There has recently been some chatter on Twitter about the value of homework. I doubt that neither Twitter nor the magical efforts of meta-analysis will resolve this issue because there are four types of homework and the effect will depend upon the type.
1. Completely useless homework
This involves things like ‘finish your write-up’ or ‘complete your poster’ and will not be checked by the teacher either at all, or until two or three weeks have passed. It will have been set to meet the requirements of a homework schedule or because time has run out in class. Some particularly diligent children will complete it, but all they will potentially gain from the process is fortitude.
2. Mostly useless homework
These are the kind of unstructured tasks that some students will gain a great deal from but that others will complete in a superficial way, if at all. They are…
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