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Too Much Homework, Too Little Time

It's all over the news: kids are spending a lot of time on homework. And, according to some, it's way too much. With the current emphasis on high-stakes testing, educators are trying to do more with less, which can result in an overabundance of schoolwork outside of school. Some critics say there is no evidence to suggest that homework is helpful to student achievement; on the contrary, too much of it can overwhelm students and cause them to disengage. Others, however, claim that homework is necessary and helpful, designed so students can practice the concepts taught in class, build good study habits, and reflect on their own learning.

As an 8th grade student who is in advanced classes, I think that homework is the cause of my depleting grades. Now, you’re probably going to think that I’m like any other kid in middle school that hates homework and that to even spend another second reading this will be a complete waste of time, right? Even so, just hear me out because I have several reasons that might just change your mind.

I have thousands of assignments every week; most of them homework assignments. As a result, I’m cascaded with homework every day, causing me to stay up until 11 o’clock at night more often than not. Obviously, this is a threat to my health as a developing teenager. It could stunt my growth, and result in fatigue and stress because everyone knows that no good sleep leads to no good grades. Even if I were to go to bed at a decent time, my homework wouldn’t be finished. Either way is a couldesack at the end of a road.

Stress is very unhealthy for growing teens and statistics show that 29% of 13-year-old students report spending 2 hours or more on homework daily in the U.S. Isn’t that a bit much? More homework means more stress. Stress can cause many things including: lack of sleep, slipping grades, fatigue, unhealthy eating habits, depression, and many more other factors. A teen should not have to face depression at such a young age.

So why do teenagers still have so much homework?

One of the answers to that is that teachers often have children covering material at home by themselves that they do not discuss during school time at all. Of course, the teacher's reasoning for this is that there aren't enough hours in the day and he/she wants to cover more territory on a certain subject. But being taught how to do something by a piece of paper just isn’t the same as being taught by an actual human being. The teacher can explain things a different way if someone doesn’t grasp how to do something or they can respond to questions about the subject for better learning.

I couldn’t even count how many kids just take the easy way out and disengage from the homework given at my school. They refuse to do homework and it’s lowering their grades. But I can’t blame them because I ask myself on a daily basis why I don’t just quit already and join the rest of the crowd.

I could actually have a life then instead of doing homework all day. I could participate in extra curricular activities like I used to when I participated in lacrosse but now I can’t because my grades are slipping due to not finishing homework. I could do fun things instead of homework because it keeps me cooped up inside like a prisoner in a jail cell and I hate it!

Statistics even show that kids who participated in an extra curricular activity have less stress. The only thing is, is that they have less time for homework too. Homework takes away all of my free time to spend with friends and family; where I can just forget about all of my worries for an hour or two.

The amount of homework that teachers give sometimes is ridiculous and unnecessary. Homework can cause stress, depression, lower grades, and less time to do extra curricular activities or hang out with friends, so teachers, could you please not get so excited about homework next time?

Join the Discussion

This article has 179 comments. Post your own now!

majesticgoldenrose said...
Sept. 12, 2013 at 10:25 pm
I remember when I was able to go to sleep around midnight. Now, in 9th grade, I'm up to 2 or 3 sometimes. And who said "6 or more hours"? I get off the bus about 3:30, and I start at 4 taking only 2 half hour breaks (shower, dinner) That adds up to more like 9 or 10, to me.
sunshine boo replied...
Nov. 25, 2013 at 11:17 am
well thats exactly what happend to  me  
justin01 replied...
Jan. 15, 2014 at 1:53 pm
me to i whish i could sleep
justkiddinguniversity said...
Jul. 26, 2013 at 10:27 pm
i TOTALLY agree with this because this was me and probably will be me this year in 9th grade. Great job.
inspiredpassion08This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
Jun. 2, 2013 at 2:25 pm
I agree completely with your esaay. I think that teachers should give us homework in little amounts, each assignment taking about 15 minutes to do for each class. For instance, say you have 7 periods, you would only have about two hours of hw- rather than 6 or more. Teachers should be the ones teaching, not the homework itself.
summercn11 said...
May 30, 2013 at 9:08 am
It is a delight to hear from a teenager, who is in the same state of despair like me, expressing his misery in the well-written essay.  In our school, heaps of homework are assigned everyday, tests (of multiple subjects) are held weekly.  Frankly, I spend no less than 2 hours doing homework and 3 hours for revision on a daily basis.  Under the burden of having so much homework, I simply have no time to join extra-curricular activities, take up new hobbies, and needless to say, a &... (more »)
Shanna. said...
May 28, 2013 at 12:25 am
Im going through this now.

