they have study hall?
 
2012-12-02 12:28:13 PM  
Well, it does.
 
2012-12-02 12:28:25 PM  

Ed Willy: Actually, trying to fix the circle of poverty and bad home life is much harder for the government to do. Government and schools alone cannot fix the bad thinking patterns that trap people in a cycle of shiat jobs and poor decisions.


What, you think schools don't have any affect on thinking patterns?
 
2012-12-02 12:28:27 PM  

nmemkha: We need to return to actually teaching critical thinking and imparting knowledge rather than rote memorization to pass standardized tests.


You want Americans to be able to THINK?
That's just crazy talk.
 
2012-12-02 12:32:17 PM  

Arkanaut: BumpInTheNight: It's 5:30 p.m. and getting dark outside, as kids pour out of Gutenberg Elementary School in Paris 15th arrondissement.

5:30pm let-out time? Whew things have changed.

Hmm... I thought he was exaggerating, but if their school day is that long then throwing extra homework on top of that is kinda messed up. I wonder if they have study hall?


Yah seriously eh? I figure homework is to let the students practice what the teacher taught them over what (I remember) being a 6 hour day. 8 hours a day is plenty time to devote their life to a particular goal. This feels out of whack with the traditional french culture towards work/life balance but I'm too lazy to google it :P
 
2012-12-02 12:33:33 PM  
How 'bout this: more serious assignments that actually engage students (papers and the like), less make work assignments. You're in the classroom for what, 30, 40 hours a week? Which is what, three times what you spend in college?

Yeah, additional take home work after that is a crock. Stop using homework as a crutch for your shiatty teaching, it just punishes kids and generally adds very little to their understanding. Kids need practice sets in math? Have them do them in class once a week. With you, the teacher, there to help them out right when they need you, as every study ever done on the matter says is much more effective than having them struggle on their own at home. Need them to dedicate significant time to writing a 5 page paper? Okay, have them put together an outline in class, but you can send that one home. But there's no justification for the routine time suck that a lot of homework has become.
 
2012-12-02 12:33:52 PM  

links136: Will intelligence only be judged on repetition and memorization? Will we still force everyone to learn at the same speed even though we learn at different ones? Are people that are supposed to be learning trades left to die and join gangs like they always do?


We can only hope. If those kid learn construction trades what are all the immigrants going to do for work?

Why do you hate brown people?
 
2012-12-02 12:34:14 PM  
Who does homework at home anyway? That stuff is for home room... Or my 2nd period assignments would be done during 1st period's lecture, 3rd period's work done in second, and so on.

/straight As first five periods
//failed last period
 
2012-12-02 12:36:56 PM  

Abox: When I was real little and my brother had homework, I was jealous of the attention he got when he would spaz out over it. But when I finally had homework I thought it sucked. Forty years later I still think it sucks.


Maybe you should finally finish it so you can finally graduate?
 
2012-12-02 12:37:08 PM  
This is true. My mom smoked up the house and there weren't enough desks for the kids in it. My narcissistic-narcissistic mom and manic-depressive dad were always raving in it. Anyway, physiologically, even most adults are only capable of five hours of concentration a day, tops.
 
2012-12-02 12:37:09 PM  

links136: Ed Willy: Actually, trying to fix the circle of poverty and bad home life is much harder for the government to do. Government and schools alone cannot fix the bad thinking patterns that trap people in a cycle of shiat jobs and poor decisions.

What, you think schools don't have any affect on thinking patterns?


Math class word problems should consist of: Jenny has a kid at 16 that costs $5000 in hospital bills. She has to pay $50 a day to feed and cloth the child. Her baby daddy makes $5.50 at McDonalds and works 30 hours a week. How much does their life suck? What if they had waited 10 years?
 
2012-12-02 12:38:13 PM  
Homework is a failed throwback from the 1800s. Get rid of it already.
 
2012-12-02 12:39:11 PM  
Keep in mind that some districts mandate homework. My district requires a minimum of 3 homework assignments per week per class. As the teacher I wouldn't choose to do that if I had any say in the matter.
 
2012-12-02 12:40:18 PM  

RandomExcess: The problem is not assigning homework, it is grading it. If you cannot determine the appropriate grade based on in class performance (outside projects/term papers) then you are doing it wrong. So assign all the homework you want, and the student should do as much as they want, but grading it is for losers.


I would think that in most cases, the teacher knows what grade a student gets regardless of homework. Students at that age need to see immediate consequences of their work. They can do that if they see an A or an F on the top of a page. College kids know that they need to study to succeed, but elementary school children are incapable of that kind of long term thinking, so you need to give them that checkpoint.

For some kids, homework is probably unnecessary, but will vary student to student, and likely subject to subject. A kid may need that additional exercise in math, but be totally fine in history. Unfortunately, with 30+ kids in a class, that individualized approach would be impossible.
 
2012-12-02 12:41:18 PM  
homework was useless. i never "learned" anything while doing homework. the real use for homework was reading textbooks or lit books, since they never gave you time in school to actually read them in their entirety. of course to make sure you read your textbook, you would have to answer questions on a quiz, or write a paper. by high school my idea of homework was finding someone who i could copy the answers from during homeroom. and thankfully by college most professors stopped that bull shiat and only gave reading assignments, which were cool by me.
 
2012-12-02 12:41:34 PM  
Subby, you want the French Government to legislate morality to its citizens? Have you even TALKED to a Frenchman?
 
2012-12-02 12:43:23 PM  

APE992: Then there is the whole writing paper thing that never made sense to me. Most people don't spend their lives writing proposals, dissertations, so I've never understood why high school kids have to write essays comparing/contrasting two books with their teacher offering vague feedback that doesn't really direct how to improve your thought processes to write a better paper later.


A hell of a lot of people spend a lot of time and effort writing stuff like grant proposals. Scientists do, anybody in the nonprofit world begging for money does, people in any sort of business looking to get a project started need to be able to argue their case. And even if you don't write often, being able to coherently express yourself in the English language is an incredibly valuable, and, among certain technical classes, vanishingly rare skill.

And writing papers forces you to build an argument, and learn how to use evidence to support that argument. The feedback isn't the point so much as the practice is. The subject matter is really quite irrelevant, it's the process of writing and argumentation that's important. We use literature to teach those skills because literature offers interesting insights into our culture and society, which are damn good things to understand. It's also supposed to be interesting to read. We also teach those skills in history and civics class, and a good science teacher should assign some writing on occasion as well.
 
2012-12-02 12:43:57 PM  
My issue isn't necessarily with homework as a whole. It's when kids move on from elementary school and start having multiple teachers, all of which assign projects and assignments at the same time. I finished high school in 2005, and in all seriousness, it was worse than university in regards to the work load.

Maybe they should just limit teachers to the amount of homework they can hand out per year. An 8-hour school day can quickly turn into a 12-hour one -- now imagine that every weekday. It takes its toll on people.

It's not like they're getting paid to go to school...
 
2012-12-02 12:45:00 PM  

nmemkha: We need to return to actually teaching critical thinking and imparting knowledge rather than rote memorization to pass standardized tests.

 
2012-12-02 12:45:03 PM  
France is going down the crapper with their bullshiat socialist government. They are even threatening Arcelor-Mittal with stealing their french assets from them if they fire french workers from their foundries in france. What a bunch of idiots.
 
2012-12-02 12:46:12 PM  

cryinoutloud: Well, it does.


The thing is, without homework their lives will still be as miserable as before. Hence, they solve nothing.
 
2012-12-02 12:47:55 PM  

vermicious k'nid: Homework is a failed throwback from the 1800s. Get rid of it already.


Exactly, just like the concept of hard work paying back those who invest in it, and that those who make an effort are better rewarded than those who slack around.
 
2012-12-02 12:50:51 PM  
Some topics/skills require sitting down and reading or practicing for long periods of time.

That isn't going to stop any time soon.
 
2012-12-02 12:53:31 PM  
Wow, amazed that the attitude is anti-homework here. If I didn't have homework in school, I would have been absolutely worthless in college. Homework is a great character builder and teaches kids that life can suck sometimes.
 
2012-12-02 12:55:12 PM  

cptjeff: Kids need practice sets in math? Have them do them in class once a week.


You can not properly teach math with one practice set per week. No way. They would be struggling to maintain what they were already taught.

cptjeff: But there's no justification for the routine time suck that a lot of homework has become.


Sure there is. The school district can't afford the 1:1 attention each kid needs, so they send Junior home with homework and recruit the parent's help. This is part of the reason why kids with educated parents and a stable household do better in school. They can't shorten the school day in light of this either, because working class people are basically depending on public school for daycare purposes.
 
2012-12-02 12:55:22 PM  
Typical socialist - everyone has to be the same. And because the only relevant exception is in the direction of smart, we all have to be dumb.
 
2012-12-02 12:56:56 PM  
More and more it seem school is just day-care and the homework is meant to be the learning?

I've known medical students, veterinary students, and engineers who spend significantly less time in class than a 2nd grader. I'm not really sure what kids are doing in school all day, but I'm pretty sure it's not really learning in the traditional sense.

At most universities a 'full-time' student is one who will have '15-credit hours' and that should translate, roughly, into 15 hours in class, each week. That's roughly *three hours* per day. And this is for serious university types.
 
2012-12-02 12:57:16 PM  
I had hours upon hours of homework throughout school. I was not very good at math, so I spent at least an hour or two a night on math alone. I think homework made me more diciplined and focused, but I can see how it would backfire for others. Homework prepared me for AP classes in highschool (which has nothing to do with how one does in colleges... So there's that).

/mixed feelings on this
//I need an adult
 
2012-12-02 12:57:23 PM  
Everyone is biatching about math homework, but reading assignments, essays, and other activities to be done on your own are really important teaching reinforcement tools. shiatty teachers working out of a book might assign homework, but other teachers use homework to reinforce what they've already done.

I'm an ESL teacher in China, and when I have the resources to assign homework (most colleges make you pay for photocopies) it's a really good way for me to assess individual students and help them reinforce what we're doing in class time, since the only time they'll use English is during their two-hour class periods with me.

of course, the biggest difference between Chinese students and Western students is that the Chinese memorize EVERYTHING. There isn't critical analysis because they're tested on rote knowledge, not critical skills. Homework is important because it takes what you use in-class and apply it outside of class to complete an assignment by yourself. some homework is shiatty but homework in general is a really useful tool.
 
2012-12-02 12:58:18 PM  

Erom: Wow, amazed that the attitude is anti-homework here. If I didn't have homework in school, I would have been absolutely worthless in college. Homework is a great character builder and teaches kids that life can suck sometimes.


Ah, character building. The traditional excuse given when you have no good reason, but want a kid to do something anyway.

I did find in college after blowing off a pretty fair amount of homework in school prior. I had simply learned early to distinguish between what was important for me to understand the material and bullshiat make work.
 
2012-12-02 01:04:36 PM  
For all of you farkers who think that homework is unnecessary and useless, I'd like you to go do something. Go find yourself a teacher that operates outside of a school environment - a sports coach, or a piano teacher or something. Now make your same argument to them, but replace "homework" with "practice".

And essays and disserations teach us to use critical thinking and be able to back up our statements and arguments using facts and the opinions of credible sources. Otherwise, we'll all end up like that "study it out" lady.
 
2012-12-02 01:05:56 PM  

cptjeff: Erom: Wow, amazed that the attitude is anti-homework here. If I didn't have homework in school, I would have been absolutely worthless in college. Homework is a great character builder and teaches kids that life can suck sometimes.

Ah, character building. The traditional excuse given when you have no good reason, but want a kid to do something anyway.

I did find in college after blowing off a pretty fair amount of homework in school prior. I had simply learned early to distinguish between what was important for me to understand the material and bullshiat make work.


Yeah, learning how to manage a deadline, prioritize work, and complete assigned tasks in adolescence is a complete waste of time. Not only that, but making students apply what they've learned in class to homework in order to reinforce lessons is stupid, kids automatically remember everything they learned when the bell sounds at 3:00.
 
2012-12-02 01:06:29 PM  

Erom: Wow, amazed that the attitude is anti-homework here. If I didn't have homework in school, I would have been absolutely worthless in college. Homework is a great character builder and teaches kids that life can suck sometimes.


I think that entirely depends on the character of the homework. I don't remember much from elementary school or junior high that I considered particularly helpful or useful. High school was a different ballgame, though my experience there might not be representative of most other high school students. I was in the IB program (roughly like AP) and having shiat-tons of homework there actually did help prepare me for University. Also helpful was that most of my teachers had masters degrees in their subject area, were competent, and didn't assign work that was inane and completely pointless.
 
2012-12-02 01:08:46 PM  
I have 3 kids in grades 3-6. Personally I wish they had more homework. Yes, it sucks for me to spend all day working & coming home to homework, but it gives me a chance to help them learn & think. Its waaay better than the kids sitting around watching tv or whatnot. Im sure it will change soon, once they get older, but you cant learn everything in class. Too many distractions & zero 1-on-1 time if youre struggling in anything.
 
2012-12-02 01:10:08 PM  
Hero tag? Homework is a concept mostly practiced in America. Of course our record of generating 100% super geniuses dictates we should keep doing it, amirite?

Homework was graded in high school but I blew it off. Still passed. I didn't learn much there but still went to college based on ACT scores. Had plenty of homework in college (not graded) and graduated. College homework seemed to matter; it related to learning. Not so with high school or grade school busy work in my experience.

Kids don't like doing it. Teachers hate grading it. And it seems parents are doing most of it. Why don't we just shut down this national joke?
 
2012-12-02 01:10:19 PM  
I don't remember anything from homework I had to do. So I guess it didn't help me at all. We did have a few projects we had to do at home that were fun and I remember those.
 
2012-12-02 01:13:59 PM  
Isn't this along the lines of hobbling those who can run faster than others? In the sense that home environment is somewhat "hereditary" in that if the parents didn't learn good study habits, or didn't have a quite place to study when they were young, they aren't likely to provide these things for their children. So in effect this decree says homes with better study habits won't have an advantage over homes without.

They're bringing the higher level down instead of the lower level up. It's weak.

/college level education is also somewhat "hereditary". if your parents didn't go to college you are less likely to do so
 
2012-12-02 01:14:15 PM  

LiberalEastCoastElitist: You can not properly teach math with one practice set per week. No way. They would be struggling to maintain what they were already taught.


No, not really. I did about one practice set a week, even though being assigned a lot more, and still did well in the advanced level math classes. That's an excuse, and it's not true. Kids can learn math at a much, much faster rate than we let them- I had a professor once who was involved in a program that was teaching basic levels of calculus to kids in elementary school. When you're learning new skills, you're applying the old ones and still getting practice with them, without the utter drudgery and uselessness of taking three months to teach fractions.

LiberalEastCoastElitist: Sure there is. The school district can't afford the 1:1 attention each kid needs, so they send Junior home with homework and recruit the parent's help. This is part of the reason why kids with educated parents and a stable household do better in school. They can't shorten the school day in light of this either, because working class people are basically depending on public school for daycare purposes.


Yeah, and school should be a lot more than daycare. They're there, why not actually teach them rather than trying to make the actual learning happen at home? As Fark_Guy_Rob points out, the guy or girl who's training to operate on your brain spends significantly less time in class than an elementary schooler. They spend a tremendous amount of time in class, and that time can and should be used to work on problem sets and whatnot- with the expert in the room to work with a kid, or go over the occasional problem on the board. You don't need particularly small class sizes to do that effectively, you just need to alter the structure of how you teach the class. Set aside the chalk every now and then and have kids work through the problems while they can call on you when they're having problems, so that rather than struggling with it, not getting it, and having problems with that concept later, the problem is found quickly, easily corrected, and the kid learns the material much faster and much more strongly. You get what, 30 kids sitting at their desks working. The teacher walks around looking for frustrated faces. She then walks over to the kid and helps them out. If two or three have the same problem, go over it in the board.

That's been shown to be a tremendously effective method of teaching. But the mindset is that the teacher should be up there talking the whole time they're in the room, which is just entirely counterproductive.
 
2012-12-02 01:15:13 PM  

Rich Cream: didn't have a quite quiet place to study


/mediocre study habits
 
2012-12-02 01:16:57 PM  

APE992: I've had professors who use shiatty books to try to reinforce what they teach in class. What they teach in class may amount to 75% of what is in the book and they never test or even talk about that last 25% but damn if you don't need to read everything and pray you learned enough to pass a test (Hint: I didn't because this method sucks). Then on top of it all the book is written in a perspective of being a seasoned engineer and fark you if you don't understand what it says.


That's what office hours are for. Not only do you get the opportunity to get individual help, but if enough people show up wanting help it should get the idea across to the prof that what he's doing isn't getting through to a lot of the class. If he wants his office hours to be spent more productively than dealing with a long line of students, he'll have to change his methods.
 
2012-12-02 01:17:12 PM  
My favorite excuse from teachers giving homework: "It's a way for the less proficient kids to get a higher grade". Sure, graded homework will help some kids, but how come all of the smarter kids lost 10-15% of their grade because they had clubs and advanced classes, and no time for homework? I would have preferred a longer day with no homework with teachers to actually back up the work they give us than bullshiat work meant to raise the average of the class, while penalizing those who didn't have quite enough time to do it.

