How much homework is too much for children?

Homework is needed because children need to practice to develop the skills that they are exposed to at school, but can it get a bit too much?

Too many of us know the feeling of burnout from being overworked, and unfortunately, it seems children are experiencing this too, as their school workload is above their development level.

Zain Johnson spoke to the former head of the Wits School of Education, Professor Mary Metcalfe, about a reasonable amount of homework to expect of our children and how to help them manage it.

According to Metcalfe, the one important purpose of homework is to help children develop a sense of independence and learn to complete tasks on their own.

In addition to this, homework is also needed because they need to practice to develop the skills that they are exposed to at school.

So, while there is a need for homework, many children are overwhelmed as they have experienced a learning loss as a result of COVID-19 and are desperately trying to catch up with the work that they don’t have time to cover in class.

This is also placing an added pressure on the family as homework can become a point of tension between parents and children.

Metcalfe believes that one way to relieve this tension is for parents to instead have conversations with the teachers about the volume of homework if the children are overwhelmed rather than the children.

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