Guest Blogger: A Seventh-Grader Speaks Out

Edward, a twelve-year-old seventh-grader from Las Vegas, has been writing to me with his thoughts about homework. He is a “wizard on the computer,” plays viola, and would be taking advanced classes except that he was reassigned to regular classes because he wasn’t completing all of his homework. The other day, Edward sent me an email outlining all of his assignments that evening:

20 Min. on reading a book for reading. (Required)
Plus 3 Chapters on a Wrinkle in Time novel work and read. About 50 Min.
Approximately 30 Min. on Math.
Approximately 15 Min. on English homework.
Approximately 20 Min. on Science homework.
Approximately 1 hour and 28 Min. on Regular reading.
Approximately 20 Min. on Orchestra. (Required)
About 3 and 1/2 on homework.
I will start on 4:00 P.M. because I need to eat and have little time to myself.
Sundown is 7:10 and will be dark. No time to go outside.

Edward has posted a petition to stop homework. He really wants other students to sign it so please spread the word.

The Problems with Homework
by Edward, seventh-grade student, Las Vegas, Nevada

I am a Middle School Student tired of homework. I know, school is very important. Its a gift. But, homework is changing it all. Right know, I’m still doing my homework. Its about 9:20 P.M. right now. I’m not finish yet! School is very important. But, if we don’t get enough sleep, we don’t pay attention in class because we need more sleep! Last night, I got only 6 hours of sleep. Less than an average adult. And we don’t even go to work yet!

I don’t finish my homework all the time. We have lunch period to try to finish all are homework. But what if people copy each other? It does not have any benefit! Hay, I sometimes do it to because I am so desperate to not get an 0 or F. I don’t like it. Right now, I have almost all C’s. I check my grades and most of the things that pull me down where homework! We don’t even have time to do extra curricular activities! Or, talk to are friends! We need time to are self. I am a bright student. But homework is pulling me down!

Stress is always a problem mostly for adults. But now, its a problem for us students! Homework is a “Health Problem.” Sleep. Exercise. Socialize. Stress. Anxiety. We are getting less Sleep and Exercise, but more Stress and Anxiety.

So, homework is a problem. Research everywhere is telling that. So, how do we stop it? Talk to your friends, teachers to sign this petition. And, don’t forget to tell your parents too. Spread the word. Your Myspace, forum, website, or something. Thank you using your time to read this. Here is the petition.

2 thoughts on “Guest Blogger: A Seventh-Grader Speaks Out

  1. Get smarter, during the summer, have determination and heart for school, do it right away once you get home. Well, for what i know the smarter you are the more easier the homework would get. Then if you do the homework right away and get it done you have the rest of the free time to yourself. That’s what alot of students do…as i see…they are like mindless people caught into school so much….but o well. One can achieve anything if they try hard. But for me i am lazy =.=

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  2. This is the overall iontoductirn for Common Core for Grade 1 Math In Grade 1, instructional time should focus on four critical areas: (1)developing understanding of addition, subtraction, and strategies foraddition and subtraction within 20; (2) developing understanding of wholenumber relationships and place value, including grouping in tens andones; (3) developing understanding of linear measurement and measuringlengths as iterating length units; and (4) reasoning about attributes of, andcomposing and decomposing geometric shapes.Doesn’t sound too bad . This is that iontoductirn broken down into discrete skills Represent and solve problems involving addition and subtraction.1. Use addition and subtraction within 20 to solve word problems involvingsituations of adding to, taking from, putting together, taking apart,and comparing, with unknowns in all positions, e.g., by using objects,drawings, and equations with a symbol for the unknown number torepresent the problem.22. Solve word problems that call for addition of three whole numberswhose sum is less than or equal to 20, e.g., by using objects, drawings,and equations with a symbol for the unknown number to represent theproblem.Understand and apply properties of operations and the relationshipbetween addition and subtraction.3. Apply properties of operations as strategies to add and subtract.3 Examples:If 8 + 3 = 11 is known, then 3 + 8 = 11 is also known. (Commutative property ofaddition.) To add 2 + 6 + 4, the second two numbers can be added to makea ten, so 2 + 6 + 4 = 2 + 10 = 12. (Associative property of addition.)4. Understand subtraction as an unknown-addend problem. For example,subtract 10 – 8 by finding the number that makes 10 when added to 8.Add and subtract within 20.5. Relate counting to addition and subtraction (e.g., by counting on 2 toadd 2).6. Add and subtract within 20, demonstrating fluency for addition andsubtraction within 10. Use strategies such as counting on; making ten(e.g., 8 + 6 = 8 + 2 + 4 = 10 + 4 = 14); decomposing a number leading toa ten (e.g., 13 – 4 = 13 – 3 – 1 = 10 – 1 = 9); using the relationship betweenaddition and subtraction (e.g., knowing that 8 + 4 = 12, one knows 12 – 8= 4); and creating equivalent but easier or known sums (e.g., adding 6 +7 by creating the known equivalent 6 + 6 + 1 = 12 + 1 = 13).Work with addition and subtraction equations.7. Understand the meaning of the equal sign, and determine if equationsinvolving addition and subtraction are true or false. For example, whichof the following equations are true and which are false? 6 = 6, 7 = 8 – 1,5 + 2 = 2 + 5, 4 + 1 = 5 + 2.8. Determine the unknown whole number in an addition or subtractionequation relating three whole numbers. For example, determine theunknown number that makes the equation true in each of the equations 8 +? = 11, 5 = ???? – 3, 6 + 6 = ????.Number and Operations in Base Ten 1.NBTExtend the counting sequence.1. Count to 120, starting at any number less than 120. In this range, readand write numerals and represent a number of objects with a writtennumeral.Understand place value.2. Understand that the two digits of a two-digit number represent amountsof tens and ones. Understand the following as special cases:a. 10 can be thought of as a bundle of ten ones — called a “ten.”b. The numbers from 11 to 19 are composed of a ten and one, two,three, four, five, six, seven, eight, or nine ones.c. The numbers 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80, 90 refer to one, two,three, four, five, six, seven, eight, or nine tens (and 0 ones).What it is not is recognizing patterns in a series, even & odd numbers, counting by fives etc. Tell me that forcing young children, five year olds to seven year olds, to sit still for six to eight hours so that they can practice doing worksheets of math when they do not even have the abstract thinking abilities necessary to understand what the number on that worksheet stands yet is a good idea This way, when kids encounter the scary variables in 8th or 9th grades they are going to have math anxiety!

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