/I think the real reason for it is that some teachers are sadists, as some were visibly upset that a sub didn't give out homework on every useless thing they book-taught us.
//Im smarting most of the comments in the thread.
///Slashies come in threes
 
2012-12-02 01:17:36 PM  
i.imgur.com
We shall start an underground network immediately after we surrender our syllabi.
 
2012-12-02 01:17:46 PM  
Subby needs to think a bit more about this.

When I was in middle and high school in the 1990s, homework was pretty much busy work. Lots of repetitious problems. I doubt much has changed. The sheer amount of work that had to do done each night was also a bit overwhelming. I didn't get home from School until 4pm; if I was on an after school sports team it was more like 6 to 7pm. I then had to get up at 6:30am in the morning.

Starting sophomore of high school I begin doing most of my homework in groups during free periods. I got a lot more out of that than doing it alone at night because when I didn't understand something, I could discuss it with classmates. I would have never made in through Calculus BC and Physics AP if it wasn't for doing homework in groups. And that's more like how homework is done in undergrad and grad school -- you work in study groups.
 
2012-12-02 01:19:31 PM  

ApatheticMonkey: For all of you farkers who think that homework is unnecessary and useless, I'd like you to go do something. Go find yourself a teacher that operates outside of a school environment - a sports coach, or a piano teacher or something. Now make your same argument to them, but replace "homework" with "practice".

And essays and disserations teach us to use critical thinking and be able to back up our statements and arguments using facts and the opinions of credible sources. Otherwise, we'll all end up like that "study it out" lady.



While everything you said is true, there's a difference between practice and busywork, and not all teachers have the skill to distinguish between the two. Multiplication tables? Fine. Persuasive essay? Fine. Look up these 20 words in the dictionary and write down their definitions longhand? What? If you're trying to teach vocabulary,use the words in a sentence, and teach language roots and their word structure. (What does 'rectangle' 'rectify' and 'direction' have in common? If you're reeling especially lokisome, add 'erection' in there and leave them to titter.) This actually accomplishes its stated purpose, besides taking far less time, and is also more likely to lead to later success. This is what the French leaders were complaining about in TFA, when we rely on filling people's heads with rote memorization instead of teaching overall knowledge. After all, which option is more likely to allow you to use 'rectify' later in life? Learning the use of phonemes, allowing for outright wordsmithing, or strange buffoonery, such as memorizing a list of words for 24 hours which are forgotten in 72?
 
2012-12-02 01:20:57 PM  
Yes, let's laugh at a country with a better economy and a bigger GDP than ours for ideas that might actually work.
 
2012-12-02 01:21:05 PM  

cptjeff: APE992: Then there is the whole writing paper thing that never made sense to me. Most people don't spend their lives writing proposals, dissertations, so I've never understood why high school kids have to write essays comparing/contrasting two books with their teacher offering vague feedback that doesn't really direct how to improve your thought processes to write a better paper later.

A hell of a lot of people spend a lot of time and effort writing stuff like grant proposals. Scientists do, anybody in the nonprofit world begging for money does, people in any sort of business looking to get a project started need to be able to argue their case. And even if you don't write often, being able to coherently express yourself in the English language is an incredibly valuable, and, among certain technical classes, vanishingly rare skill.

And writing papers forces you to build an argument, and learn how to use evidence to support that argument. The feedback isn't the point so much as the practice is. The subject matter is really quite irrelevant, it's the process of writing and argumentation that's important. We use literature to teach those skills because literature offers interesting insights into our culture and society, which are damn good things to understand. It's also supposed to be interesting to read. We also teach those skills in history and civics class, and a good science teacher should assign some writing on occasion as well.


Very well said.

It's funny how the whiners in this thread say they want critical thinking, and then reject the idea that it be assigned.
 
2012-12-02 01:22:24 PM  
HEROtag.jpg
 
2012-12-02 01:22:31 PM  

Portia: Keep in mind that some districts mandate homework. My district requires a minimum of 3 homework assignments per week per class. As the teacher I wouldn't choose to do that if I had any say in the matter.


Good point. In the United States we're so fast to blame teachers and teacher unions when so many of the moronic policies in our schools are set by the people on the school board. Often to be on the school board you don't have to have any background/experience in education -- you just have a to win an election.
 
2012-12-02 01:31:26 PM  

optional: cptjeff: APE992: Then there is the whole writing paper thing that never made sense to me. Most people don't spend their lives writing proposals, dissertations, so I've never understood why high school kids have to write essays comparing/contrasting two books with their teacher offering vague feedback that doesn't really direct how to improve your thought processes to write a better paper later.

A hell of a lot of people spend a lot of time and effort writing stuff like grant proposals. Scientists do, anybody in the nonprofit world begging for money does, people in any sort of business looking to get a project started need to be able to argue their case. And even if you don't write often, being able to coherently express yourself in the English language is an incredibly valuable, and, among certain technical classes, vanishingly rare skill.

And writing papers forces you to build an argument, and learn how to use evidence to support that argument. The feedback isn't the point so much as the practice is. The subject matter is really quite irrelevant, it's the process of writing and argumentation that's important. We use literature to teach those skills because literature offers interesting insights into our culture and society, which are damn good things to understand. It's also supposed to be interesting to read. We also teach those skills in history and civics class, and a good science teacher should assign some writing on occasion as well.

Very well said.

It's funny how the whiners in this thread say they want critical thinking, and then reject the idea that it be assigned.


that would suggest most people even know how to communicate properly. Alot of people can't even read body language, and the ones that do call it "street sense".
 
2012-12-02 01:32:35 PM  

Kuroutesshin: cptjeff: Erom: Wow, amazed that the attitude is anti-homework here. If I didn't have homework in school, I would have been absolutely worthless in college. Homework is a great character builder and teaches kids that life can suck sometimes.

Ah, character building. The traditional excuse given when you have no good reason, but want a kid to do something anyway.

I did find in college after blowing off a pretty fair amount of homework in school prior. I had simply learned early to distinguish between what was important for me to understand the material and bullshiat make work.

Yeah, learning how to manage a deadline, prioritize work, and complete assigned tasks in adolescence is a complete waste of time. Not only that, but making students apply what they've learned in class to homework in order to reinforce lessons is stupid, kids automatically remember everything they learned when the bell sounds at 3:00.


I learned how to prioritize work, all right. I learned just how useless most of the homework I was given was, and what parts were interesting and useful. Like papers or projects- bigger things where my brain was actually engaged.

And if school is letting out at 3 without anything sticking, there's a major problem with how you're teaching the material. If working through the material is how you learn things and nothing from the constant droning is sticking, maybe you could reduce the constant drone of lecture to the important parts and move the serious learning inside the classroom? Otherwise, being in the classroom at all is a giant waste of time. My point is that it doesn't have to be.

ryant123: Also helpful was that most of my teachers had masters degrees in their subject area, were competent, and didn't assign work that was inane and completely pointless.


I think this is an important point. Good homework, assigned by somebody who cares and knows something about the homework, is going to enhance your understanding and engage you. You're probably also going to learn a lot in class. To me, this is all about better and more efficient teaching. You can do a lot of the rote stuff in class, where it gets done faster, with problems addressed much more quickly and easily, so it takes up much more time overall. The material gets learned faster, the material gets learned better. You save the intrusion into the student's home life for real stuff that can't be done in class. Projects, papers. Busywork has no place whatsoever being sent home.
 
2012-12-02 01:37:11 PM  

Kuroutesshin: cptjeff: Erom: Wow, amazed that the attitude is anti-homework here. If I didn't have homework in school, I would have been absolutely worthless in college. Homework is a great character builder and teaches kids that life can suck sometimes.

Ah, character building. The traditional excuse given when you have no good reason, but want a kid to do something anyway.

I did find in college after blowing off a pretty fair amount of homework in school prior. I had simply learned early to distinguish between what was important for me to understand the material and bullshiat make work.

Yeah, learning how to manage a deadline, prioritize work, and complete assigned tasks in adolescence is a complete waste of time. Not only that, but making students apply what they've learned in class to homework in order to reinforce lessons is stupid, kids automatically remember everything they learned when the bell sounds at 3:00.



Reading this thread, I can understand why it's becoming more and more common for people to mindlessly bounce from career to career, failing to actually dedicate and apply themselves and then blaming their superiors for failing to adapt to their special needs.
 
2012-12-02 01:37:18 PM  

thornhill: When I was in middle and high school in the 1990s, homework was pretty much busy work. Lots of repetitious problems. I doubt much has changed. The sheer amount of work that had to do done each night was also a bit overwhelming. I didn't get home from School until 4pm; if I was on an after school sports team it was more like 6 to 7pm. I then had to get up at 6:30am in the morning.



You should try going to a military academy boarding school. Every second of the day is pretty much accounted for. Morning formation, inspection, breakfast, classes, lunch, classes, formations, sport activities, dinner, study period, break time, study period, bed.

/cry me a river
 
2012-12-02 01:39:43 PM  
The only thing homework ever taught me is procrastinating.

Like they'd give us three months to do a book report and I would forget all about it until the week-end right before the monday it was due, read the thing sunday morning and shiat out the report in the afternoon.

Also the horror of remembering some big homework assignment you'd totally forgot about on a sunday evening (which was already depressing in the first place). I even had nightmares about that. Good times.
 
2012-12-02 01:40:44 PM  

Fark_Guy_Rob: More and more it seem school is just day-care and the homework is meant to be the learning?

I've known medical students, veterinary students, and engineers who spend significantly less time in class than a 2nd grader. I'm not really sure what kids are doing in school all day, but I'm pretty sure it's not really learning in the traditional sense.

At most universities a 'full-time' student is one who will have '15-credit hours' and that should translate, roughly, into 15 hours in class, each week. That's roughly *three hours* per day. And this is for serious university types.


Have you ever been to a university before? Do you understand how it works at all?

A comment like that tells me no.
 
2012-12-02 01:43:07 PM  

Rich Cream: Isn't this along the lines of hobbling those who can run faster than others?



But that makes everyone equal, which, after all, is the goal. Protecting feelings is far more important than discovering and developing future achievers and creators.
 
2012-12-02 01:44:27 PM  
24.media.tumblr.com

Surprised I'm the Weeners this
 
2012-12-02 01:45:19 PM  

BigNumber12: Kuroutesshin: cptjeff: Erom: Wow, amazed that the attitude is anti-homework here. If I didn't have homework in school, I would have been absolutely worthless in college. Homework is a great character builder and teaches kids that life can suck sometimes.

Ah, character building. The traditional excuse given when you have no good reason, but want a kid to do something anyway.

I did find in college after blowing off a pretty fair amount of homework in school prior. I had simply learned early to distinguish between what was important for me to understand the material and bullshiat make work.

Yeah, learning how to manage a deadline, prioritize work, and complete assigned tasks in adolescence is a complete waste of time. Not only that, but making students apply what they've learned in class to homework in order to reinforce lessons is stupid, kids automatically remember everything they learned when the bell sounds at 3:00.


Reading this thread, I can understand why it's becoming more and more common for people to mindlessly bounce from career to career, failing to actually dedicate and apply themselves and then blaming their superiors for failing to adapt to their special needs.


Almost like a certain educational institution failed to teach them how. In fact, how much of school is applying yourself? All I see in school is standardized testing and memorization, as well as imaginary concepts. And then people wonder why the trades disappeared.
 
2012-12-02 01:46:53 PM  
* first one to post this. Where the hell did Weeners come from?
 
2012-12-02 01:47:20 PM  

thornhill: And that's more like how homework is done in undergrad and grad school -- you work in study groups.


Hmmm...maybe I was/am an outlier, but I never did homework in groups---not in high school, not in undergrad, not in grad school---and I performed well and never felt especially overwhelmed with the volume of work, either.

As far as young children getting assigned homework goes: our daughter (a kindergartener) is assigned one worksheet of homework per night, and that doesn't include any reading or math practice we parents might want our kid to do.
 
2012-12-02 01:50:14 PM  
Or...the kids who have a difficult home life can do what I did -- don't do the homework. Still finished in the top 10% of my high school class, in honors classes. I think my actual homework average was around 20%, mainly for lack of doing it. I had a somewhat public full-time job in high school, so most of my teachers counted my job as my homework. A few of them even said I was going to learn far more about their subject on the job than I would in their classroom and gave me quite a few free passes.

Now in Uni, different story. Application of knowledge, not a problem. BUT rote memorization a.k.a. read & regurgitate, was the order de jour. I even had a professor get angry with me asking application-type questions of the material, insisting that "that's not what you need here! Just memorize it and spit it out on the test. You don't need to understand it!"
 
2012-12-02 01:50:22 PM  

BumpInTheNight: It's 5:30 p.m. and getting dark outside, as kids pour out of Gutenberg Elementary School in Paris 15th arrondissement.

5:30pm let-out time? Whew things have changed.


I think that's part of the argument, France has a long school day, why not get everything done then.
 
2012-12-02 01:51:01 PM  

marchnrun4: * first one to post this. Where the hell did Weeners come from?


Hmmm let's see this noob's accou
2006-09-14 22:06:21

What? How? This only makes for more questions.

/first time back since?
 
2012-12-02 01:51:12 PM  
Let me get this straight... countries are falling behind in math..
math requires repetition to learn...
decrease the amount of repetition...
better math scores?
 
2012-12-02 01:51:34 PM  

Alphakronik: Yes, let's laugh at a country with a better economy and a bigger GDP than ours for ideas that might actually work.


Oh look, a crazy person.
 
2012-12-02 01:54:57 PM  

dave2198: Let me get this straight... countries are falling behind in math..
math requires repetition to learn...
decrease the amount of repetition...
better math scores?


If it were that simple, don't you think with all the homework and repetition there wouldn't be any problems with math. Or is there more to understanding math then simply "do as many of these questions that you don't understand as you possibly can".

If you don't understand something to begin with, doing more of it won't help any.
 
2012-12-02 01:58:51 PM  

Rich Cream: marchnrun4: * first one to post this. Where the hell did Weeners come from?

Hmmm let's see this noob's accou
2006-09-14 22:06:21

What? How? This only makes for more questions.

/first time back since?


I read FARK everyday, I hardly ever post anything though
 
2012-12-02 02:00:14 PM  
Homework (that is actually graded) reinforces in-class learning...is it really that hard to understand? You know, EXPERIENCE. Those griping that homework is a sign of failed teaching obviously sucked at school (or their kid sucks at school).

The teacher will not be standing by as these kids take the standardized tests required to graduate from high school nor when they take the standardized tests required by college admissions (both undergraduate and graduate). You can argue all you want about the role standardized tests should play, but the teachers have little say in whether little snowflake gets into Harvard, Georgetown or the University of the Pacific. 

Again, homework is necessary to confirm that Johnny or Jenny Snowflake understood what was taught. It is a method of feedback used to improve learning. It is not a punishment or a tool to keep the poor impoverished. The fact that so many want to scrap it, and then piss and moan about how schools let our kids down, is pathetic.
 
2012-12-02 02:00:47 PM  

links136: dave2198: Let me get this straight... countries are falling behind in math..
math requires repetition to learn...
decrease the amount of repetition...
better math scores?

If it were that simple, don't you think with all the homework and repetition there wouldn't be any problems with math. Or is there more to understanding math then simply "do as many of these questions that you don't understand as you possibly can".

If you don't understand something to begin with, doing more of it won't help any.


Did I say that everyone could get good at math simply through repetition? No... I said that math requires repetition to learn... which it does, especially at the grade school level. Multiplication tables, division, etc.is best learned through practicing a variety of problems multiple times, so you can learn to apply the rules in various situations.

Also, did I say that repetition was the ONLY factor?

Good lord, I can see who failed reading comprehension tests in school.
 
2012-12-02 02:02:41 PM  
I thought there were recent studies showing that homework is bullshiat and not very effective? Something about giving the same homework to all the students regardless of how well they understood the lesson was fail.
 
2012-12-02 02:03:29 PM  

nmemkha: We need to return to actually teaching critical thinking and imparting knowledge rather than rote memorization to pass standardized tests.


That's no way to create more Republican voters.
 
2012-12-02 02:04:11 PM  

dave2198: links136: dave2198: Let me get this straight... countries are falling behind in math..
math requires repetition to learn...
decrease the amount of repetition...
better math scores?

If it were that simple, don't you think with all the homework and repetition there wouldn't be any problems with math. Or is there more to understanding math then simply "do as many of these questions that you don't understand as you possibly can".

If you don't understand something to begin with, doing more of it won't help any.

Did I say that everyone could get good at math simply through repetition? No... I said that math requires repetition to learn... which it does, especially at the grade school level. Multiplication tables, division, etc.is best learned through practicing a variety of problems multiple times, so you can learn to apply the rules in various situations.

Also, did I say that repetition was the ONLY factor?

Good lord, I can see who failed reading comprehension tests in school.


The other issue. Not everyone has the same comprehension of concepts. What, you think trades people understand concepts the way scholars do? There's a reason trades are disappearing fast regardless of outsourcing.
 
2012-12-02 02:05:08 PM  

jst3p: I thought there were recent studies showing that homework is bullshiat and not very effective? Something about giving the same homework to all the students regardless of how well they understood the lesson was fail.


So tailor the homework to the student... problem solved...

Doing away with homework altogether won't help anybody.
 
2012-12-02 02:06:05 PM  

BigNumber12: Rich Cream: Isn't this along the lines of hobbling those who can run faster than others?


But that makes everyone equal, which, after all, is the goal. Protecting feelings is far more important than discovering and developing future achievers and creators.


