It is very easy to answer ‘yes’ to the above question, especially when one is loaded with homework up to the neck. however, I will not say that homework should be, abolished. It is useful in many ways, I will say that homework should be given discreetly.
Every teacher ought to realize that other teachers are also giving homework. So if five different teachers come into the class and all of them give us homework, then we will have five different sets of homework to do.
It is already a full-time job concentrating on what each teacher tells us in class. So by the time we reach home, all we want to do is to flop into bed and take a nice nap. The nap normally is filled with dreams about unfinished homework and angry teachers. So more often than not, sleep is out of the question. After lunch, it is usually back to work trying to finish the assignments before evening comes and we go out to play for a while.
However, the homework cannot be done in one sit-Ling. This especially so when we get stuck in a mathematics problem and can see no way through. So atter dinner it is back to work once again to complete the homework and try to do some studying as well. Sometimes the going gets so overwhelming that the only sane thing left to do is to quit and do something else, like watching television or playing with the computer.
This year, fortunately, most of our teachers are very understanding. They realize that we are already under pressure to do well in the coming SPM examinations. So they give us a minimum amount of homework. Our geography teacher is the best. He finds out from us first whether we have other homework to do before he gives us any. if he feels we are overloaded already he just shrugs his shoulders and says Okay-lah no homework today.’ Bless him for his kindness.
Surprisingly though his easygoing attitude does not cause us to deteriorate in geography. On the contrary, we are all above average in the subject. It could be that because we feel no pressure, we can do our work well and !earn better thus reducing the need for ridiculous and boring homework. As far, as geography is concerned, we have no problems with homework.
Mathematics is an entirely different matter. Our teacher believes in grinding us with as many problems as possible. I appreciate the fact that practice does make perfect in mathematics. However, I wish that he wou!d take it easy a little bit so that we do not feel so tense and overworked. It is necessary to do homework in mathematics. It is unnecessary to do excessive amounts of it. This is where the discretion of the teacher is the most important. But who am I to comment on what is considered discreet or not? it is totally up to the teacher. It is indeed ridiculous and boring to be solving mathematics problems all the time. My younger brother swears he can hear my brain clicking when I am doing the sums.
There are a few students in my class who have more or less given up on mathematics. I suppose the strain has taken its toll on them. They are simply not bothered anymore. They just sit quietly every time they are chastised by the fuming teacher for not doing the homework. Inevitably they fail every test we get. They show no concern at all for the results. The teacher has given up on them now. He ignores them as much as possible. I wonder how the students really feel about the teacher underneath their assumed silence. I wonder how the teacher really feels about them.
Doing homework is never a pleasant affair. If the volume of homework is manageable then they can be done efficiently and quickly. In this way, we do learn from our labor. If the volume is overwhelming then we. do not learn anything except that we are simply fed up. I believe then that we should not abolish homework completely. The best thing to do is for the teacher to seriously consider the student’s welfare before any homework is given. Homework should aid the students in learning. It should not do the opposite. Like food, if taken in moderate quantities,- it nourishes: if taken in excessive amounts, it kills.
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