Hey, Mom and Dad: How Much Homework Is Too Much For Grade-School Kids?

Parents, Patch wants to hear from you on the questions that get families talking. This week we're wondering: How much homework is appropriate to be sending home with grade-school students?

Welcome to "Hey, Mom and Dad"—a weekly feature in which we ask our Facebook fans to share their views on parenting. We're starting off with a question we posed last week on the Patch Facebook pages.

Fall is here and your child is no doubt getting to know their new teacher and adjusting to the demands of a new school year. But with most students also juggling a myriad of extracurricular activities, school isn't the only thing on their plate.

How much homework is too much for a grade-school student?

Take a look at what people had to say and join the conversation in the comments section.

Jen Baxley Sunleaf: I would say no more than 30 to 45 minutes. My boys don't get home until 3:50, they do homework, some days baseball practice and every kid needs some playtime and then if course dinner and family time! Homework is important, but so is family and individual time. Too much homework after being in school for 6 hours can burn the kids out and not do as we'll as they should. — Batavia Patch Facebook

Tammy Churchill Pesenti: My son is in 3rd grade does 1-2 hrs per night depending, but he has advanced math and I do require the 30 minute per night of reading as 'suggested' by the teacher and additional work on the online resources suggested to compliment the work that is sent home. It helps reinforce what they are learning so he feels like he has the skill mastered and is ready to move forward to the next level. — Elmhurst Patch Facebook

Laurie Brennan: We have had an hour or more on most days since second grade. Between math flashcards, practice math tests, practice spelling (all things I have to help with), plus reading and any daily homework from the teacher, we are happy to be done in under an hour!! We have a good healthy snack after school, then get to work. It isn't too bad though. As long as I have a good attitude about it, the kids seem to as well. — Geneva Patch Facebook

Jessica Moran Rench: I believe kids homework should be to go home and PLAY. Then read a bit before bed. Homework is for the birds. — Glen Ellyn Patch Facebook

Michelle Thompson: They have school all day. They should not have homework. Kids need downtime. Kids have activities after school and because they have so much homework they r not getting enough sleep. Kids need balance. Hours of school is enough for one day!!! — Lisle Patch Facebook

Melissa Carson Zdenovec: School comes first, before sports, but more than an hour at that age is too much. — Naperville Patch Facebook

Krista Oleksiak Lipnisky: I give my 4th graders about 45 min a night...and then they must read each night for 30 min. :) — St. Charles Patch Facebook

Austin Norton: I'm homeschooled. All my work is homework! — Wheaton Patch Facebook

So what's your take? Tell us in the comments. 

Rick Nagel September 25, 2012 at 02:29 PM
One Facebook commenter said the rule of thumb is 10 minutes per grade level—at least for the grade-school years. It really shouldn't be more than an hour, but I can understand why it's hard to orchestrate at the middle school and high school level, when each student has multiple teachers.
Lisa Kennedy September 26, 2012 at 03:43 AM
I don't think there is enough time for kids to be kids. We didn't have hours of homework when I was a kid. If the teachers are actually teaching (and they should be since we pay a fortune in taxes) then homework should be minimal (30 minutes total per day if that ) unless there is a small project or they have to study for a test. And truthfully if your kids are paying attention in school then it shouldn't take too long to review for a test.
Bailey leonard April 11, 2013 at 07:03 PM
I'm in 6th grade and I like never get homework
JanS April 11, 2013 at 07:22 PM
Homework is necessary to teach self discipline and because not all students work at the same pace. Memorizing math facts and spelling words, and doing projects will always require homework. However, especially at the elementary level, homework should be kept to a minimum. Children learn through play and family activities. Parents are responsible for the raising of the whole child. Teachers are responsible for their academic education. Parents and teachers must work together in order to provide the best for all children.


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