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Teacher Does Not Fulfill Her Responsibility, But Wins The Applause From Parents And Students

Teacher Does Not Fulfill Her Responsibility, But Wins The Applause From Parents And Students

As a former teacher, I’ve heard every excuse imaginable for why students were unable to produce the required homework assignment. From the cliché ‘the dog ate it’ to the very elaborate ‘the police raided my house last night and took my homework as evidence,’ I’ve heard it all.

In one Texas school, a classroom full of students were provided the best excuse for skipping homework for an entire school year — ‘my teacher doesn’t believe in homework.’ And, they were telling the truth.

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Brandy Young is a second-grade teacher who has decided to do away with assigning students homework for the year. On the first day of school, she sent each one of her little darlings home with a note explaining to parents that homework would not be assigned:

No_Homework_Letter
    Photo: Samantha Gallagher via Facebook

    The Great Debate

    The topic of homework has been hotly debated for decades. Is it practical, useful and necessary, or is it an antiquated practice that wastes the time of parents and robs students of their childhood? Then there are questions over how much homework should be assigned and how often, to which types of students and how old should students be before they are required to complete homework.

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    Brandy Young, in her letter to parents, eluded to the fact that research has been unable to definitively prove that homework improves student performance and overall achievement. And she is right. For every study that shows student improvement is correlated to homework, there is a counterexample.

    The National PTA and the NEA published a parent guide called Helping Your Child Get the Most Out of Homework.

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    It states, “Most educators agree that for children in grades K-2, homework is more effective when it does not exceed 10-20 minutes each day; older children, in grades 3-6, can handle 30-60 minutes a day; in junior and senior high, the amount of homework will vary by subject…”

    Research and multiple analyses show that practice assignments do improve scores on class tests at all grade levels. And, small amounts of homework may help elementary school students build study habits. However, these two groups agree that these suggestions are merely guidelines based on the evaluations of educators and that each student is an individual and has individual needs. This baseline does not–and should not–be sweepingly applied to every single student with no consideration of ability and developmental levels and learning style.

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    Even where a positive correlation is established, it is not clear whether homework helps students retain information for long periods of time. Experts opposing the idea of homework argue that the negative effects of homework can outweigh the positives. They believe it can lead to boredom with schoolwork; it can deny students access to leisure activities that also help teach important life skills. And all too often, parents can become too involved in their children’s homework — pressuring them and confusing them by using different instructional techniques than the teacher.

    Surprisingly positive response from parents

    Brandy Young has taken a bold step and shifted the paradigm when it comes to her second-grade class. And her efforts have been applauded by parents. Some took to Facebook and expressed their sentiments:

    no-hw-4-850x133
      Photo: Samantha Gallagher via Facebook
      no-hw-5-850x276
        Photo: Samantha Gallagher via Facebook

        In the end, whether you are a fan or homework or not, you must applaud this young teacher. She has won the respect and most importantly, the support of her parents. Educating children is a team effort, and while the teacher is the captain of the team, the parents and students are vital participants. If the whole team does not buy into the belief system, whatever techniques are employed will become void and ineffective. Ms. Young’s decision to cut the small amount of homework she would have assigned from the lives of her students is already paying big dividends.

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        Denise Hill

        Speech Writer/Senior Editor

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        Last Updated on June 8, 2018

        10 Harsh But True Illustrations that Show Our Changed Society

        10 Harsh But True Illustrations that Show Our Changed Society

        Let’s face it.  We are living in a digital age, and there is absolutely no turning back. One of the biggest influences on society these days is social media. It affects us both positively and negatively. Social media was originally designed for people to share interesting facets of their lives with their friends, but it has become so much more than what it intended to be. It is now a medium for information to pass around the globe. In many cases, people first learn about current events through Twitter or Facebook before hearing about them from conventional news sources.

        We also rely on technology for nearly everything we do. People these days seem as if they can’t go anywhere or do anything without their smartphones, tablets, or laptops. They need to be in constant contact with others via electronic devices.

        However, there is also a downside to be too connected to social media and electronic devices. We are too dependent on them, which make us oblivious to what we are doing to ourselves. Being too connected can have a negative effect on our lives and the society as a whole. Here are 10 true illustrations that show how our society is negatively impacted because of the use of technology.

        1. Facebook is eating away at your time.

        Facebook is eating away your time

          How much time do you usually spend each day on Facebook or other social networking sites? Is it hindering your productivity? Do you find yourself wasting time to a point where you don’t even know where it goes? If the answer is yes, Facebook might have eaten away at your time.

          2. We’ve become “Likeaholics.”

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          Likeaholic

            When you are posting something on Facebook, are you doing it just to see how many of your friends will give it the proverbial thumbs up? This illustration shows that some people are treating “Likes” on Facebook as if it was a drug they needed to inject into their bloodstreams.

            3. Our electronics have priority over our lives.

            priorities

              Given a choice between your dying phone battery or you dying, which will you choose? In this case, the man in this illustration chose to charge his phone over to sustain his own life. As a society, we need to be more careful of our priorities.

              4. Our devices are ruining intimacy.

              lack of intimacy

                Have you and your loved one ever spent time together where each of you is on your phone instead of communicating face-to-face with each other? Has society reached the point where we can’t even be intimate with each other without being on our phones at the same time?

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                5. Families aren’t spending quality time together.

                mother baking

                  Here is a mother making holiday cookies, but what are the kids doing? They are not making cookies with their mother. Instead, every one of them has their faces buried in their own electronic devices. Television used to be what parents use to babysit their kids. Now, it’s a tablet, phone, laptop or video game that does the job.

                  6.  We’d rather record someone than help them.

                  drowning

                    A lot is happening in this illustration. A black man is drowning and asking for help. One person has a gun pointed at him. The other person has their iPhone pointed at him and is recording the scene, but is not interested to help this man.

                    7. Society is sleeping, it’s sleeping its life away.

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                    sleeping your life away

                      Time is money. After we have wasted the long period of time on social media, we are losing the most valuable currency we have – our time in this world.

                      8.  Despite all the technology we have, we still want what someone else has.

                      wanting what someone else is having

                        There’s an old saying that goes, “The grass is always greener on the other side.” This illustration shows that despite all that we have, we are still not satisfied with our lives.

                        9. Sensationalism still sells.

                        free expression

                          With the information overload that exists today, the media still looks for sensationalism. Here’s a woman who feels she has something important to say, but the media only cares about her because she is naked. Would the news media still have microphones in front of her if she wasn’t standing there topless?

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                          10. In the end, with all of this, we are still killing the planet.

                          gun to mother earth

                            This last illustration argues that despite all of our technological gains, we are still polluting the earth as if we have a virtual gun pointed at Mother Nature. As we build bigger cities and higher technology, how much more damages can we continue to do before putting our lives at risk?

                            Featured photo credit: Michael Summers via flickr.com

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