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Los Angeles gives up on homework
Los Angeles Times ^ | June 27, 2011 | Howard Blume

Posted on 06/27/2011 8:13:40 AM PDT by van_erwin

Vanessa Perez was a homework scofflaw. The Marshall High School senior didn't finish all of it — largely because she worked 24 hours a week at a Subway sandwich shop.

Alvaro Ramirez, a junior at the Santee Education Complex, doesn't have his own room and his mother baby-sits young children at night. "They're always there and they're always loud," he said, explaining his challenges with homework.

The nation's second-largest school system has decided to give students like these a break. A new policy decrees that homework can count for only 10% of a student's grade.

Critics — mostly teachers — worry that the policy will encourage students to slack off assigned work and even reward those who already disregard assignments. And they say it could penalize hardworking students who receive higher marks for effort.

Some educators also object to a one-size-fits-all mandate they said could hamstring teaching or homogenize it. They say, too, that students who do their homework perform significantly better than those who don't — a view supported by research.

But Los Angeles Unified is pressing forward, joining a growing list of school districts across the country that are taking on homework — including Fontana and Pleasanton, N.J. In many districts, limits are being placed on the amount of homework so students can spend more time with their families or pursue extracurricular activities like sports or hobbies. The competition to get into top colleges has left students anxious and exhausted, with little free time, parents complain.

In Davis, a policy that took effect this year specifies homework maximums, with some exceptions for advanced courses. And it prohibits assigning homework over weekends and holidays while also addressing the quality of the assignments.

(Excerpt) Read more at latimes.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Front Page News; News/Current Events; US: California
KEYWORDS: 6hoursareenough; education; homework; lausd; learning; slackers; surrender; teaching
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1 posted on 06/27/2011 8:13:46 AM PDT by van_erwin
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To: van_erwin

One more step on California’s steady decline into third-world status.


2 posted on 06/27/2011 8:15:34 AM PDT by van_erwin
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To: van_erwin

How long before the grades will be based on:

Homework - 5%
Classwork - 5%
Tests - 5%
How well the students feel about themselves - 85%


3 posted on 06/27/2011 8:16:07 AM PDT by So Cal Rocket (Task 1: Accomplished, Task 2: Hold them Accountable!)
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To: van_erwin

‘Just preparing kids for the real world. Don’t you always whine to your boss the numerous reasons that you can’t complete job assignments? /s


4 posted on 06/27/2011 8:18:22 AM PDT by freeangel ( (free speech is only good until someone else doesn't like it)
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To: van_erwin

Ya gotta just love how the LAT always has an tear-jerk example for whatever liberal cry-story they’re pushing.

I don’t give a smelly Obama about LA. It’s toast. Their schools are a complete joke, and ‘twould be better to just let the children roam the streets and beg...heck, they’re begging from us now.

The sooner all our tech type companies abandon that third world city (and soon to be third world state) the better.


5 posted on 06/27/2011 8:18:25 AM PDT by Da Coyote
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To: van_erwin
"A new policy decrees that homework can count for only 10% of a student's grade."

I'll bet the other 90% doesn't count for much either.

6 posted on 06/27/2011 8:18:48 AM PDT by Batrachian (Prepare for four more years)
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To: van_erwin

Well, when your student body is comprised of almost completely illegal immigrant children, or the children of illegal immigrant and you spend almost all of your time and budget just getting those 3rd world children to a point where they are actually performing at least a grade level below where they should be, what do you expect?

Never put your child in Public Education.


7 posted on 06/27/2011 8:19:06 AM PDT by SoConPubbie
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To: van_erwin

Why not? They gave up on education a long time ago


8 posted on 06/27/2011 8:20:15 AM PDT by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Happiness)
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To: So Cal Rocket

>Homework - 5%
Classwork - 5%
Tests - 5%
How well the students feel about themselves - 85%<

Oh, sooner than you think. I’m usually close by to Hollywood HS and the projects I saw recently were all moonbat projects and assignments.


9 posted on 06/27/2011 8:23:54 AM PDT by max americana (FUBO NATION 2012)
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To: van_erwin

“Vanessa Perez was a homework scofflaw. The Marshall High School senior didn’t finish all of it — largely because she worked 24 hours a week at a Subway sandwich shop. “

Sounds like Vanessa is investing her free time in Subway instead of her homework. No one forced her to work at Subway. It’s about priorities folks. Guess Vanessa believes Subway is more important than her homework?


