Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day…

…For Teaching ELL, ESL, & EFL

The Best Resources For Learning About Homework Issues

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'Homework' photo (c) 2008, Sean - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/

David Shenk at The Atlantic has a good, short article titled Does Homework Work?. He includes several excellent links to good pieces written about the topic, and ends with this:

“But it seems the time has come for all parents to revisit this subject with considerable skepticism.”

His article prompted me to review a number of other resources on the topic that I’ve bookmarked, and thought that a quick “The Best…” list might be useful to readers and to me.

I’ve never delved too deeply into the subject, and have generally shied away from giving it except for a regular assignment of reading a book for 1/2 hour each night — whatever book students want to read. I do give other “homework,” particularly in my ESL classes, including students writing a weekly journal about their lives and an individual dictionary where they identify four new words they’ve learned that week. However, I usually give them ample time to finish it in class.

You might also be interested in The Best Posts On The “Flipped Classroom” Idea.

Here are my choices for The Best Resources For Learning About Homework Issues:

Of course, David Shenk’s  Does Homework Work? article, which also contains some great links to thoughtful pieces.

The Place of Homework in the 21st Century at Langwitches.

Practice, Practice, Practice (Or: Homework, Homework, Homework?)
from the ASCD Inservice Community Blog.

Homework: How Much is Too Much? from National Public Radio.

Dealing With Missing Homework
by John Norton from Teacher Magazine (free registration required).

Alfie Kohn has written “Rethinking Homework.”

Dr. Kathy Vatterott has created a website called The Homework Lady, and you can read an EdWeek interview with her here. She is the author of Rethinking Homework: Best Practices That Support Diverse Needs (ASCD, 2009).

End Homework Now is an article that appeared in Educational Leadership magazine.

Forget Homework is from Slate.

To hear some thoughtful differing perspectives, check-out:

The Weak Case Against Homework by Jay Matthews at The Washington Post. That column has some interesting quotes from Deborah Meier.

ASCD’s Inservice blog recently revisited a 1985 article titled Homework’s Powerful Effects on Learning. The comments by educators on the post are very interesting reading.

Five Hallmarks of Good Homework is a very good article in this month’s issue of Educational Leadership. It’s written by Cathy Vatterott.

Show Us What Homework’s For is an article in Educational Leadership interviewing teenagers about their perspectives on homework.

I’ve written a post titled “Sensible Homework Advice.”

Homework For English Language Learners

New Study Says Homework Has No Impact…Except In Math

Homework: The useful and the useless is by Valerie Strauss at The Washington Post.

Three Intriguing Articles On Homework

Alfie Kohn wrote this letter to The New York Times about homework.

Why I Don’t Assign Homework is from Dan Meyer.

Homework or Not? That is the (Research) Question is from District Administration.

Five Reasons I don’t Assign Homework is by Mark Barnes.

Why should I bother with this homework? is by Chad Evans.

Alternatives To Homework: A Chart For Teachers

Quote Of The Day: “Why Paying Kids to Do Homework Can Backfire”

When Homework is a Waste of Time is from TIME.

Larissa’s Languages shares some good ideas in Homework is..Fun!

Homework is from the British Council, and offers some very good ideas for ELL teachers.

AL NBCT Network 21st Century Homework Success is a PowerPoint presentation by Rick Wormeli.

Experimenting with English (Part 2) – Activities for learners to do outside the classroom [26 and counting!] is another excellent post by Lizzie Pinard.

Adam Simpson – Homework: Should we give it or not? is a useful post at the British Council.

Katherine Bilsborough – Taking the stress out of homework: 5 tips and 5 tasks is from The British Council.

Smart Homework: Can We Get Real? is by Rick Wormeli at Middleweb.

Smart Homework: How to Manage & Assess It is by Rick Wormeli. Smart Homework: 13 Ways to Make It Meaningful is also by Rick Wormeli.

Feedback and other suggestions are welcome.

If you found this post useful, you might want to look at previous “The Best…” lists and also consider subscribing to this blog for free.

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Author: Larry Ferlazzo

I'm a high school teacher in Sacramento, CA.

2 Comments

  1. Since you cite a couple of Kohn-related pieces, here is a piece that accuses him of misrepresenting the research:
    http://www.marzanoresearch.com/documents/ResponseToKohn.pdf

    And this is informative too: http://www.marzanoresearch.com/documents/GSASR_HomeworkArticle.pdf

  2. Pingback: The role of homework in education « Leetl's Weblog

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