By Dr. Alana Bell
The preliminary results of our homework surveys for students and parents/guardians offer an interesting window into our community’s experience of the learning that happens outside of school hours. We sent the homework survey to all families from Grades 1-12 and to students from Grades 7-12. We received 51 responses to the parent/guardian homework survey and 60 responses to the student survey. While we continue to analyze the results, here are some of our initial findings:
The majority of parents surveyed (46.94%) felt their child had just the right amount of homework. 32.65% of families responded that their child had too much homework, and 20.41% said their child did not have enough. By comparison, 76.27% of students felt they had too much homework, and 23.73% said they had just the right amount. It is perhaps no surprise that none of our students responded that they did not have enough.
Our students are highly motivated when it comes to completing their own homework. 46% of parents reported that their daughter is always self-motivated when it comes to homework, 40% said their daughter is sometimes self-motivated. Only 14% of families reported that their daughter is seldom self-motivated.
As we expected, in our community homework can interfere with family time and is linked to stress. Approximately 92% of our students reported that homework interfered with family time sometimes or always. 95% of students indicated that they found homework stressful. While parents generally supported their daughters’ sense that homework was connected to stress (74% saw a connection between homework and their daughter’s stress level; while 26% felt there was no connection), they were less likely to feel that it interfered with family time, with 42% reporting that this was seldom the case.
Finally, the majority of both students and parents understand the purpose of homework assignments some or all of the time.
As we plan for the fall, we will continue to examine and modify Linden’s homework policies and practices in light of current educational research and the needs of The Linden School community.