+1. Please continue...
 
2012-12-02 02:06:24 PM  

links136: Almost like a certain educational institution failed to teach them how. In fact, how much of school is applying yourself?


What do you think homework is? Any moron can nod along as a teacher guides them through a lesson plan. Homework teaches you the importance of understanding a concept well enough to be able to perform it on your own. Unless you're going to work in a sweatshop, the classroom environment is not going to teach you how to accomplish tasks independently or seek out and utilize tools and resources, like an actual job requires.

links136: All I see in school is standardized testing and memorization, as well as imaginary concepts.


What's an imaginary concept? Last time I checked, nearly all of the difficult ideas behind the tools and technologies that enable modern life aren't exactly tangible. Godforbid we teach kids to deal with ideas that can't be seen with the naked eye.

links136: And then people wonder why the trades disappeared.


No argument here. I'm in General Contracting, and we're seeing a real crisis both in recruitment of tradespeople and in leaders emerging from the ranks of the trades. Lots of people with no work ethic, no investment in the bigger picture. Just want to show up at 7:30, clock out right when break starts, and disappear at 3:30. We're facing the imminent retirement of large numbers of senior superintendents, and it's looking like large swaths of their knowledge won't be passed down to anyone.
 
2012-12-02 02:08:33 PM  

marchnrun4: Rich Cream: marchnrun4: * first one to post this. Where the hell did Weeners come from?

Hmmm let's see this noob's accou
2006-09-14 22:06:21

What? How? This only makes for more questions.

/first time back since?

I read FARK everyda
y, I hardly ever post anything though



Inconceivable.
 
2012-12-02 02:08:37 PM  

links136: dave2198: links136: dave2198: Let me get this straight... countries are falling behind in math..
math requires repetition to learn...
decrease the amount of repetition...
better math scores?

If it were that simple, don't you think with all the homework and repetition there wouldn't be any problems with math. Or is there more to understanding math then simply "do as many of these questions that you don't understand as you possibly can".

If you don't understand something to begin with, doing more of it won't help any.

Did I say that everyone could get good at math simply through repetition? No... I said that math requires repetition to learn... which it does, especially at the grade school level. Multiplication tables, division, etc.is best learned through practicing a variety of problems multiple times, so you can learn to apply the rules in various situations.

Also, did I say that repetition was the ONLY factor?

Good lord, I can see who failed reading comprehension tests in school.

The other issue. Not everyone has the same comprehension of concepts. What, you think trades people understand concepts the way scholars do? There's a reason trades are disappearing fast regardless of outsourcing.


So your solution is do get rid of scholars to tradespeople don't feel bad?

I never said the concept of homework couldn't be improved. Tailor it to the student, put people in different classes, whatever...But doing away with homework altogether would only hurt our society.
 
2012-12-02 02:08:43 PM  

RandomExcess: The problem is not assigning homework, it is grading it. If you cannot determine the appropriate grade based on in class performance (outside projects/term papers) then you are doing it wrong. So assign all the homework you want, and the student should do as much as they want, but grading it is for losers.



Because the real world doesn't grade the outcome of a person's work, right? Who cares if the rocket detonates on the launchpad, or the patient dies on the operating table, as long as the worker felt good about having tried hard, right?
 
2012-12-02 02:10:14 PM  
Anything I add will come across as trolling. Most folks are so bought into the system that my own assessment of the situation will only result in taunts and jeers. But do carry on. I'll just stand back and watch.
 
2012-12-02 02:11:12 PM  

Erom: Wow, amazed that the attitude is anti-homework here. If I didn't have homework in school, I would have been absolutely worthless in college. Homework is a great character builder and teaches kids that life can suck sometimes.


Don't they spend all day learning that in school?
 
2012-12-02 02:12:11 PM  
North African peoples problems.
 
2012-12-02 02:13:47 PM  
The race to the bottom continues.
 
2012-12-02 02:15:25 PM  

dave2198:

I never said the concept of homework couldn't be improved. Tailor it to the student, put people in different classes, whatever...But doing away with homework altogether would only hurt our society.


I agree with the "tailor it to the student" approach, but that's where I feel parents come in. As much as I would prefer teachers to assign unique assignments based on individual students' needs, I don't see that happening in most public schools. For example, the "math" homework our 5 year old daughter is assigned is below her level of understanding and "booooring" (her word), so I take the time to teach her more advanced concepts like the number line, negative numbers, how subtracting numbers is the same as adding negative numbers, etc.
 
2012-12-02 02:16:27 PM  

Rich Cream: marchnrun4: Rich Cream: marchnrun4: * first one to post this. Where the hell did Weeners come from?

Hmmm let's see this noob's accou
2006-09-14 22:06:21

What? How? This only makes for more questions.

/first time back since?

I read FARK everyday, I hardly ever post anything though


Inconceivable.


It does seem strange, but I don't know the parameters for that Weeners thing. Hell I like FARK more than reddit. Plus I was tempted to bust out an Inigo Montoya joke but eh
 
2012-12-02 02:17:50 PM  

cptjeff: No, not really. I did about one practice set a week, even though being assigned a lot more, and still did well in the advanced level math classes. That's an excuse, and it's not true. Kids can learn math at a much, much faster rate than we let them- I had a professor once who was involved in a program that was teaching basic levels of calculus to kids in elementary school. When you're learning new skills, you're applying the old ones and still getting practice with them, without the utter drudgery and uselessness of taking three months to teach fractions.


This might be news to you, but not everyone is as bright as you. For ever person like you who doesn't have to work their buns off doing math problems to get math, there are ten people breaking pencils in frustration and pouring over hours and hours of homework to etch out a B because they just don't get it (easily). Look at highschool graduation rates (about 75%). Look at the average reading level (about 6th grade). What portion of matriculated college freshman would be prepared to start calculus? My guess would be less whan a quarter. I seem to recall my undergrad class schedule has over a dozen dummy algebra classes and maybe three calc 1s. These people at one point knew algebra and geometry, but they didn't do enough problem sets to retain it. Also, most of them are worthless without a calculator because they didn't do enough pencil and paper work starting with grade school. Studies show most math errors are small computational errors, which is a direct result of lack of practice. Each grade level a student passes without mastery of the lower levels makes math harder and more soul crushing for them. It's easier to invest the time.

The only Chinese characters I still remember from two years of Chinese are the characters I recalled from memory over and over doing homework.

cptjeff: Yeah, and school should be a lot more than daycare. They're there, why not actually teach them rather than trying to make the actual learning happen at home?

Because that would be fantastically expensive and our society, for better or for worse, hasn't decided that should be a priority.
 
2012-12-02 02:24:06 PM  

jjorsett: That's what office hours are for. Not only do you get the opportunity to get individual help, but if enough people show up wanting help it should get the idea across to the prof that what he's doing isn't getting through to a lot of the class. If he wants his office hours to be spent more productively than dealing with a long line of students, he'll have to change his methods.


Or, in the case of most professors, their office hours.
 
2012-12-02 02:25:52 PM  
I don't know what kind of homework everybody else had, but our homework as the same as classroom work. It didn't add anything to learning that could not have been done in class. Actually most people did finish their homework in class.

It's interesting how some people who are for homework are the ones here who are bullying others. Saying if you don't like it then it's OBVIOUS you sucked at school. And it's clear you can't hold a job. Yet none of those things are clear at all. You'd think if you did good with homework and it taught you so much you'd know not to jump to conclusions like that. I always thought intelligent people were the ones who could debate something without getting emotional or rude.
 
2012-12-02 02:27:30 PM  
My high school economics teacher was part of the group who believed in the daily homework assignment to help the kids who didn't test well. It didn't work out so well for me because I tested well, but spent a total of 4the hours on the bus to and from home. That daily assignment nonsense is why I ended up with a 2.91 GPA instead of a 3.4 and a 75% college tuition scholarship.

/End not so csb
// 7 years later and the most money I've made since is in my current job bussing tables
/// :(
 
2012-12-02 02:31:48 PM  

dave2198: jst3p: I thought there were recent studies showing that homework is bullshiat and not very effective? Something about giving the same homework to all the students regardless of how well they understood the lesson was fail.

So tailor the homework to the student... problem solved...


With all that free time teachers have....

dave2198: jst3p: I thought there were recent studies showing that homework is bullshiat and not very effective? Something about giving the same homework to all the students regardless of how well they understood the lesson was fail.

So tailor the homework to the student... problem solved...

Doing away with homework altogether won't help anybody.


Seems like it could help just about everyone (with the exception of some high school students).

Link
 
2012-12-02 02:32:34 PM  

epoc_tnac: Erom: Wow, amazed that the attitude is anti-homework here. If I didn't have homework in school, I would have been absolutely worthless in college. Homework is a great character builder and teaches kids that life can suck sometimes.

Don't they spend all day learning that in school?



They spend all day nodding along as a teacher explains a concept. How is the teacher supposed to get any feedback whatsoever on individual comprehension and retention of subject matter without putting the student in a position that requires independent duplication of what was taught? Kids are conformity-minded - they aren't particularly likely to stand out in class and tell everyone that they're not getting it - they're much more likely to stay quiet and go along with the crowd, assuming that everyone else gets it and not wanting to be ridiculed for being "different." A student-by-student feedback method is absolutely needed. If a teacher can say "the homework is showing that a large part of the class isn't understanding such-and-such, I need to focus on that," they can actually respond to the real needs present. It's a semi-anonymous feedback mechanism, as far as the students go.
 
2012-12-02 02:33:36 PM  
He's been dreaming of this ever since he ran for class president in 5th grade.
 
2012-12-02 02:34:26 PM  

LiberalEastCoastElitist: This might be news to you, but not everyone is as bright as you. For ever person like you who doesn't have to work their buns off doing math problems to get math, there are ten people breaking pencils in frustration and pouring over hours and hours of homework to etch out a B because they just don't get it (easily). Look at highschool graduation rates (about 75%). Look at the average reading level (about 6th grade). What portion of matriculated college freshman would be prepared to start calculus? My guess would be less whan a quarter. I seem to recall my undergrad class schedule has over a dozen dummy algebra classes and maybe three calc 1s. These people at one point knew algebra and geometry, but they didn't do enough problem sets to retain it. Also, most of them are worthless without a calculator because they didn't do enough pencil and paper work starting with grade school. Studies show most math errors are small computational errors, which is a direct result of lack of practice. Each grade level a student passes without mastery of the lower levels makes math harder and more soul crushing for them. It's easier to invest the time.


And those students would be much, much better served by doing the problem sets in class where a teacher can stop by the desk and help them when they first run into problems, rather than running into the problem at home and not being able to get competent help working through it. That causes the problem to compound, the student gets frustrated, and the only feedback they ever get is that the problem is marked wrong. They struggle, they often never get help, and they fall behind, leaving it to the next teacher to clean up the mess and cover old material. It's the old ounce of prevention strategy- catch problems early, and you don't have to deal with worse problems later. If the problem sets are where the learning takes place and everyone's eyes just gloss over in class, how about having them do the part where they actually learn while they're focused and in an environment where they can easily get support, so they can learn the material more quickly and thoroughly? That's not THAT radical a concept, is it?

LiberalEastCoastElitist: Because that would be fantastically expensive and our society, for better or for worse, hasn't decided that should be a priority.


Not really. You could easily do it with the educational infrastructure we have now- but it would take time to change culture and priorities. Better teachers certainly wouldn't hurt, but there's enough talent in the ranks now to do a much, much better job than we are doing. You just need to challenge and change how we think about school and education. Of course that isn't easy, but there aren't huge monetary costs attached to it. You have to change the legal and regulatory environment, and you need some way of moving management and teachers to new ways of thinking. But you don't need to suddenly double teacher salaries or anything like that, even though that's not such a horrible idea.
 
2012-12-02 02:35:54 PM  
Professor: Homework is 10% of your grade

Me: Cool, so I'll just take a B in your class.

/MSEE, graduated with honors
 
2012-12-02 02:36:31 PM  
It's cute that most of you think school is about education... and not about training young minds how to jump through societal hoops and be good, obedient citizens.
 
2012-12-02 02:37:50 PM  
BigNumber12:
What do you think homework is? Any moron can nod along as a teacher guides them through a lesson plan. Homework teaches you the importance of understanding a concept well enough to be able to perform it on your own. Unless you're going to work in a sweatshop, the classroom environment is not going to teach you how to accomplish tasks independently or seek out and utilize tools and resources, like an actual job requires.

This is assuming you understand the concepts to begin with.

What's an imaginary concept? Last time I checked, nearly all of the difficult ideas behind the tools and technologies that enable modern life aren't exactly tangible. Godforbid we teach kids to deal with ideas that can't be seen with the naked eye.

Words are an imaginary concept. Ownership of land is an imaginary concept. Value is an imaginary concept. X and Y are imaginary concepts.

Just look at when europeans came over and started owning all the land, native americans were baffled as it was a concept that just flew over their heads as native americans are a practical people that base things on what's around them. The idea of ownership was foreign and they were taken advantage of because of it. They didn't have writing, just oral tradition. A physical car is a practical concept, the word car is imaginary. Trades are based on practical concepts, x and y arn't practical concepts. Some people learn better that way, others learn better based on practical applications with physical examples to put relatively in their brains and work better with their hands. Those people usually end up joining gangs or committing crime because they're basically left to die in the school system. It's hard to explain because people can really only think in one or the other.

As an example, when I was in machinist school, I knew what all the tools looked like and how to use them and what they did, got 98% on the practical part. I couldn't remember the names or terms of them to save my life. Of course the written tests involved remembering the names, guess how well I did on that part, despite knowing how to actually do the work perfectly? I always see the physical concept in my head, and always struggle to put the word to it.

I also struggle heavily to do tasks when told how to do it, but when i'm PHYSICALLY shown how to do it, I usually don't even need them to finish before I completely understand it. Why yes, my family including my dad were hunters and trappers all their lives, the same as anyone else living on reserves. Another one is the difference in communication between cultures. Not understood in the slightest, and you see it everyday in racial tension.

No argument here. I'm in General Contracting, and we're seeing a real crisis both in recruitment of tradespeople and in leaders emerging from the ranks of the trades. Lots of people with no work ethic, no investment in the bigger picture. Just want to show up at 7:30, clock out right when break starts, and disappear at 3:30. We're facing the imminent retirement of large numbers of senior superintendents, and it's looking like large swaths of their knowledge won't be passed down to anyone.

Just like how they were taught in school.

It's all very very confusing, and I don't think it's understood very well in our society.
 
2012-12-02 02:39:51 PM  

Pray 4 Mojo: It's cute that most of you think school is about education... and not about training young minds how to jump through societal hoops and be good, obedient citizens.


For most people that is the best they can hope for anyway.
 
2012-12-02 02:42:12 PM  
RandomExcess
The problem is not assigning homework, it is grading it. If you cannot determine the appropriate grade based on in class performance (outside projects/term papers) then you are doing it wrong. So assign all the homework you want, and the student should do as much as they want, but grading it is for losers.


I don't think grading homework is the problem at all; I don't think ours really was graded.
If you were picked to read out your answers/essays, most teachers probably made some general mark (great/neutral/sucked) somewhere so they could get back to it when deciding between two grades at the end of the year.
But the more important thing about homework wasn't how well it was done, but that it was done, i.e. that you're forced to think about or exercise what you did in class to let it sink in.

And given how kids are, that "do what you want" approach will only work if you don't care whether the kids learn something or not.
My guess is that the ones most likely in need of doing it are the ones most likely not to do it because doing it sucks a lot more if you have difficulties with it.
 
2012-12-02 02:43:55 PM  

dave2198: links136: dave2198: links136: dave2198: Let me get this straight... countries are falling behind in math..
math requires repetition to learn...
decrease the amount of repetition...
better math scores?

If it were that simple, don't you think with all the homework and repetition there wouldn't be any problems with math. Or is there more to understanding math then simply "do as many of these questions that you don't understand as you possibly can".

If you don't understand something to begin with, doing more of it won't help any.

Did I say that everyone could get good at math simply through repetition? No... I said that math requires repetition to learn... which it does, especially at the grade school level. Multiplication tables, division, etc.is best learned through practicing a variety of problems multiple times, so you can learn to apply the rules in various situations.

Also, did I say that repetition was the ONLY factor?

Good lord, I can see who failed reading comprehension tests in school.

The other issue. Not everyone has the same comprehension of concepts. What, you think trades people understand concepts the way scholars do? There's a reason trades are disappearing fast regardless of outsourcing.

So your solution is do get rid of scholars to tradespeople don't feel bad?


I never said the concept of homework couldn't be improved. Tailor it to the student, put people in different classes, whatever...But doing away with homework altogether would only hurt our society.


Yes that's exactly what I said......
 
2012-12-02 02:44:37 PM  

Pray 4 Mojo: It's cute that most of you think school is about education... and not about training young minds how to jump through societal hoops and be good, obedient citizens.


It's cute that you think that school is a huge Hollywood-esque conspiracy, rather than a mechanism for continuing and furthering the progress of our civilization at a general level. And apparently that a society full of good citizens who don't defiantly flout the law at every turn is a bad thing. You must be saving up for a one-way ticket to Somalia - you'd love the rugged, independent individuals there.
 
2012-12-02 02:45:10 PM  

jst3p: Pray 4 Mojo: It's cute that most of you think school is about education... and not about training young minds how to jump through societal hoops and be good, obedient citizens.

