As a teacher, I have reviewed much of the research on the topic of homework. The most comprehensive study, by Duke University professor Dr. Harris Cooper, does show do my homework a correlation between completed homework and academic success. This was most pronounced with older children, but was also true for our younger school-age students.
If you find that homework time consistently far exceeds the general rule of 10 minutes per grade level, discuss this with your child’s teacher. They believe it fosters a sense of responsibility and promotes academic achievement. They note that homework provides valuable review and practice for students while giving teachers feedback on areas where students may need more support.
It can be beneficial to involve parents in homework when young children are experiencing problems in school. Older students and students doing well in school have more to gain from homework when it promotes independent learning. Three types of studies have been used to examine the relationship between homework and academic achievement. One type compares students who receive homework with students who receive none. Generally, these studies reveal homework to be a positive influence on achievement. However, they also reveal a relationship between homework and achievement for high school students that is about twice as strong as for junior high students.
Although homework is usually undesired, it encourages better study habits, and discourages spending time in front of the TV. Homework can be seen as another extracurricular activity, and many families already invest a lot of time and money in different clubs and lessons to fill up their children’s extra time. Just like extracurricular activities, homework can be fit into one’s schedule.
While the act of completing homework has benefits in terms of developing good habits in students, homework must prove useful for students so that they buy in to the process and complete their assignments. If students feel homework is a useless component of their learning, they will skip it—and miss out on the major benefits, content and otherwise, that homework has to offer. Data from a nationwide sample of elementary school students show that parental involvement in homework can improve class performance, especially among economically disadvantaged African-American and Hispanic students.