I decided to go on this site because i'm literally crying while doing my homework at such a late time ( It's 12:19 here) Due to my loaction I have to wake up at 5am to get to school ( Already have less then 5 hours to sleep ) I always wonder.... Why not go to to bed...  and I'm not crying because I'm sad...

Oh no no no. I'm crying because thats my body's way to signal me to go to bed. I'm stressed out emotional... (more »)
clairemarie replied...
Nov. 11, 2013 at 12:12 am
All that you guys are saying is so true. I'm a freshman with about half normal classes and half advanced classes.  I'm also in sports that will last two and a half hours after school ends.  By the time I get home I eat and will start my homework as soon as I'm done, around 6:30 pm.  I am constantly staying up until 1, 2, or 3 am doing homework NONSTOP.  Considering I have to wake up at 5 am, that gives me 2-4 hours of sleep every night.  I will admit i have h... (more »)
Dirty Dan said...
May 21, 2013 at 11:02 am
Im in 8th grade and i get all A's and B's i hate homework. I play football, baseball, and basketball, that's year round and homework is very stressfull. After a late game i barely have anytime to do it. It stinks  
Emiduck said...
Mar. 27, 2013 at 10:06 pm
I understand completely! I'm a sophomore in high school in all honors classes and a college math class and I feel like I spend ALL of my time on homework. Once I got home from school at 3:30, immediately sat down and got to work, and didn't go to bed until 3 am. That's 12 hours! I have not time for anything else. When I do make time for my family, I spend it worrying about how much homework I'll have to do to make up for the time I'm spending with them. It's really unheal... (more »)
Jillzy123 said...
Mar. 5, 2013 at 1:41 am
The author of this article I agree with completely. I'm a 6th grader who stays up until 11:00 P.M.or 12:00 A.M. to write a 3 - page essay everyday. Why? My writing teacher believes it will "awaken our writing potential", well guess what I have to say to that? It's worthless, I still don't know why I bother for HW anymore, it's confusing. I look at my grades, and ever since I got my writing teacher, my grades have been falling. A's to B's. By the time I'm fin... (more »)
Anthony said...
Mar. 4, 2013 at 8:55 pm
I find it a little funny that around 6-9 hours of school isn't     enough. You are very right.
Let's stop hw!!! said...
Feb. 27, 2013 at 10:58 pm
I mean, i had to quit baseball, football, fun, and freetime. They hold us captive untill 3:50!!! Its time we make a stand!!! It takes me an average of 4hr 30min just because of homework! It makes no cents.
Maryn said...
Feb. 26, 2013 at 11:13 pm
I couldn't agree more. I'm in ninth grade, and I'm in the exact same situation. Last year I loved school and got a normal amount of school, but this year I stupidly decided to go to a fancy, overachiever high school, and it is utter and absolute hell. The cycle of school-homework-sleep never ends, and I'm trying to find a school to transfer to because if these are supposed to be the best years of my life, I want out. I wish I could give you advice, but I'm seeking some myself... (more »)
Mamonde This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Feb. 26, 2013 at 11:14 am
As a high school student living in Korea... we study practically at least 10 to 14 hours a day. Now I've got a LOT to say about too much studying... ;)
sallysunshine said...
Jan. 16, 2013 at 7:08 am
these are wonderful essays and introductions!!!
Häashia.EXE said...
Jan. 3, 2013 at 9:40 pm
It's quite frustrating yes, specially when it comes to proyects and special homeworks. I may not be going to school anymore, but one of the reasons that made me quit academically and that made me fail was the homework issue [despite the fact that I as well failed 7th due to the same caus and to an emotional disbalance which instead of being referred to a specialist I was sent to court in the state of Ohio] . It's very sad that this is being done to us. And.... according to other friend... (more »)
Piper Rain said...
Nov. 30, 2012 at 12:16 am
I'm also an 8th grader taking advanced classes, and let me tell you, I'm living a complete hell right now. I used to be the girl who would 24/7 be like, "YES! SCHOOL!!! I'm so excited, I want to learn, see my friends, talk to me teacher, YAY!" I used to love every teacher, every class and subject, and just love school so much. Now? I'm almost at the point where I'm just gonna stop and wing everything. I'm almost at the point where I don't care about gettin... (more »)
kimkim said...
Nov. 1, 2012 at 12:01 pm
this article , is right on some things but you missed something , email me?  
El0ise123 said...
Oct. 12, 2012 at 11:17 am
I get 3-6 hours of homework a night and feel depressed constantly... The quality of my work is slipping and my teacher wants me to attend extra classes which I dont have time for... Please help me, I never get any spare time and all I want is to forget about my homework...
kobe replied...
Jan. 17, 2013 at 8:22 am
i got same situation with u too. i recommend u to quit school and live a better life, like i am now.
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