For most people that is the best they can hope for anyway.


True.

Not making a judgement... just saying that's the way it is.
 
2012-12-02 02:46:23 PM  

cptjeff: APE992: Then there is the whole writing paper thing that never made sense to me. Most people don't spend their lives writing proposals, dissertations, so I've never understood why high school kids have to write essays comparing/contrasting two books with their teacher offering vague feedback that doesn't really direct how to improve your thought processes to write a better paper later.

A hell of a lot of people spend a lot of time and effort writing stuff like grant proposals. Scientists do, anybody in the nonprofit world begging for money does, people in any sort of business looking to get a project started need to be able to argue their case. And even if you don't write often, being able to coherently express yourself in the English language is an incredibly valuable, and, among certain technical classes, vanishingly rare skill.

And writing papers forces you to build an argument, and learn how to use evidence to support that argument. The feedback isn't the point so much as the practice is. The subject matter is really quite irrelevant, it's the process of writing and argumentation that's important. We use literature to teach those skills because literature offers interesting insights into our culture and society, which are damn good things to understand. It's also supposed to be interesting to read. We also teach those skills in history and civics class, and a good science teacher should assign some writing on occasion as well.


Point taken, but how many what percentage of the US are scientists? A percentage of the population gets a good wage doing underwater welding but I don't see that as a good argument to teach everyone underwater welding either. And you're right, just like algebra teachs you to think abstractly I think it is pretty clear that an unfortunate chunk of the population still cannot think abstractly. Either we have a lot of vocal minorities (birthers, vaccine types, 9/11 truthers) or we have a lot of people that the school systems either passed unreasonably so (granted different times/states/countries have different standards) or these people didn't actually learn anything but how to get by long enough to get a diploma and survive somehow.

Or we could be a nation of mental disorders that affect critical thinking and reasoning skills.
 
2012-12-02 02:46:54 PM  

BigNumber12: They spend all day nodding along as a teacher explains a concept.


If you change this part, you might have a little more success. If you involve the students (even having them do independent work in the classroom), you can get that feedback instantly- and help students out early, before they fall behind. Standing up and talking at kids constantly is not a given here- it's an element of the classroom experience that can, and probably should be, changed.

BigNumber12: they aren't particularly likely to stand out in class and tell everyone that they're not getting it


That's where the teacher comes in. It's pretty easy to tell when a kid is having trouble, they don't have the greatest poker faces. Teacher walks over to kid, checks in on them. Teacher walks over to kid doing well, checks in with the same thing. All of a sudden, asking for help no longer becomes something to be feared, but just a normal part of classroom interaction. I certainly remember people asking questions in class at those ages. You raise your hand, and, "Mr. Whatever, why did this happen?" It wasn't unusual, nor was it shunned.

BigNumber12: If a teacher can say "the homework is showing that a large part of the class isn't understanding such-and-such, I need to focus on that," they can actually respond to the real needs present. It's a semi-anonymous feedback mechanism, as far as the students go.


Or they can get that feedback instantly, directly tailored to what the students are having trouble with at any given moment.

I agree that some of this work is needed- I violently disagree with the contention that it has to be done at home. You've got three times the amount of class time as college professors do. If you have to keep repeating the same stuff without many in the class getting it, it's being utterly wasted, or at least it could be used much, much more efficiently.
 
2012-12-02 02:48:35 PM  

ApatheticMonkey: For all of you farkers who think that homework is unnecessary and useless, I'd like you to go do something. Go find yourself a teacher that operates outside of a school environment - a sports coach, or a piano teacher or something. Now make your same argument to them, but replace "homework" with "practice".


Can you explain why I never, ever see the keen competitive school-age swimmers in my local swimming club practising outside the coached sessions they have from 6 - 8am and 4 - 6pm every day?
 
2012-12-02 02:49:39 PM  

maggoo: France is going down the crapper with their bullshiat socialist government. They are even threatening Arcelor-Mittal with stealing their french assets from them if they fire french workers from their foundries in france. What a bunch of idiots.


That may or may not be true, but they sure are good at killing Somali pirates.
 
2012-12-02 02:53:43 PM  
<b><a href="http://www.fark.com/comments/7463617/81039690#c81039690" target="_blank">MrGMan</a>:</b> <i>Homework (that is actually graded) reinforces in-class learning...is it really that hard to understand? You know, EXPERIENCE. Those griping that homework is a sign of failed teaching obviously sucked at school (or their kid sucks at school).

The teacher will not be standing by as these kids take the standardized tests required to graduate from high school nor when they take the standardized tests required by college admissions (both undergraduate and graduate). You can argue all you want about the role standardized tests should play, but the teachers have little say in whether little snowflake gets into Harvard, Georgetown or the University of the Pacific. 

Again, homework is necessary to confirm that Johnny or Jenny Snowflake understood what was taught. It is a method of feedback used to improve learning. It is not a punishment or a tool to keep the poor impoverished. The fact that so many want to scrap it, and then piss and moan about how schools let our kids down, is pathetic.</i>

Is this opinion supported by any actual, you know, legitimate research, or are you somehow just certain of this because of your omniscient intellect.

Did your own education make clear to you the value of unsupported assertions?
 
2012-12-02 02:54:24 PM  

jst3p: dave2198: jst3p: I thought there were recent studies showing that homework is bullshiat and not very effective? Something about giving the same homework to all the students regardless of how well they understood the lesson was fail.

So tailor the homework to the student... problem solved...

With all that free time teachers have....dave2198: jst3p: I thought there were recent studies showing that homework is bullshiat and not very effective? Something about giving the same homework to all the students regardless of how well they understood the lesson was fail.

So tailor the homework to the student... problem solved...

Doing away with homework altogether won't help anybody.

Seems like it could help just about everyone (with the exception of some high school students).

Link


Wow, one study conducted on students in Australia. I'm convinced.

There are many scholars researching the effectiveness of homework, and very few (if any) have come to the conclusion that it does no good at all.
 
2012-12-02 02:55:08 PM  

Sim Tree: While everything you said is true, there's a difference between practice and busywork, and not all teachers have the skill to distinguish between the two. Multiplication tables? Fine. Persuasive essay? Fine. Look up these 20 words in the dictionary and write down their definitions longhand? What? If you're trying to teach vocabulary,use the words in a sentence, and teach language roots and their word structure. (What does 'rectangle' 'rectify' and 'direction' have in common? If you're reeling especially lokisome, add 'erection' in there and leave them to titter.) This actually accomplishes its stated purpose, besides taking far less time, and is also more likely to lead to later success. This is what the French leaders were complaining about in TFA, when we rely on filling people's heads with rote memorization instead of teaching overall knowledge. After all, which option is more likely to allow you to use 'rectify' later in life? Learning the use of phonemes, allowing for outright wordsmithing, or strange buffoonery, such as memorizing a list of words for 24 hours which are forgotten in 72?


Yeah, there is that assumption of competency. I'm not familiar with the certification process in France or the United States, but where I live, teachers are expected to have at least one other 4 year degree than their education degree. Whether or not they bother using what intelligence they have is another issue, but I digress.

There's also the assumption that parents don't demand spelling lists, I suppose.
 
2012-12-02 03:00:43 PM  

MORB: The only thing homework ever taught me is procrastinating.

Like they'd give us three months to do a book report and I would forget all about it until the week-end right before the monday it was due, read the thing sunday morning and shiat out the report in the afternoon.

Also the horror of remembering some big homework assignment you'd totally forgot about on a sunday evening (which was already depressing in the first place). I even had nightmares about that. Good times.


THIS THIS THIS.

As a result, I do my best work up against a deadline, and can think on my feet. I can get shiat done in a pinch. If you've got a last minute thing and you need it done yesterday, I'm your man.

I am not so good time management, or at breaking a big task down into smaller parts and working at it a chunk at a time.

I am pretty sure I am undiagnosed adult ADHD.

Still, twentymumble years after graduating college, I have the nightmare that it's second semester senior year, the day of the final, I haven't been to the class in months, I don't know where the room is, and I don't have a #2 pencil. It's always math that I've never been to and I have no math credits. I can't possibly graduate. I have to pack up all of the stuff in my room and leave, and somehow figure out how to get four years worth of math credits over the summer.

/shudder
//hold me
/// also can sightread music better than just about anybody because I never ever practiced
 
2012-12-02 03:01:10 PM  

dave2198: There are many scholars researching the effectiveness of homework, and very few (if any) have come to the conclusion that it does no good at all.


How many show that it is beneficial? I admit I am not a scholar in this area but the first hit I got on google produced this:

It may surprise you, as it did me, to learn that no study has ever demonstrated any academic benefit to assigning homework before children are in high school. In fact, even in high school, the association between homework and achievement is weak -- and the data don't show that homework is responsible for higher achievement.

Link

It seems like the issue isn't as crystal clear as you think. 

If I were a betting man I would say you probably fall under this camp, again from the link:

All of these explanations are plausible, but I think there's also something else responsible for our continuing to feed children this latter-day cod-liver oil. We don't ask challenging questions about homework because we don't ask challenging questions about most things.
 
2012-12-02 03:02:46 PM  

marchnrun4: * first one to post this. Where the hell did Weeners come from?


Well you see little marchnrun4, God wanted to make little boys different from little girls...
 
2012-12-02 03:05:16 PM  

APE992: Point taken, but how many what percentage of the US are scientists? A percentage of the population gets a good wage doing underwater welding but I don't see that as a good argument to teach everyone underwater welding either.


Underwater welding is not a transferable skill- forming a good argument is. Expressing your arguments and ideas coherently is, and used in a huge range of professions, and useful for an engaged civic life. It's used in science, it's used in any business, it's used if you're a social worker, it's used if you're working on policy at the highest levels of the US Government. I'm sure you could find a use for a guy who can think for himself on the shop floor, too. Writing and critical thinking aren't limited to one or two jobs- they're essential for full membership in our society. Teaching critical thinking is tremendously important, but we constantly fail at it. But guess what? That's what those papers are. Forming an argument, evaluating the credibility of sources and arguments? What is critical thinking, if not that?

If the guy working in a shop doesn't have those skills, he'll never have the option to move out of the shop if he decides to go back to school. I don't think everybody is entirely equal in intelligence or potential, but there are a tremendous amount of people who could do a lot more with their lives if they chose to. A broad and broadly available liberal (as in liberal arts) education that gives those people the general skills they need in any role is utterly critical if we want to have any sort of economic and social mobility in this country. We need to have better education in the trades, but I'm an old school liberal on this one- we need to ensure that every person in this country has the tools engage in a well rounded intellectual and cultural life. I don't care if you work in construction- you can enjoy Schubert just as much as I do, and I can enjoy watching football. Our society would be better for it, our democracy would be better for it.
 
2012-12-02 03:10:06 PM  

orbister: ApatheticMonkey: For all of you farkers who think that homework is unnecessary and useless, I'd like you to go do something. Go find yourself a teacher that operates outside of a school environment - a sports coach, or a piano teacher or something. Now make your same argument to them, but replace "homework" with "practice".

Can you explain why I never, ever see the keen competitive school-age swimmers in my local swimming club practising outside the coached sessions they have from 6 - 8am and 4 - 6pm every day?


I would assume it is because they are focusing on doing that one task for four hours a day. Whereas in a classroom setting, they probably aren't completely focused on the task at hand. At the same time, they likely aren't given more than say, a solid hour of time at best to get comfortable with a new task or new information. Moreover, a good swimming facility may not be available to a given swimmer at all times. A suitable public pool may exist, but during the times a competitive school-age swimmer may need it, it is often booked out for other uses or is closed.
 
2012-12-02 03:10:35 PM  

jst3p: All of these explanations are plausible, but I think there's also something else responsible for our continuing to feed children this latter-day cod-liver oil. We don't ask challenging questions about homework because we don't ask challenging questions about most things.


Is this where I write another paragraph or two on the importance of teaching critical thinking?
 
2012-12-02 03:11:05 PM  

links136: This is assuming you understand the concepts to begin with.


Homework is the means of discovering which aspects of a concept the student isn't getting, so that follow-up effort can be directed in a meaningful fashion.


links136: Words are an imaginary concept. Ownership of land is an imaginary concept. Value is an imaginary concept. X and Y are imaginary concepts.

Just look at when europeans came over and started owning all the land, native americans were baffled as it was a concept that just flew over their heads as native americans are a practical people that base things on what's around them. The idea of ownership was foreign and they were taken advantage of because of it. They didn't have writing, just oral tradition. A physical car is a practical concept, the word car is imaginary. Trades are based on practical concepts, x and y arn't practical concepts. Some people learn better that way, others learn better based on practical applications with physical examples to put relatively in their brains and work better with their hands. Those people usually end up joining gangs or committing crime because they're basically left to die in the school system. It's hard to explain because people can really only think in one or the other.


Seriously, what are you advocating for? Are you holding pre-Columbian American society as an ideal? You say that they're a "practical" people who based things on what's around them - maybe that's a big part of why they were centuries, sometimes millennia behind Europeans in the development of technology and medicine. Our society today depends on identifying and developing people who can think beyond just the things they they can pick up with their hands - if we stop doing that, to be fair to the "practical" people, we'd better get comfortable sliding backwards towards primitive living.

And you cite a car as a "practical" concept, but that's not true at all. A car only "does" anything because of hundreds and hundreds of "abstract" concepts that your "impractical" people coined "abstract" words to describe, and eventually harnessed to create a "practical" result. Its curves and style only exist in the real world because people used abstract tools like computers to model that geometry, break it down into discrete, machine-able components, and solve for the dimensions that you see on the plan in front of you. X and Y aren't "imaginary" concepts, they're a human-created method of finding real unknowns in the real, practical world.

Maybe you're advocating for more distinct educational paths for your "practical" and "conceptual" people - again, homework is the best way of discovering who's who.
 
2012-12-02 03:11:33 PM  

ApatheticMonkey: Whereas in a classroom setting, they probably aren't completely focused on the task at hand.


So what if you didn't assume this as a given?
 
2012-12-02 03:13:17 PM  

cptjeff: jst3p: All of these explanations are plausible, but I think there's also something else responsible for our continuing to feed children this latter-day cod-liver oil. We don't ask challenging questions about homework because we don't ask challenging questions about most things.

Is this where I write another paragraph or two on the importance of teaching critical thinking?


Indeed.
 
2012-12-02 03:13:58 PM  

cptjeff: And those students would be much, much better served by doing the problem sets in class where a teacher can stop by the desk and help them when they first run into problems, rather than running into the problem at home and not being able to get competent help working through it.


Right now that teacher is using her 40 minutes a day with the class of 30 students teaching new concepts and going over the homework. What you're talking about would be a math lab, which would require additional teacher hours. I am not opposed, and I do think it sucks that if you're born to a single mom who's math skills end at 4th grade you're basically screwed in the math department, I am merely pointing out that what you're proposing would be expensive. We might have to do something radical, like stop spending $8 on seniors for every $1 we spend on a child.

BTW, we have a serious competent math/science teacher shortage. Don't know if you're aware.

/maybe armchair education specialists like us should go volunteer
 
2012-12-02 03:16:26 PM  

Pray 4 Mojo: It's cute that most of you think school is about education... and not about training young minds how to jump through societal hoops and be good, obedient citizens.


To some extent, that's necessary in any civilized society. It just becomes counterproductive when a school discourages individual thought and education becomes robotic, or when you have kids reciting a socialist pledge before class starts. No schooling system would ever do that, right?
 
2012-12-02 03:19:36 PM  

links136: As an example, when I was in machinist school, I knew what all the tools looked like and how to use them and what they did, got 98% on the practical part. I couldn't remember the names or terms of them to save my life. Of course the written tests involved remembering the names, guess how well I did on that part, despite knowing how to actually do the work perfectly? I always see the physical concept in my head, and always struggle to put the word to it.

I also struggle heavily to do tasks when told how to do it, but when i'm PHYSICALLY shown how to do it, I usually don't even need them to finish before I completely understand it. Why yes, my family including my dad were hunters and trappers all their lives, the same as anyone else living on reserves. Another one is the difference in communication between cultures. Not understood in the slightest, and you see it everyday in racial tension.


Sounds like a learning disorder to me.
 
2012-12-02 03:27:20 PM  

Fark_Guy_Rob: More and more it seem school is just day-care and the homework is meant to be the learning?

I've known medical students, veterinary students, and engineers who spend significantly less time in class than a 2nd grader. I'm not really sure what kids are doing in school all day, but I'm pretty sure it's not really learning in the traditional sense.

At most universities a 'full-time' student is one who will have '15-credit hours' and that should translate, roughly, into 15 hours in class, each week. That's roughly *three hours* per day. And this is for serious university types.


Don't forget the coursework at home or whoever it is you live during college. No way in hell you're finishing everything in 15 hours of class time. That will take another 15 if not 30 hours for some.
 
2012-12-02 03:29:38 PM  

cptjeff: Or they can get that feedback instantly, directly tailored to what the students are having trouble with at any given moment.

I agree that some of this work is needed- I violently disagree with the contention that it has to be done at home. You've got three times the amount of class time as college professors do. If you have to keep repeating the same stuff without many in the class getting it, it's being utterly wasted, or at least it could be used much, much more efficiently.



being pestered by a 2-year-old, and need to put up Christmas lights. I'll need to respond to this later today.
 
2012-12-02 03:30:30 PM  

LiberalEastCoastElitist: Right now that teacher is using her 40 minutes a day with the class of 30 students teaching new concepts and going over the homework.


Not really- the teacher is spending that 40 minutes a day repeating the same stuff she's taught for the previous three or four days in an effort to catch kids up. And going over the homework. So why not spend less time repeating the same crap and more time working with students to ensure that they actually get it so you don't have to spend a whole week going back over the exact same material?

And I really don't think it would require the massive increase in teaching power you think it would. When you're putting out the brushfires, you don't have to spend time and energy fighting a massive blaze.
 
2012-12-02 03:32:32 PM  

fanbladesaresharp: Don't forget the coursework at home or whoever it is you live during college. No way in hell you're finishing everything in 15 hours of class time. That will take another 15 if not 30 hours for some.


Which brings the total commitment of time about up to what a second grader spends just in the classroom. Which tells me that that classroom time could be used a hell of a lot more effectively.
 
2012-12-02 03:39:46 PM  

BigNumber12: Pray 4 Mojo: It's cute that most of you think school is about education... and not about training young minds how to jump through societal hoops and be good, obedient citizens.

It's cute that you think that school is a huge Hollywood-esque conspiracy, rather than a mechanism for continuing and furthering the progress of our civilization at a general level. And apparently that a society full of good citizens who don't defiantly flout the law at every turn is a bad thing. You must be saving up for a one-way ticket to Somalia - you'd love the rugged, independent individuals there.


Now don't be too hard on him for this. He has a point. Forced public education is to teach approved information and included in this is the desire by the school system to make 'good citizens' of us all. A certain level of 'socialization' is of course a part of the masterplan.
As for myself, I hated homework. Simple as that. But then, I'm a HS dropout. What do I kknow.

/Yet I own my own business now. Funny how life works.
 
2012-12-02 03:42:08 PM  

cptjeff: ApatheticMonkey: Whereas in a classroom setting, they probably aren't completely focused on the task at hand.

So what if you didn't assume this as a given?


Some kids'll get it, some kids won't. It'll just be a different distribution of numbers. They'll still need practice, unless you're dealing with an outlier on the smart side of the curve.
 
2012-12-02 03:42:49 PM  

ApatheticMonkey: I would assume it is because they are focusing on doing that one task for four hours a day. Whereas in a classroom setting, they probably aren't completely focused on the task at hand. At the same time, they likely aren't given more than say, a solid hour of time at best to get comfortable with a new task or new information. Moreover, a good swimming facility may not be available to a given swimmer at all times. A suitable public pool may exist, but during the times a competitive school-age swimmer may need it, it is often booked out for other uses or is closed.


You would concede, then, that coaches in at least one highly competitive sport do not expect students to practice in their own time? Nothing stopping the kids from using the lanes I use, which are in all the time the pool's open.

Ballet and dance students aren't expected to practice in their own time either. In fact it's discouraged, strongly, because of the possibility of injury.
 
2012-12-02 03:44:12 PM  
Note cards never understood note cards. If I cite my references in the paper I am writing and provide a bibliography at the end why the hell do you need three hundred three by five note cards.

/think i failed every term paper but one because of note cards.
//never was asked for note cards by any employer
///miscellaneous slashies
 
2012-12-02 03:46:13 PM  

nmemkha: We need to return to actually teaching critical thinking and imparting knowledge rather than rote memorization to pass standardized tests.


cdn.uproxx.com
 
2012-12-02 03:47:10 PM  
Meanwhile, Finland wonders what took everybody so long.
 
2012-12-02 03:50:43 PM  

Gulper Eel: Meanwhile, Finland wonders what took everybody so long.


The Finns are smug bastards, what with their cheerful and humble approach to wildly superior public institutions.
 
2012-12-02 03:53:19 PM  

FishyFred: This is not necessarily a FAIL. This is not a new concept. It just hasn't been tried much (if at all) since the beginning of the Cold War.


Kids need to learn how to self-start outside of an academic setting. An entire generation of schoolkids who have nothing but free time after school will get a massive system shock the first time a job or university gives them a take-home assignment.
 
2012-12-02 03:54:15 PM  
Most homework is just busywork. It give the teacher something on which to easily base a grade is all.
 
2012-12-02 03:58:01 PM  
Sounds like a solution liberals would come up with. "If it's hard, dont do it."
 
2012-12-02 03:58:48 PM  

namegoeshere: MORB: The only thing homework ever taught me is procrastinating.

Like they'd give us three months to do a book report and I would forget all about it until the week-end right before the monday it was due, read the thing sunday morning and shiat out the report in the afternoon.

Also the horror of remembering some big homework assignment you'd totally forgot about on a sunday evening (which was already depressing in the first place). I even had nightmares about that. Good times.

THIS THIS THIS.

As a result, I do my best work up against a deadline, and can think on my feet. I can get shiat done in a pinch. If you've got a last minute thing and you need it done yesterday, I'm your man.

I am not so good time management, or at breaking a big task down into smaller parts and working at it a chunk at a time.

I am pretty sure I am undiagnosed adult ADHD.

Still, twentymumble years after graduating college, I have the nightmare that it's second semester senior year, the day of the final, I haven't been to the class in months, I don't know where the room is, and I don't have a #2 pencil. It's always math that I've never been to and I have no math credits. I can't possibly graduate. I have to pack up all of the stuff in my room and leave, and somehow figure out how to get four years worth of math credits over the summer.

/shudder
//hold me
/// also can sightread music better than just about anybody because I never ever practiced


I farking hate math, and it sounds like Freddy's been paying us both a visit with that "haven't been to match class in months" thing.

/Fuking terrible dream

//Months
 
2012-12-02 03:59:28 PM  

orbister: ApatheticMonkey: I would assume it is because they are focusing on doing that one task for four hours a day. Whereas in a classroom setting, they probably aren't completely focused on the task at hand. At the same time, they likely aren't given more than say, a solid hour of time at best to get comfortable with a new task or new information. Moreover, a good swimming facility may not be available to a given swimmer at all times. A suitable public pool may exist, but during the times a competitive school-age swimmer may need it, it is often booked out for other uses or is closed.

You would concede, then, that coaches in at least one highly competitive sport do not expect students to practice in their own time? Nothing stopping the kids from using the lanes I use, which are in all the time the pool's open.

Ballet and dance students aren't expected to practice in their own time either. In fact it's discouraged, strongly, because of the possibility of injury.


Sure. I'm not going to assume to be an expert in all fields. I'm not an athelete either, so I'm not going to front about it.

More on point however - I'm not sure about dance, but in the case of swimming, you've given an example of an environment in which at least twenty hours of time per week have been devoted to the learning and practice of the sport. That's roughly 4 times as much time per week spent practicing as being in class learning math, literacy or any other subject taught at the public school level. It's not like these kids aren't practicing just because the coach or whoever is there.

What I'm getting at here is that you need to spend time practicing a task, be it supervised time or not, in order to gain mastery of it. What's being proposed here, is that somehow these kids will miraculously learn what they need to in class alone.
 
2012-12-02 04:05:22 PM  

cptjeff: LiberalEastCoastElitist: Right now that teacher is using her 40 minutes a day with the class of 30 students teaching new concepts and going over the homework.

Not really- the teacher is spending that 40 minutes a day repeating the same stuff she's taught for the previous three or four days in an effort to catch kids up. And going over the homework. So why not spend less time repeating the same crap and more time working with students to ensure that they actually get it so you don't have to spend a whole week going back over the exact same material?


Ok, let's say she decreases the redundancies so now she has 20 minutes a day to help individual students. 20min * 60 seconds / 30 students = 40 seconds/student/day. Sorry, that's just not going to make a huge impact.

When I was a relatively motivated college student taking calculus with a somewhat shaky foundation I probably got two hours a week help from my math major housemate and two hours a week from the math lab. I still pulled down a B. I don't see the time requirement for a weak student struggling in algebra to be any less. Four hours a week of a unionized certified math teacher's time is fairly pricey. Add to that the kids struggling in reading who could use help and multiply that by the number of students struggling across the country and you basically have a new entitlement program. Perhaps you can see know why society's solution to this problem is to expect parental input in the form of help with homework.
 
2012-12-02 04:05:41 PM  

ApatheticMonkey: orbister: ApatheticMonkey: I would assume it is because they are focusing on doing that one task for four hours a day. Whereas in a classroom setting, they probably aren't completely focused on the task at hand. At the same time, they likely aren't given more than say, a solid hour of time at best to get comfortable with a new task or new information. Moreover, a good swimming facility may not be available to a given swimmer at all times. A suitable public pool may exist, but during the times a competitive school-age swimmer may need it, it is often booked out for other uses or is closed.

You would concede, then, that coaches in at least one highly competitive sport do not expect students to practice in their own time? Nothing stopping the kids from using the lanes I use, which are in all the time the pool's open.

Ballet and dance students aren't expected to practice in their own time either. In fact it's discouraged, strongly, because of the possibility of injury.

Sure. I'm not going to assume to be an expert in all fields. I'm not an athelete either, so I'm not going to front about it.

More on point however - I'm not sure about dance, but in the case of swimming, you've given an example of an environment in which at least twenty hours of time per week have been devoted to the learning and practice of the sport. That's roughly 4 times as much time per week spent practicing as being in class learning math, literacy or any other subject taught at the public school level. It's not like these kids aren't practicing just because the coach or whoever is there.

What I'm getting at here is that you need to spend time practicing a task, be it supervised time or not, in order to gain mastery of it. What's being proposed here, is that somehow these kids will miraculously learn what they need to in class alone.


Reality seems to disagree with you, as it relates to education. Someone above mentioned Finland, here is some detail:

The school day starts between 8 and 9am in the morning and finishes between 1 and 2pm in the afternoon. The class has 25 lessons a week. Each lesson is 45 minutes long. There are 3 hours and 45 minutes of instruction each day on average. In the Aurora school this class (5th grade) has one four-lesson day, one six-lesson day and the other days are five lessons long.

...

The role of homework in Finnish schools has continuously become less important. Pupils do their learning assignments mostly during the school day so that they can spend time with their own activities at home. According to our surveys, Finnish pupils in basic education spend less than one hour per day doing homework. 

Link
 
2012-12-02 04:05:48 PM  

Gdalescrboz: Sounds like a solution liberals would come up with. "If it's hard, dont do it."


Conservative solution: Even if it's boring and tedious and might even due more harm than it does good, keep doing it that way because that's the way it is, so that's the way it always should be.
 
2012-12-02 04:07:10 PM  

DarkSoulNoHope: Gdalescrboz: Sounds like a solution liberals would come up with. "If it's hard, dont do it."

Conservative solution: Even if it's boring and tedious and might even due more harm than it does good, keep doing it that way because that's the way it is, so that's the way it always should be.


I need to do my homework more, brb! :)
 
2012-12-02 04:08:24 PM  

LiberalEastCoastElitist: links136: As an example, when I was in machinist school, I knew what all the tools looked like and how to use them and what they did, got 98% on the practical part. I couldn't remember the names or terms of them to save my life. Of course the written tests involved remembering the names, guess how well I did on that part, despite knowing how to actually do the work perfectly? I always see the physical concept in my head, and always struggle to put the word to it.

I also struggle heavily to do tasks when told how to do it, but when i'm PHYSICALLY shown how to do it, I usually don't even need them to finish before I completely understand it. Why yes, my family including my dad were hunters and trappers all their lives, the same as anyone else living on reserves. Another one is the difference in communication between cultures. Not understood in the slightest, and you see it everyday in racial tension.

Sounds like a learning disorder to me.


A learning disorder that got me 98% on the practical part of machining? Some disorder.
 
2012-12-02 04:19:19 PM  

cptjeff: LiberalEastCoastElitist: Right now that teacher is using her 40 minutes a day with the class of 30 students teaching new concepts and going over the homework.

Not really- the teacher is spending that 40 minutes a day repeating the same stuff she's taught for the previous three or four days in an effort to catch kids up. And going over the homework. So why not spend less time repeating the same crap and more time working with students to ensure that they actually get it so you don't have to spend a whole week going back over the exact same material?


40 minutes divided by 30 students = 1 minute 20 seconds per student.

If you're a little lucky, and you have a smaller class of 20 students, and a longer period of 55 minutes, you still only have 2 minutes, 45 seconds to spend with each student.

I'm not suggesting that one-on-one time isn't important. It is. But instruction time is at a severe premium as it is, and you can only subdivide it so many ways. Sooner or later, a student _has_ to learn to work independently and to persevere when things get tough.

Generally speaking, though, I'll assign modest (and relevant) classroom work and give time to work on it in class. And I'll try to give just enough so that the students who get it quickly and can function independently have little-to-nothing to bring home with them, while students who can stand the extra practice can work on it a little more at home.
 
2012-12-02 04:22:22 PM  
The article says that the amount of work is such that kids don't have time for the arts, music, or sports. These activities are helpful to emotional and physical development (and health, for that matter), plus they can greatly enhance quality of life.

It's a bit ironic that such a problem would occur in Paris, a city known for its artistic influence.
 
2012-12-02 04:22:58 PM  

BigNumber12: links136: This is assuming you understand the concepts to begin with.

Homework is the means of discovering which aspects of a concept the student isn't getting, so that follow-up effort can be directed in a meaningful fashion.


links136: Words are an imaginary concept. Ownership of land is an imaginary concept. Value is an imaginary concept. X and Y are imaginary concepts.

Just look at when europeans came over and started owning all the land, native americans were baffled as it was a concept that just flew over their heads as native americans are a practical people that base things on what's around them. The idea of ownership was foreign and they were taken advantage of because of it. They didn't have writing, just oral tradition. A physical car is a practical concept, the word car is imaginary. Trades are based on practical concepts, x and y arn't practical concepts. Some people learn better that way, others learn better based on practical applications with physical examples to put relatively in their brains and work better with their hands. Those people usually end up joining gangs or committing crime because they're basically left to die in the school system. It's hard to explain because people can really only think in one or the other.

Seriously, what are you advocating for? Are you holding pre-Columbian American society as an ideal? You say that they're a "practical" people who based things on what's around them - maybe that's a big part of why they were centuries, sometimes millennia behind Europeans in the development of technology and medicine. Our society today depends on identifying and developing people who can think beyond just the things they they can pick up with their hands - if we stop doing that, to be fair to the "practical" people, we'd better get comfortable sliding backwards towards primitive living.

And you cite a car as a "practical" concept, but that's not true at all. A car only "does" anything because of hundreds and hundreds ...


This is my point exactly. Everything I tried to explain went right over your head. Native Americans have been hunters and trappers in their whole existence. This is true today. My Grandfather did it, my father did it, I have uncles and cousins that sill hunt and trap. We are people that work with our hands, our thinking hasn't changed. We never had books or writing, we hunted with our eyes and hands, besides the fact natives were behind because they had no trade routes with any other civilization and were isolated with the rest of the world.

My point is that when you look at a car, thats the physical part of it. The actual word car is an imaginary concept created to represent the physical part of it. This is why trades are disappearing. No one can even grasp the difference between a physical concept and imaginary one. You can't. If you were to show me a car, you would show me a physical car. Could you show me the word car? You can only say it.

The fact you don't understand this difference is exactly why trades are disappearing. They will continue to disappear until this is understood, like in germany. I'm not saying we have to be fair to trades people, i'm saying we have to identify them and teach them to their strengths. This is not done whatsoever.

I mean, you think construction is done with thoughts or your hands?
 
2012-12-02 04:27:45 PM  

LiberalEastCoastElitist: links136: As an example, when I was in machinist school, I knew what all the tools looked like and how to use them and what they did, got 98% on the practical part. I couldn't remember the names or terms of them to save my life. Of course the written tests involved remembering the names, guess how well I did on that part, despite knowing how to actually do the work perfectly? I always see the physical concept in my head, and always struggle to put the word to it.

I also struggle heavily to do tasks when told how to do it, but when i'm PHYSICALLY shown how to do it, I usually don't even need them to finish before I completely understand it. Why yes, my family including my dad were hunters and trappers all their lives, the same as anyone else living on reserves. Another one is the difference in communication between cultures. Not understood in the slightest, and you see it everyday in racial tension.

Sounds like a learning disorder to me.


On another note, this is another huge issue in western civilization. We expect everyone to think and act the exact same way. If they have different strengths and understand things in a different way? Learning disorder.
 
2012-12-02 04:30:24 PM  

links136: A learning disorder that got me 98% on the practical part of machining? Some disorder.


Yes, look up declarative vs. procedural memory.
 
2012-12-02 04:35:41 PM  

jst3p:

Reality seems to disagree with you, as it relates to education. Someone above mentioned Finland, here is some detail:

The school day starts ...


It also looks like the Finnish school system is set up differently than ours here. Over a third of their school day is based around arts/sports/craftwork, while those subjects are being increasingly squeezed out of the school day around here. I would argue that these kids are getting alot of their skills via interdisciplinary study. If you look at the subjects in there, you'll find there's a LOT more math etc going in there than meets the eye. It doesn't hurt that these subjects are also the 'fun' subjects that can keep students engaged in learning.

Also note that their teachers are far more educated than those here. ALL of their teachers have a masters degree in something. They also have a lot more flexibility in their teaching methods and curricula. There aren't any defined metrics that they have to answer to, so they can adjust teaching to bring students up to where they need to be, while focusing less on having to be able to check off that box on their own paperwork.

All of that combined reduces the need for outside study.

Also, that pertains to kids ten years old and under. I don't know a lot of teachers who give a lot of homework to kids that age either; most of that stuff should be dead simple for the kids. I work with junior high school students currently, so that's where my perspective is coming from.
 
2012-12-02 04:39:30 PM  
I am all for this. With school, I never wanted to be there in the first pace, then they just send you home at the end of the day with more work so that you can continue to have your life ruined and no hope of escape.

Now let us bear in mind also I was completely traumatized by the whole school thing and am currently of the belief that it should be eliminated entirely. So many people think made-for-tv movies with historical settings are 'historical record' and that condoms don't work and dinosaurs lived with Jesus that it shows just how good of a job those places are doing at educating the populace, anyway.
 
2012-12-02 04:40:36 PM  

Eddie Adams from Torrance: Assigned homework is bullshiat.
If they can't fit all of the learnin they need into an 8 hour day then they're not doing it right.


Summer vacation is also bullschitt. If they cannot fit all the learning they need into 9 months then they are not doing it right. School should be taught year round.
 
2012-12-02 04:41:18 PM  

nmemkha: We need to return to actually teaching critical thinking and imparting knowledge rather than rote memorization to pass standardized tests.


I bet you have that phrase memorized, amiright?
 
2012-12-02 04:41:26 PM  

LiberalEastCoastElitist: links136: A learning disorder that got me 98% on the practical part of machining? Some disorder.

Yes, look up declarative vs. procedural memory.


So my learning disability is that i'm a visual thinker? Is that what you're saying? I'm simply better at using my hands and thinking in visual terms. It's not that I can't think in other ways, i'm just not nearly as effective at it, so I play to my strengths. Is that really a disorder, or just having different strengths and abilities?
 
2012-12-02 04:43:28 PM  

MooseUpNorth: 40 minutes divided by 30 students = 1 minute 20 seconds per student.


Not every student is going to need the help every session. If more than one or two has an issue with a problem, you gov over it on the board. If you have 30 kids, 10 might ask a question on any given day. 40 minutes divided by 10 is 4 minutes. That's plenty to go over a problem or two. And they're learning the material that you might have dedicated a week to in the past in two or three days, since you're identifying and fixing the problems they're having with the material early- which gives you a lot of extra time that you didn't have before since you were busy talking past bored kids.

LiberalEastCoastElitist: When I was a relatively motivated college student taking calculus with a somewhat shaky foundation I probably got two hours a week help from my math major housemate and two hours a week from the math lab. I still pulled down a B. I don't see the time requirement for a weak student struggling in algebra to be any less.


That's where this changes things though- you would have a much, much stronger foundation to work from, since problems would have been caught and worked through early. If you catch things early, you keep them from escalating into much worse problems. So you don't need the massive time commitment that you need to address a struggling student now.


MooseUpNorth: while students who can stand the extra practice can work on it a little more at home.


This is a big part of what bugs me. Practice isn't the key. Understanding the concept is. Practice can force it, but if there's something that kid isn't getting, they don't have any way to figure out what they're doing wrong until they get back to school, where the teacher will usually fail to help them anyway- they'll see the problem, mark it wrong, and never really explain the material, and that kid will fall behind. It accumulates. If they have no one at home who can coach them through it and help them figure out what they're missing (and let's take a wild guess here and say that it's much more likely poor kids will fall into that category) having that sheet in front of them at home is just going to get them frustrated, and angry at their inability to do the work, and it won't help them one iota. You can't practice something you don't know how to do.

Rote homework just compounds problems for kids that don't know how to do it, and it's just an unnecessary nuisance for kids who do.
 
2012-12-02 04:43:53 PM  

Eddie Adams from Torrance: Assigned homework is bullshiat.
If they can't fit all of the learnin they need into an 8 hour day then they're not doing it right.


Came here to day this, more or less. There is no reason kids need two hours of homework just to fill their evenings.
 
2012-12-02 04:49:00 PM  

Aikidogamer: Eddie Adams from Torrance: Assigned homework is bullshiat.
If they can't fit all of the learnin they need into an 8 hour day then they're not doing it right.

Came here to day this, more or less. There is no reason kids need two hours of homework just to fill their evenings.


That's really what it boils down to. If you can't get kids to retain information with the amount of time kids are already committing in school, than something about your teaching sucks.
 
2012-12-02 04:56:38 PM  

jst3p: Reality seems to disagree with you, as it relates to education. Someone above mentioned Finland, here is some detail:

The school day starts ...


Okay, I just read the original article, (What? This is Fark. What did you expect?) and it's mostly talking about little kids. The way people were talking about essays and dissertations made me think we were talking about high school. (Hold on. Does that mean that some places are making little kids write essays?) From an education perspective, little kids operate differently from what I've been talking about. I deal mostly with kids that are older than that, and with the volume of stuff they need to learn, homework is something that has to be done. However, with kids in elementary school, the main goal is to get them excited about learning, and the rest will take its course. Hell, I've helped teach those grades, and the only "homework" we gave out was a: optional, and b: self directed. If we're giving kids who haven't reached puberty substational amounts of homework, then we're doing it wrong.

I disagree with abolishing it for jr high/middle school kids though. it needs to be phased in around that time, otherwise high school will hit them like a brick.
 
2012-12-02 04:59:09 PM  

ApatheticMonkey: jst3p: Reality seems to disagree with you, as it relates to education. Someone above mentioned Finland, here is some detail:

The school day starts ...

Okay, I just read the original article, (What? This is Fark. What did you expect?) and it's mostly talking about little kids. The way people were talking about essays and dissertations made me think we were talking about high school. (Hold on. Does that mean that some places are making little kids write essays?) From an education perspective, little kids operate differently from what I've been talking about. I deal mostly with kids that are older than that, and with the volume of stuff they need to learn, homework is something that has to be done. However, with kids in elementary school, the main goal is to get them excited about learning, and the rest will take its course. Hell, I've helped teach those grades, and the only "homework" we gave out was a: optional, and b: self directed. If we're giving kids who haven't reached puberty substational amounts of homework, then we're doing it wrong.

I disagree with abolishing it for jr high/middle school kids though. it needs to be phased in around that time, otherwise high school will hit them like a brick.


This is Fark. The conversation isn't at all restricted to the topic of the actual article.
 
2012-12-02 05:02:50 PM  
Why send them to school at all? Kids with a bad home life suffer in school, better not punish them and send them to school. Farm hd hi a new low for setting standards for kids. The baby Boomer generation may yet be one upped as the worst generation of parents.
 
2012-12-02 05:04:47 PM  

links136: So my learning disability is that i'm a visual thinker? Is that what you're saying? I'm simply better at using my hands and thinking in visual terms. It's not that I can't think in other ways, i'm just not nearly as effective at it, so I play to my strengths. Is that really a disorder, or just having different strengths and abilities?


Some would consider failing a test despite knowing the material because you can't recall names of items you've been working with for weeks a disorder, yes. No need to get butthurt, it just means you're weak in one or two areas.

cptjeff: Not every student is going to need the help every session. If more than one or two has an issue with a problem, you gov over it on the board. If you have 30 kids, 10 might ask a question on any given day. 40 minutes divided by 10 is 4 minutes. That's plenty to go over a problem or two. And they're learning the material that you might have dedicated a week to in the past in two or three days, since you're identifying and fixing the problems they're having with the material early- which gives you a lot of extra time that you didn't have before since you were busy talking past bored kids.


Did you know that 50% of the population has a double digit IQ? Have you ever tried to teach long division to someone with a double digit IQ? It cannot be done in a couple minutes a day. You can't drill the multiplication table into someone's head in a couple minutes a day. If 10 are asking for help, that means 10 didn't ask for help because they didn't need it and the remaining 10 aren't asking for help because they didn't attempt the homework and really just need someone to sit them down and hold their hand and make them do the homework.

cptjeff: That's where this changes things though- you would have a much, much stronger foundation to work from, since problems would have been caught and worked through early. If you catch things early, you keep them from escalating into much worse problems. So you don't need the massive time commitment that you need to address a struggling student now.


6ish hours/week to hack a 4 credit calculus class is a massive time commitment? My generation is soft.
 
2012-12-02 05:08:01 PM  
The less individual work and more group work is the mantra of the left. This way the dummies don't look as dumb on paper.
 
2012-12-02 05:10:38 PM  

ApatheticMonkey: jst3p: Reality seems to disagree with you, as it relates to education. Someone above mentioned Finland, here is some detail:

The school day starts ...

Okay, I just read the original article, (What? This is Fark. What did you expect?) and it's mostly talking about little kids. The way people were talking about essays and dissertations made me think we were talking about high school. (Hold on. Does that mean that some places are making little kids write essays?) From an education perspective, little kids operate differently from what I've been talking about. I deal mostly with kids that are older than that, and with the volume of stuff they need to learn, homework is something that has to be done. However, with kids in elementary school, the main goal is to get them excited about learning, and the rest will take its course. Hell, I've helped teach those grades, and the only "homework" we gave out was a: optional, and b: self directed. If we're giving kids who haven't reached puberty substational amounts of homework, then we're doing it wrong.

I disagree with abolishing it for jr high/middle school kids though. it needs to be phased in around that time, otherwise high school will hit them like a brick.


I've got one in fourth grade, age nine. This weekend she had to read three chapters of a book on the top edge of her reading level and answer 20 one to three sentence comprehension questions and write a one page essay.

Granted she's in the top reading group, but still, this is excessive.
 
2012-12-02 05:15:06 PM  

Fark_Guy_Rob: More and more it seem school is just day-care and the homework is meant to be the learning?

I've known medical students, veterinary students, and engineers who spend significantly less time in class than a 2nd grader. I'm not really sure what kids are doing in school all day, but I'm pretty sure it's not really learning in the traditional sense.

At most universities a 'full-time' student is one who will have '15-credit hours' and that should translate, roughly, into 15 hours in class, each week. That's roughly *three hours* per day. And this is for serious university types.


Yeah, but you are expected to spend 30 hours outside of class on homework. 2:1 ratio average, 1:1 for easy classes, 3:1 for hard classes.
 
2012-12-02 05:15:35 PM  
I taught music in the inner-city for 10 years. One of the biggest challenges was getting students to practice at home. Most of them lived in small apartments and/or had multiple siblings, making it damn-near impossible. I used most of my after-school and vacation time getting kids ready for all-state and other concerts because all of our practice had to be done outside of class-time, but away from their homes.

It's tough. Some kids don't even have the space at home, like a table big enough to do their homework on. These scenarios are things that most people don't consider, but together contribute to lower test scores and achievement.
 
2012-12-02 05:16:11 PM  

Gulper Eel: Meanwhile, Finland wonders what took everybody so long.


Ditto the Czech Republic. Which also like Finland isn't big on exams.
 
2012-12-02 05:29:03 PM  

LiberalEastCoastElitist: links136: So my learning disability is that i'm a visual thinker? Is that what you're saying? I'm simply better at using my hands and thinking in visual terms. It's not that I can't think in other ways, i'm just not nearly as effective at it, so I play to my strengths. Is that really a disorder, or just having different strengths and abilities?

Some would consider failing a test despite knowing the material because you can't recall names of items you've been working with for weeks a disorder, yes. No need to get butthurt, it just means you're weak in one or two areas.
.


I didn't fail them. I would get around 70%, which isn't as good as 98%. I AM weak in that area, I don't understand why thats a learning disorder, or the only example of knowledge and abilities. I'm considered by my teacher with 20 years of managing machine shops a genius in the field, am as good as anyone at doing the work, I just can't show it by remembering the names of tools on a piece of paper because i'm better at remembering the visual and practical aspect, and you know, actually doing the work.

Yet that way is the standard of showing knowledge and ability. That's my point. Alot of people are being overlooked because their strengths are different than what your expected to be good at, even though those strengths are vital to society, they can't even prove those strengths because there's nothing in school that allows you to do that. It was the same in high school for me. My parents knew my intelligence, so did my teachers. But because i only got around 70% in school for the same reason above, it's all my fault.

This is why gang members have grown rapidly. I've met plenty over the years, I notice they think the same way. Same with guys in trades, guys that are former gang members or associates trying to clean up their lives and do what they originally should have done, but didn't because they were cast out of a system that rejected them for having different strengths, at least in my observation. No different than my aboriginal friends and family members, at least the male ones. This is also in my opinion why girls will do better on average than guys in school now. Guy's are more visual.

It's almost a 'suburban' vs 'street-sense' difference. the street-sense people are cast out as stupid, even though they have very useful strengths in different ways. And then we're all shocked as to why we lack trades people.

It's a bloody nightmare. It's destroyed many lives and will continue to do so until it's understood properly.
 
2012-12-02 05:30:22 PM  

links136: Ed Willy: Actually, trying to fix the circle of poverty and bad home life is much harder for the government to do. Government and schools alone cannot fix the bad thinking patterns that trap people in a cycle of shiat jobs and poor decisions.

What, you think schools don't have any affect on thinking patterns?


Behavior patterns are much more difficult to work with. It takes models you can actually see, not abstract ideas
 
2012-12-02 05:32:50 PM  

links136: I'm considered by my teacher with 20 years of managing machine shops a genius in the field, am as good as anyone at doing the work,


In your field a genius is only as good as others at doing the work?


/just picking on you
 
2012-12-02 05:39:04 PM  

Eddie Adams from Torrance: Assigned homework is bullshiat. If they can't fit all of the learnin they need into an 8 hour day then they're not doing it right.


How many school districts actually engage students in anything near eight hours of work? I can't vouch for French schools, but the typical American high school, as far as I know, has them there for about seven hours, including lunch. Chicago schools are just now getting in up to 6 hours of actual instructional time per day, which is regarded as a bit of a coup.
 
2012-12-02 05:39:30 PM  

links136: This is why gang members have grown rapidly.


Wait, did you just claim the cause of increased gang membership is the fact that kids who show their intelligence in non-traditional ways aren't being recognized?
 
2012-12-02 05:43:33 PM  

Eddie Adams from Torrance: Assigned homework is bullshiat.
If they can't fit all of the learnin they need into an 8 hour day then they're not doing it right.


Honestly I agree especially for elementary school. You're telling me an 8 year old needs to sit in a chair for 5 hours a day (presumably 2 hours of fun classes, lunch, and recess) and THEN needs to come home and sit in a chair and do more of that?

Middle school, ok I understand a few assignments (not busywork) and reading. High school I understand although I was so busy in high school I made sure that I would have all my assignments done before I went home.

Some kids have shiatty parents who are just going to sit them in front of TV when they are home so maybe they'd be better of doing homework. But ideally I'd want them doing imaginative or creative things or learning new skills they don't learn in school (hiking, bake a cake, go swimming) or just spending time with their family.
 
2012-12-02 05:53:53 PM  

EVERYBODY PANIC: BigNumber12: Pray 4 Mojo: It's cute that most of you think school is about education... and not about training young minds how to jump through societal hoops and be good, obedient citizens.

It's cute that you think that school is a huge Hollywood-esque conspiracy, rather than a mechanism for continuing and furthering the progress of our civilization at a general level. And apparently that a society full of good citizens who don't defiantly flout the law at every turn is a bad thing. You must be saving up for a one-way ticket to Somalia - you'd love the rugged, independent individuals there.

Now don't be too hard on him for this. He has a point. Forced public education is to teach approved information and included in this is the desire by the school system to make 'good citizens' of us all. A certain level of 'socialization' is of course a part of the masterplan.
As for myself, I hated homework. Simple as that. But then, I'm a HS dropout. What do I kknow.

/Yet I own my own business now. Funny how life works.


Thank you. Like I said... I'm not making a qualitative judgement on the system... or claiming conspiracy.

/College dropout
//Rough start, but doing very well for myself
 
2012-12-02 06:12:09 PM  

jst3p: links136: This is why gang members have grown rapidly.

Wait, did you just claim the cause of increased gang membership is the fact that kids who show their intelligence in non-traditional ways aren't being recognized?


Basically yes, it's alot more complicated than that. This is my own observation and obviously I can't prove it, but it's generally the same thing over and over again. Only one guy in my class wasn't a criminal or former gang member, including teachers, not a huge sample though. Not that they were bad people either, they were just cast out of the system because they couldn't do the work in school. They also had the same thinking style and we related in a huge amount of ways because of it. Even though they came from poor backgrounds and I came from a middle-class one. I also related quite differently with my class-mates in middle-class backgrounds and ones in trades, even though I looked completely out of place with trades folk.

Co-workers the same, former gang-members trying to clean up their lives, doing what they do best, trades. They probably should have gone that route from school, but nothing in their school offered that so 1. they dropped out or 2. struggled immensely. Some had similar experiences where they were expected to think in terms of imaginary concepts by their parents or teachers, but could only think with their hands, and were blamed for not trying hard enough or something among the lines.

Every gang member I met outside of work either 1. worked in a trade or 2. were just gang members and had all generally had the same strengths and as everyone else I talked about. The only real variance I saw was level of communication. Ones who could talk and read body language well were great drug dealers, ones that weren't so great would do other crimes like robbery and such. Some were just terrible people, psychopathic, other's were good natured doing what they knew how to do to get by, usually selling drugs. Of coarse, environment and influences would play a big factor as well, regardless of schooling.

Like I said, I can't prove these as I don't have a study on it, but this is my observation in working in the trades and spending quite a fair amount of time in the streets of Winnipeg. There's so many differences between the two worlds I could write a book about it.

I'm no expert, it's just my opinion on the matter. Take it how you want.
 
2012-12-02 06:21:32 PM  
images1.wikia.nocookie.net

Have a thing or two to say about homework. And giant Terrible Birds.
 
2012-12-02 06:30:54 PM  

freewill: Eddie Adams from Torrance: Assigned homework is bullshiat. If they can't fit all of the learnin they need into an 8 hour day then they're not doing it right.

How many school districts actually engage students in anything near eight hours of work? I can't vouch for French schools, but the typical American high school, as far as I know, has them there for about seven hours, including lunch. Chicago schools are just now getting in up to 6 hours of actual instructional time per day, which is regarded as a bit of a coup.


But not all of those six hours of "instructional time" are actually devoted to instruction. Much of it goes to dealing with classroom disruptions and poor student behavior and various administrative tasks like taking attendance, collecting homework (and listening to students' excuses for why they couldn't get the homework), etc.

For some percentage of those students, the reduced instruction time isn't a big deal: they're quick enough that just 10 minutes of instruction per subject is sufficient for them to learn the material. For other students, though, even if every single minute of the day went instruction---and if these students were able to sustain their attention and focus for that length of time (unlikely)---they're not going to learn everything well. Sometimes it's due to low-quality teachers, sometimes the students are so far behind that nothing new makes sense to them, and much of the time it's because the students just aren't that bright. Sometimes all these things are in play.
 
2012-12-02 06:38:24 PM  

links136: LiberalEastCoastElitist: links136: So my learning disability is that i'm a visual thinker? Is that what you're saying? I'm simply better at using my hands and thinking in visual terms. It's not that I can't think in other ways, i'm just not nearly as effective at it, so I play to my strengths. Is that really a disorder, or just having different strengths and abilities?

Some would consider failing a test despite knowing the material because you can't recall names of items you've been working with for weeks a disorder, yes. No need to get butthurt, it just means you're weak in one or two areas.
.

I didn't fail them. I would get around 70%, which isn't as good as 98%. I AM weak in that area, I don't understand why thats a learning disorder, or the only example of knowledge and abilities. I'm considered by my teacher with 20 years of managing machine shops a genius in the field, am as good as anyone at doing the work, I just can't show it by remembering the names of tools on a piece of paper because i'm better at remembering the visual and practical aspect, and you know, actually doing the work.

Yet that way is the standard of showing knowledge and ability. That's my point. Alot of people are being overlooked because their strengths are different than what your expected to be good at, even though those strengths are vital to society, they can't even prove those strengths because there's nothing in school that allows you to do that. It was the same in high school for me. My parents knew my intelligence, so did my teachers. But because i only got around 70% in school for the same reason above, it's all my fault.

This is why gang members have grown rapidly. I've met plenty over the years, I notice they think the same way. Same with guys in trades, guys that are former gang members or associates trying to clean up their lives and do what they originally should have done, but didn't because they were cast out of a system that rejected them for having different strengths, at least in my observation. No different than my aboriginal friends and family members, at least the male ones. This is also in my opinion why girls will do better on average than guys in school now. Guy's are more visual.

It's almost a 'suburban' vs 'street-sense' difference. the street-sense people are cast out as stupid, even though they have very useful strengths in different ways. And then we're all shocked as to why we lack trades people.

It's a bloody nightmare. It's destroyed many lives and will continue to do so until it's understood properly.


Street people (gang members) might not necessarily be stupid, but they are scum of the earth and as such should be cast out with vigor, zeal, and vast quantities of enthusiasm!
 
2012-12-02 06:41:18 PM  

Brontes: links136: Ed Willy: Actually, trying to fix the circle of poverty and bad home life is much harder for the government to do. Government and schools alone cannot fix the bad thinking patterns that trap people in a cycle of shiat jobs and poor decisions.

What, you think schools don't have any affect on thinking patterns?

Math class word problems should consist of: Jenny has a kid at 16 that costs $5000 in hospital bills. She has to pay $50 a day to feed and cloth the child. Her baby daddy makes $5.50 at McDonalds and works 30 hours a week. How much does their life suck? What if they had waited 10 years?


Your newsletter..... Please add me to your subscription list
 
2012-12-02 07:01:03 PM  

nmemkha: We need to return to actually teaching critical thinking and imparting knowledge rather than rote memorization to pass standardized tests.


Theoretically, that would be the way to go..Unfortunately, the rise or critical thinking would devastate the following special interests because eyes will be opened to obvious bullshiat!..

Politicians and lawmakers - They wouldn't be able to pull the wool over the eyes of 'critical thinkers'.
Clergymen - They'd lose all their customers
Lottery Corporations - 'nuff said.
The advertising industries and the broadcasting / publishing empires they support
Tabloids and other 'biased' news sources
Apple Computers (and any other business that puts trendiness, style and form over functionality and cost!) 

Think of the employment..
 
2012-12-02 07:12:21 PM  
I also have a bad habit of wording things terribly (maybe thats a disorder), so if you still don't understand what i'm trying to say, this would do a much better job, if you haven't seen it already.
 
2012-12-02 07:26:48 PM  

Alphakronik: Yes, let's laugh at a country with a better economy and a bigger GDP than ours for ideas that might actually work.


Since when was 2.7 trillion bigger than 15.1 trillion? Problems in Economics?
 
2012-12-02 07:52:04 PM  

Alphakronik: Yes, let's laugh at a country with a better economy and a bigger GDP than ours for ideas that might actually work.


Uh, wut? The per capita GDP of France is about 75% that of the United States. Unless Oregon is now a small Republic in Central Asia, what is this "ours" referring to?
 
2012-12-02 08:18:59 PM  
LOL, I am glad kids these days are experts without any need of practice. But I guess we need ditch diggers too.
 
2012-12-02 08:32:21 PM  

trappedspirit: LOL, I am glad kids these days are experts without any need of practice. But I guess we need ditch diggers too.


"what we're doing isn't working? Well lets do it twice as hard! That should work. fark change. Change is for pussies"
 
2012-12-02 08:33:35 PM  
I actually have homework I need to get to, so I'm skipping most of this thread, but personally I hate it with every fiber of my being. The only homework I enjoy is interesting projects with visuals, and sometimes research papers. Occasionally handouts can be helpful too, but mostly I spend so much time fretting about it and putting it off that I don't feel like I learn anything by the time I get around to doing it, because I'm in a rush. I'd be much happier to spend twice as much time in class, going over the stuff twice, rather than having to 'teach myself'.
 
2012-12-02 08:39:20 PM  

Fark_Guy_Rob: More and more it seem school is just day-care and the homework is meant to be the learning?

I've known medical students, veterinary students, and engineers who spend significantly less time in class than a 2nd grader. I'm not really sure what kids are doing in school all day, but I'm pretty sure it's not really learning in the traditional sense.

At most universities a 'full-time' student is one who will have '15-credit hours' and that should translate, roughly, into 15 hours in class, each week. That's roughly *three hours* per day. And this is for serious university types.


University classes go very fast and you will have to put in many more hours in study than the class time. Some classes will require 4 -5 hrs of study after class a day to be successful at it (I'm looking you Organic Chemistry!)
 
2012-12-02 08:46:00 PM  

4seasons85!: University classes go very fast and you will have to put in many more hours in study than the class time. Some classes will require 4 -5 hrs of study after class a day to be successful at it (I'm looking you Organic Chemistry!)


This.

I've lost count of the number of days I've spent basically 6 hours sleeping, a total 3 hours on lunch, dinner, transportation to and from uni, and the rest of the time sitting on a desk, juggling all kinds of books.

No homework is fine for a lot of people, but not those intending to finish a degree that actually requires you to know stuff.
 
2012-12-02 09:00:41 PM  

jst3p: links136: I'm considered by my teacher with 20 years of managing machine shops a genius in the field, am as good as anyone at doing the work,

In your field a genius is only as good as others at doing the work?


/just picking on you


For someone 1st year compared to veterans I would think so. Oh wait, we're in a world where we expect people to have 5 years experience, right of high school.

/I do word things terribly.
 
2012-12-02 09:45:00 PM  

4seasons85!: Fark_Guy_Rob: More and more it seem school is just day-care and the homework is meant to be the learning?

I've known medical students, veterinary students, and engineers who spend significantly less time in class than a 2nd grader. I'm not really sure what kids are doing in school all day, but I'm pretty sure it's not really learning in the traditional sense.

At most universities a 'full-time' student is one who will have '15-credit hours' and that should translate, roughly, into 15 hours in class, each week. That's roughly *three hours* per day. And this is for serious university types.

University classes go very fast and you will have to put in many more hours in study than the class time. Some classes will require 4 -5 hrs of study after class a day to be successful at it (I'm looking you Organic Chemistry!)



Yep. I don't miss those 4-problem homework assignments that take 20+ hours to do. Doesn't leave much time for anything else.

\graduate-level physics
\\ Jackson's E&M is a beast
 
2012-12-02 09:51:39 PM  

links136: This is my point exactly. Everything I tried to explain went right over your head. Native Americans have been hunters and trappers in their whole existence. This is true today. My Grandfather did it, my father did it, I have uncles and cousins that sill hunt and trap. We are people that work with our hands, our thinking hasn't changed. We never had books or writing, we hunted with our eyes and hands, besides the fact natives were behind because they had no trade routes with any other civilization and were isolated with the rest of the world.

My point is that when you look at a car, thats the physical part of it. The actual word car is an imaginary concept created to represent the physical part of it. This is why trades are disappearing. No one can even grasp the difference between a physical concept and imaginary one. You can't. If you were to show me a car, you would show me a physical car. Could you show me the word car? You can only say it.

The fact you don't understand this difference is exactly why trades are disappearing. They will continue to disappear until this is understood, like in germany. I'm not saying we have to be fair to trades people, i'm saying we have to identify them and teach them to their strengths. This is not done whatsoever.


Of course I understand the point you're trying to make. Hence my "Maybe you're advocating..." statement. You've just gone about it in a rather bizarre fashion, with the whole Native American / utopian tangent.

links136: I mean, you think construction is done with thoughts or your hands?


I sincerely doubt that you're in a position from which to lecture me on construction.
 
2012-12-02 10:16:42 PM  

FizixJunkee: Yep. I don't miss those 4-problem homework assignments that take 20+ hours to do. Doesn't leave much time for anything else.


Meh, wait till you get a job. It doesn't get any easier.  The trick is to enjoy solving the problems.
 
2012-12-02 10:54:28 PM  
I have scrolled through these answers, and notice a very common thing. This is fark, albeit FARKERS, claiming to be uneducated, jaded and often just flat out cynical.

Yet for the most part, the only misspellings are intentional. Some farkers don't capitalize, use proper grammar, or use punctuation.

However, most of us crotchety old farkers can communicate in a way that involves sentences, clear thoughts, and a wealth of sarcasm.

Ask your kid to actually spell a word. Throw Mississippi at them, on of the easiest words of all! If they can't find it on spell check, they are toast. Math is important, but communication- without it- we are hosed.

Homework is practice - practice makes perfect- or at least tolerable.....

No spell check when filling out a job application with a ball point pen....
 
2012-12-02 10:59:41 PM  
Homework is valuable if only in its effectiveness in teaching that prayer doesn't actually work. At all.
 
2012-12-02 11:10:50 PM  
Homework is a good tool; its not a relacement for quality instruction, but it supplements. Some things simply need reinforcement; grinding it out, repetitious working, memorization. Yes, that can be boring. Boo farking hoo. Deal with it. School is not for entertainment. It is not primarily for enjoyment; its for preparing youself to be useful, and not a lazy worthless oxygen theif.

From the article
"It's much more about, sit down and we'll fill your empty heads with our rather dull and old-fashioned knowledge."

Yes..that is what school is about. Pansies.
 
2012-12-02 11:42:14 PM  

RandomExcess: The problem is not assigning homework, it is grading it. If you cannot determine the appropriate grade based on in class performance (outside projects/term papers) then you are doing it wrong. So assign all the homework you want, and the student should do as much as they want, but grading it is for losers.


This - it's the grading that puts kids at a disadvantage.

The rich kids with worrywart parents far too often get perfect scores because it's their parents doing half the work, or at least spending time fixing it with their kids. Kids whose parents don't have the time can't do that and so the kids are handing in their own work.

Things done for an actual grade need to be done in school.

Anyway homework is supposed to be about the learning and diagnostics, figuring out what you need to study and doing some practice. If all the problems are easy and it really is trivial busywork for you, there's no point in doing it.

University homework is something else entirely, but most of those people don't live at home with Mommy finishing their assignments for them. Yes, people do homework in groups, but if that's done correctly by people who actually want to learn, that can be a good thing. People who just cheat, well, at some point they will fail the test, fail the project, or fail the job interview, so who cares?
 
2012-12-02 11:57:27 PM  

BigNumber12: Because the real world doesn't grade the outcome of a person's work, right? Who cares if the rocket detonates on the launchpad, or the patient dies on the operating table, as long as the worker felt good about having tried hard, right?


The real world is certainly nothing like school.

Results are tested, sure, but deadlines are generally negotiable (project timelines slip - that absolutely means you work your ass off, of course, but unlike school if there really IS a good reason for it to slip, you negotiate that). People work in teams. People reuse work (and this is actually encouraged). Assignments change on a moment's notice depending on conditions (patient has complications, etc). "Showing your work" is the most important part of the project half the time. Most projects you never start from scratch, you're starting from someone else's finish point - and when you're finished, you expect to hand it off to someone else again, so you're required to document the shiat out of it.

No one ever says you're not allowed to look at the manual when you get stuck. No one ever says you're not allowed to look at a programming reference, or google around for ideas. You memorize things that you really do use often, naturally.

Most importantly, you don't get to just "settle for the B and just turn in what you have half done because fark it" unless you intend to quit the job. You have to finish what you start.

Star students fresh out of university often have a pretty giant learning curve about just how the collaborative working world operates. Some adjust, some don't.
 
2012-12-03 01:13:19 AM  

FizixJunkee: 4seasons85!: Fark_Guy_Rob: More and more it seem school is just day-care and the homework is meant to be the learning?

I've known medical students, veterinary students, and engineers who spend significantly less time in class than a 2nd grader. I'm not really sure what kids are doing in school all day, but I'm pretty sure it's not really learning in the traditional sense.

At most universities a 'full-time' student is one who will have '15-credit hours' and that should translate, roughly, into 15 hours in class, each week. That's roughly *three hours* per day. And this is for serious university types.

University classes go very fast and you will have to put in many more hours in study than the class time. Some classes will require 4 -5 hrs of study after class a day to be successful at it (I'm looking you Organic Chemistry!)


Yep. I don't miss those 4-problem homework assignments that take 20+ hours to do. Doesn't leave much time for anything else.

\graduate-level physics
\\ Jackson's E&M is a beast


Oh man. I took Organic Chemistry from a professor that was a native of India and spoke poor English. It was terrible.
 
2012-12-03 01:23:28 AM  

vpb: "The French are discovering - to their horror - that their performance internationally has been declining over the last 10 years. The French actually are performing [worse] than the Americans in reading and science," he says.


In a few years they can run for public office in the US.
 
2012-12-03 01:27:36 AM  

Marcus Aurelius: If the teacher can't finish the job in school, then the school day needs to be extended. Take-home homework is mostly to punish the parents. I can see it for math and reading and possibly writing. All the rest of it is complete horseshiat.


Better practice on your 'Welcome to Walmart.' Take-home homework is to make you think through things, but considering that most kids spend their waking hours staring blankly into their phones homework won't help either. Stupidity is preprogrammed.
 
2012-12-03 01:31:48 AM  

Fark_Guy_Rob: More and more it seem school is just day-care and the homework is meant to be the learning?

I've known medical students, veterinary students, and engineers who spend significantly less time in class than a 2nd grader. I'm not really sure what kids are doing in school all day, but I'm pretty sure it's not really learning in the traditional sense.

At most universities a 'full-time' student is one who will have '15-credit hours' and that should translate, roughly, into 15 hours in class, each week. That's roughly *three hours* per day. And this is for serious university types.


you need to recognize that teaching on the university level is designed to incorporate at-home time, whether in the form of homework or studying. the general rule is that for every 1 hour of class time, students are expected to spend 2 hours at home studying or doing assignments.

1X + 2X, where X is 15 = 45 hours per week. This is more than a 9 to 5 job.

I always tell my students that college is a full time job and to, as much as possible, take on loans and find a way to go to school without having to work. Part of the population I teach is adult learners, men and women in their 30's and 40's, with families and full time jobs, who are taking 15 credits to earn a BA also. This _kills_ them.

And, yes, I do assign homework. And, yes, I try to make the assignments as engaging, worthwhile, and educational as possible. My students admitted that the only class they look forward to is mine. That while doing homework for their other classes (English, Music, etc), they'll take a break by doing my homework.
 
2012-12-03 02:05:17 AM  
Equality through hammer, ax, and saw?

/Hopefully not obscure
 
2012-12-03 02:07:38 AM  

Day_Old_Dutchie: nmemkha: We need to return to actually teaching critical thinking and imparting knowledge rather than rote memorization to pass standardized tests.

Theoretically, that would be the way to go..Unfortunately, the rise or critical thinking would devastate the following special interests because eyes will be opened to obvious bullshiat!..

Politicians and lawmakers - They wouldn't be able to pull the wool over the eyes of 'critical thinkers'.
Clergymen - They'd lose all their customers
Lottery Corporations - 'nuff said.
The advertising industries and the broadcasting / publishing empires they support
Tabloids and other 'biased' news sources
Apple Computers (and any other business that puts trendiness, style and form over functionality and cost!) 

Think of the employment..


It's kind of funny you think that, because highly educated people can still end up believing really stupid things.
 
2012-12-03 03:13:55 AM  

ApatheticMonkey: What I'm getting at here is that you need to spend time practicing a task, be it supervised time or not, in order to gain mastery of it. What's being proposed here, is that somehow these kids will miraculously learn what they need to in class alone.


Just like the swimmers? The question is really whether someone who hasn't learned something in a supervised class with professional help on hand is any more likely to learn it by working on their own with nobody to correct, guide or help them.

Fine for those learning musical instruments, where movements have to be acquired by muscle memory. But how many school subject contain small chunks which need to be learned the same way?
 
2012-12-03 03:26:36 AM  

links136: My point is that when you look at a car, thats the physical part of it. The actual word car is an imaginary concept created to represent the physical part of it.


Absolutely. You have to distinguish between your car the machine and your car the corporation. When your car was made, or imported, the government gave it a number. At the same time they created a shadow bank account in the name of its corporation, which is how US currency has been backed since the end of the gold standard. You are only eligible for speeding tickets and other traffic offences if you acknowledge this, so avoid doing so by making sure you always refer to "my Fiesta of the family Ford" or "my ::Tesla::Roadster::".

Nice to meet someone else here who reject sheeple-think and understands freecar on the road concepts.
 
2012-12-03 06:05:20 AM  

maggoo: Exactly, just like the concept of hard work paying back those who invest in it, and that those who make an effort are better rewarded than those who slack around.


So, no capitalism? I mean you're saying go by a system of occupy and use and labor income rather than a series of bullshiat excuses like interest and risk to give more wealth to the wealthy and allowing some tart to reap the rewards while sitting on his ass because he "owns" the land and production equipment that only the workers use and brings nothing but management which the workers can do themselves?
 
2012-12-03 06:21:07 AM  

orbister: links136: My point is that when you look at a car, thats the physical part of it. The actual word car is an imaginary concept created to represent the physical part of it.

Absolutely. You have to distinguish between your car the machine and your car the corporation. When your car was made, or imported, the government gave it a number. At the same time they created a shadow bank account in the name of its corporation, which is how US currency has been backed since the end of the gold standard. You are only eligible for speeding tickets and other traffic offences if you acknowledge this, so avoid doing so by making sure you always refer to "my Fiesta of the family Ford" or "my ::Tesla::Roadster::".

Nice to meet someone else here who reject sheeple-think and understands freecar on the road concepts.


All joking aside, I think I'm actually getting what he's saying. Some people are visual learners, some people are audio learners, and some are kinesthetic learners (tactile sensation). Similarly, some people are larks do their work best in the early mornings ~8:00AM, and some are night owls do work better at 6:00 PM. Despite these differences, we've organized the public school system to be useful primarily for audio-learning larks, leaving the visual, kinesthetic, and night-owl people mostly behind. When the school instead optimizes on a per-student basis, achievement can go up significantly. There's been actual scientific papers on this very subject.
 
2012-12-03 08:16:31 AM  

links136: LiberalEastCoastElitist: links136: So my learning disability is that i'm a visual thinker? Is that what you're saying? I'm simply better at using my hands and thinking in visual terms. It's not that I can't think in other ways, i'm just not nearly as effective at it, so I play to my strengths. Is that really a disorder, or just having different strengths and abilities?

Some would consider failing a test despite knowing the material because you can't recall names of items you've been working with for weeks a disorder, yes. No need to get butthurt, it just means you're weak in one or two areas.
.

I didn't fail them. I would get around 70%, which isn't as good as 98%. I AM weak in that area, I don't understand why thats a learning disorder, or the only example of knowledge and abilities. I'm considered by my teacher with 20 years of managing machine shops a genius in the field, am as good as anyone at doing the work, I just can't show it by remembering the names of tools on a piece of paper because i'm better at remembering the visual and practical aspect, and you know, actually doing the work.

Yet that way is the standard of showing knowledge and ability. That's my point. Alot of people are being overlooked because their strengths are different than what your expected to be good at, even though those strengths are vital to society, they can't even prove those strengths because there's nothing in school that allows you to do that. It was the same in high school for me. My parents knew my intelligence, so did my teachers. But because i only got around 70% in school for the same reason above, it's all my fault.

This is why gang members have grown rapidly. I've met plenty over the years, I notice they think the same way. Same with guys in trades, guys that are former gang members or associates trying to clean up their lives and do what they originally should have done, but didn't because they were cast out of a system that rejected them for having different strengths, at least in my observation. No different than my aboriginal friends and family members, at least the male ones. This is also in my opinion why girls will do better on average than guys in school now. Guy's are more visual.

It's almost a 'suburban' vs 'street-sense' difference. the street-sense people are cast out as stupid, even though they have very useful strengths in different ways. And then we're all shocked as to why we lack trades people.

It's a bloody nightmare. It's destroyed many lives and will continue to do so until it's understood properly.


Dude your problem isn't learning per se, it the worthless dolts in HR and government who are only good for geting offended and creating BS tests and rules to create justification for their jobs and separate people into categories through useless and arbitrary ways. Your teacher, knows you know your shiat, and your boss probably does too. That is all that should matter.
 
2012-12-03 08:17:51 AM  

Ed Willy: links136: Ed Willy: Actually, trying to fix the circle of poverty and bad home life is much harder for the government to do. Government and schools alone cannot fix the bad thinking patterns that trap people in a cycle of shiat jobs and poor decisions.

What, you think schools don't have any affect on thinking patterns?

Behavior patterns are much more difficult to work with. It takes models you can actually see, not abstract ideas


You know like a dad who is more than a sperm donating prison biatch.
 
2012-12-03 09:22:13 AM  
just need to tax the "wealth" students and spread the wealth around to those "unfortunate" students. Equitable distribution of grades.
 
2012-12-03 09:57:51 AM  

chaoticcrash: I have scrolled through these answers, and notice a very common thing. This is fark, albeit FARKERS, claiming to be uneducated, jaded and often just flat out cynical.

Yet for the most part, the only misspellings are intentional. Some farkers don't capitalize, use proper grammar, or use punctuation.

However, most of us crotchety old farkers can communicate in a way that involves sentences, clear thoughts, and a wealth of sarcasm.

Ask your kid to actually spell a word. Throw Mississippi at them, on of the easiest words of all! If they can't find it on spell check, they are toast. Math is important, but communication- without it- we are hosed.

Homework is practice - practice makes perfect- or at least tolerable.....

No spell check when filling out a job application with a ball point pen....


My kid can spell her name at 20 months. She will know how to write and speak well. Her mother is an avid reader of books and I read academic journals for fun still. She will have good reading habits. Of course, I look at parenting as bring my responsibility to make sure my kid is one less little dumbass running around.
 
2012-12-03 10:05:09 AM  

aesirx: Fark_Guy_Rob: More and more it seem school is just day-care and the homework is meant to be the learning?

I've known medical students, veterinary students, and engineers who spend significantly less time in class than a 2nd grader. I'm not really sure what kids are doing in school all day, but I'm pretty sure it's not really learning in the traditional sense.

At most universities a 'full-time' student is one who will have '15-credit hours' and that should translate, roughly, into 15 hours in class, each week. That's roughly *three hours* per day. And this is for serious university types.

you need to recognize that teaching on the university level is designed to incorporate at-home time, whether in the form of homework or studying. the general rule is that for every 1 hour of class time, students are expected to spend 2 hours at home studying or doing assignments.

1X + 2X, where X is 15 = 45 hours per week. This is more than a 9 to 5 job.

I always tell my students that college is a full time job and to, as much as possible, take on loans and find a way to go to school without having to work. Part of the population I teach is adult learners, men and women in their 30's and 40's, with families and full time jobs, who are taking 15 credits to earn a BA also. This _kills_ them.

And, yes, I do assign homework. And, yes, I try to make the assignments as engaging, worthwhile, and educational as possible. My students admitted that the only class they look forward to is mine. That while doing homework for their other classes (English, Music, etc), they'll take a break by doing my homework.


I disagree working 45-50 hours a week then taking 12-15 credits of college a week prepared me well for the rigors of adult life. Oh you need ne to work 16 hour days for a couple weeks because you let the accountants make personnel decisions, no problem. Oh my job is 6am to 5pm and I have to help the kids with their homework and check off on it. Yep got that too.
 
2012-12-03 10:15:17 AM  

Sim Tree: orbister: links136: My point is that when you look at a car, thats the physical part of it. The actual word car is an imaginary concept created to represent the physical part of it.

Absolutely. You have to distinguish between your car the machine and your car the corporation. When your car was made, or imported, the government gave it a number. At the same time they created a shadow bank account in the name of its corporation, which is how US currency has been backed since the end of the gold standard. You are only eligible for speeding tickets and other traffic offences if you acknowledge this, so avoid doing so by making sure you always refer to "my Fiesta of the family Ford" or "my ::Tesla::Roadster::".

Nice to meet someone else here who reject sheeple-think and understands freecar on the road concepts.

All joking aside, I think I'm actually getting what he's saying. Some people are visual learners, some people are audio learners, and some are kinesthetic learners (tactile sensation). Similarly, some people are larks do their work best in the early mornings ~8:00AM, and some are night owls do work better at 6:00 PM. Despite these differences, we've organized the public school system to be useful primarily for audio-learning larks, leaving the visual, kinesthetic, and night-owl people mostly behind. When the school instead optimizes on a per-student basis, achievement can go up significantly. There's been actual scientific papers on this very subject.


This! 10am to 6pm is my best time to work. Sad, not many jobs around here have that schedule.
 
2012-12-03 11:16:50 AM  

itazurakko: BigNumber12: Because the real world doesn't grade the outcome of a person's work, right? Who cares if the rocket detonates on the launchpad, or the patient dies on the operating table, as long as the worker felt good about having tried hard, right?

The real world is certainly nothing like school.

Results are tested, sure, but deadlines are generally negotiable (project timelines slip - that absolutely means you work your ass off, of course, but unlike school if there really IS a good reason for it to slip, you negotiate that). People work in teams. People reuse work (and this is actually encouraged). Assignments change on a moment's notice depending on conditions (patient has complications, etc). "Showing your work" is the most important part of the project half the time. Most projects you never start from scratch, you're starting from someone else's finish point - and when you're finished, you expect to hand it off to someone else again, so you're required to document the shiat out of it.

No one ever says you're not allowed to look at the manual when you get stuck. No one ever says you're not allowed to look at a programming reference, or google around for ideas. You memorize things that you really do use often, naturally.

Most importantly, you don't get to just "settle for the B and just turn in what you have half done because fark it" unless you intend to quit the job. You have to finish what you start.

Star students fresh out of university often have a pretty giant learning curve about just how the collaborative working world operates. Some adjust, some don't.



Yes, I'm an engineering major, so you've basically described a large part of what I do. Except for the "negotiable deadlines" bit, which is just funny.

I guess I don't see how any of that changes the fact that the real world does, in fact, grade your work, sometimes quite strictly, sometimes career-endingly strictly. Why would you want to spend a student's entire education teaching them that it won't?
 
2012-12-03 11:29:40 AM  

cptjeff: Or they can get that feedback instantly, directly tailored to what the students are having trouble with at any given moment.

I agree that some of this work is needed- I violently disagree with the contention that it has to be done at home. You've got three times the amount of class time as college professors do. If you have to keep repeating the same stuff without many in the class getting it, it's being utterly wasted, or at least it could be used much, much more efficiently.



I didn't forget about you, but I did start drinking once I got back inside.

Anyway, the point I was going to make is that, when compared to in-class work, homework has three advantages:

1) Working at home challenges students to power through the entire assignment as best they can, and seek out their own resources instead of just immediately raising their hand to get the teacher over to their desk.
2) Individual and class-wide analysis. The students will complete the assignment independently, as best they can, and then the teacher can, quite quickly, analyze the student's comprehension: "So-and-so got numbers 4, 7, and 12 incorrect, which shows that they're struggling with X, Y, and Z concepts." This style of rapid feedback will also give them a sense, very quickly, of class-wide trends, since the assignments are being reviewed one after another, and for the entire class. This is a much more reliable way of doing things, because...
3) Time efficiency. We have to face it, class sizes are growing, and it's simply not practical to spend 5-10 minutes working alongside each student on each lesson assignment, in addition to actually teaching the material. While the rest of the class sits around waiting. Particularly when so many kids are being taught that being disruptive and disrespecting the teacher and classroom environment are either "no big deal" or "funny" by their parents.
 
2012-12-03 11:49:45 AM  

BigNumber12: I guess I don't see how any of that changes the fact that the real world does, in fact, grade your work, sometimes quite strictly, sometimes career-endingly strictly. Why would you want to spend a student's entire education teaching them that it won't?


I wouldn't, and can't see where I've said that. But I don't think the current style of homework in K-12 schools is representative of the real world, is all. School is a very artificial place, and the incentives are not like the working world.

It's quite a rude awakening for a lot of people when they do their first project on the job and find out that it's nothing at all like projects in school, it's not like doing MPs, where your work is only yours and everything is neat and clean.

It's even further away from the idea of "do these 50 drills because, well, I want you to do them, even though they're trivial for you." Or to use the sports analogy, the whole point of drills is you drill what you don't know. You should concentrate on the problems that are hard for you, not only on "I need to get points for my GPA so it's good I can do these trivially."

Of course it's hard to do individualized assignments in a big class, and it's hard to get kids to do problems if they don't have that completely arbitrary reward of points, I suppose.

But when it comes to elementary school, which is what the article is about, the problem I personally have with grading homework (problems done at home) for anything other than completion is that rich kids with helicopter parents have their parents doing the work and it's not fair to ordinary kids who do their own work. It's also harmful (IMHO) because those kids learn that getting 100% is the main goal, rather than being able to do the assignment and/or find out what they need to work on.

If it's graded for quality it needs to be done in school so Mom and Dad are nowhere near it.

Done in school, a good teacher will not just give the answer to a question, but work through it with a kid.

Study halls might also be a good thing.
 
2012-12-03 12:26:42 PM  

orbister:
Just like the swimmers? The question is really whether someone who hasn't learned something in a supervised class with professional help on hand is any more likely to learn it by working on their own with nobody to correct, guide or help them.

Fine for those learning musical instruments, where movements have to be acquired by muscle memory. But how many school subject contain small chunks which need to be learned the same way?


For small kids, they can be left alone homework wise. Thier minds are developing in a way that they'll need the guidance. However, for the rest, homework shouldn't take the form of merely practicing for rote memory. Higher order thinking skills need to be involved in order for students to have a meaningful learning experience. And I think this is where the disconnect between our opinions is stemming from. Complex, engaging (but appropriate difficulty wise, as throwing them into the lions den straight away is a waste of everyone's time) work vs busywork as homework. Repetitive piecework really only needs to be used in a remedial setting when other approaches have failed.

And if you want to continue the music parallel, having a deeper understanding of a piece vs knowing how it's supposed to be played is the difference between playing with accuracy and playing with feeling as well (but students should be careful to avoid being a guitar wanker).
 
2012-12-04 12:42:29 AM  

BigNumber12: I guess I don't see how any of that changes the fact that the real world does, in fact, grade your work, sometimes quite strictly, sometimes career-endingly strictly. Why would you want to spend a student's entire education teaching them that it won't?


An engineering solution is 'graded', tho, on 'does it work well?'. Frequently, my classwork would be graded on a procedure-based rubric, instead of a results-based one, that had little or nothing to do with the actual material or even reality.

For example, in sixth grade, when solving the equation 2x = 1, sometimes the answer was one-half, and sometimes the answer was point-five, my math teacher insisted. If the other one was written down, it was WRONG, just as sure as if I'd put that the answer was Potato.

I never did learn which, and my math grade suffered significantly because of it. There was some unwritten procedure step where sometimes you reduced the division by two, and sometimes you didn't. And the sixth grade math teacher couldn't convey the dividing line with enough precision for the class to understand. Today, I do not see how there was any need for any time and trouble to be spent on that. Both symbols represent the same quantity. We could call the number smiley face if we wanted. Yet this was for some reason critically important to her that we learn when to use one half and when to use point five. Yet she lacked sufficient quality to effectively teach us why or how.

Epilogue: My seventh grade math teacher announced straight off that she didn't care if the answer was one-half or point-five, as long as it was correct. Apparently she had one too many students from Mrs.6thGrade's class try to divine from her the arcane secret.
 
2012-12-04 11:54:10 AM  

Sim Tree: For example, in sixth grade, when solving the equation 2x = 1, sometimes the answer was one-half, and sometimes the answer was point-five, my math teacher insisted. If the other one was written down, it was WRONG, just as sure as if I'd put that the answer was Potato.


Assuming that the problem wasn't specifically asking for the answer in fraction or decimal form, then the teacher was simply grading the work incorrectly. I don't think that should act as evidence that the practice of grading in general should be discontinued.
 
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