10 posted on 06/27/2011 8:26:16 AM PDT by Sprite518
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To: van_erwin
I'd be curious as to how many Freepers feel they got most of their education by:
  1. Sitting in a classroom, even listening attentively and taking notes.
    versus
  2. Learning how to study. IOW, homework, drills, practice problems, study halls, libraries, writing and research to support that writing.

I'd rank my own experience as something like 80%/20% in favor of option #2. And I finished high school in the mid-1970's in one of the better ranked school districts in one of the better ranked states.

I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of teachers which I had who were genuinely outstanding. It might take both hands to count those who were pretty good or above average. All the remainder would be average or below. I don't think the situation has gotten any better, especially in Los Angeles.

11 posted on 06/27/2011 8:27:01 AM PDT by Vigilanteman (Obama: Fake black man. Fake Messiah. Fake American. How many fakes can you fit in one Zer0?)
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To: van_erwin
Alvaro Ramirez, a junior at the Santee Education Complex, doesn't have his own room and his mother baby-sits young children at night. "They're always there and they're always loud," he said, explaining his challenges with homework.

I remember reading an article about the first woman appointed to the SCOTUS - Sandra Day OConner, IIRC. She said she grew up in a home with lots of noise, so she got used to studying in spite of the noise, which paid off after she moved away from home as most school environments are not library-quiet.

12 posted on 06/27/2011 8:27:45 AM PDT by knittnmom (Save the earth! It's the only planet with chocolate!)
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To: So Cal Rocket

That grading system is not far off, a couple of years.

So students who wish to master a subject, master their craft if you will by doing homework will be penalized for it. Of couse most students who do homework are better prepared than those who don’t. The reasons for not doing homework are interesting and suggest a disadvantage to those who don’t. Perhaps, the next step is to prevent parents from discussing current events, helping with math problems and so forth. After all there are some parents that are unable or unwilling to discuss or help. It is unfair to these students (sarc).


13 posted on 06/27/2011 8:30:17 AM PDT by Maine Mariner
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How useful was the homework in the first place? A few years back I heard Alfie Kohn interviewed on my local public radio station. What he had to say was pretty interesting.

Here's an article he wrote on the same subject.

14 posted on 06/27/2011 8:31:37 AM PDT by whd23 (Every time a link is de-blogged an angel gets its wings.)
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To: van_erwin

I completely disagree with this, but my wife and a group of parents went to our school a few years ago to complain about one of the teachers my son had and the amount of homework he assigned.

On average his teacher assigned anywhere between one to three hours of homework every night, and that was just for the one subject he taught, not including the other 5 classes he had.

When my daughter had him she was routinely doing 3-4 hours of homework every day for her classes combined and more on the weekends. I’m all for kids working hard and doing homework, but when the kids have to sit there from 4:00 to 6:00 when they get home and then another hour or two after supper every day its just too much.

Somehow I doubt any teacher in LA is coming close to this though, just expecting a student to read a book in a couple of weeks is beyond expectations I bet.


15 posted on 06/27/2011 8:31:41 AM PDT by Abathar (Proudly posting without reading the article carefully since 2004)
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To: van_erwin
In the tradition of liberal politicians caving to societal degeneracy and decadence, the education mafia has caved to the kids again - - and, of course, life just got easier for the teachers, too.


16 posted on 06/27/2011 8:38:17 AM PDT by Lancey Howard
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To: Sprite518
“Vanessa Perez was a homework scofflaw. The Marshall High School senior didn’t finish all of it — largely because she worked 24 hours a week at a Subway sandwich shop. “

Sounds like Vanessa is investing her free time in Subway instead of her homework. No one forced her to work at Subway. It’s about priorities folks. Guess Vanessa believes Subway is more important than her homework?

Yeah, that one threw me too. I worked when I was in high school, as did nearly all my friends. Whether it was working in a restaurant, delivering pizzas, working at Hardees, at the grocery store, whatever - we all worked about 15-25 hours a week, and somehow we still had time to do our homework (and go out and have fun, too).

I guess these kids are just made of weaker stuff. Pathetic.

17 posted on 06/27/2011 8:40:42 AM PDT by van_erwin
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To: van_erwin

I often wonder why one cannot teach in a classroom the basic requirements and assign items such as Book Reports, extra lessons based on test/progress reports, and “extra credit” to make up because of illness.

Then I remember attending HS in Kali where 40+ students were the norm per 1 class, teachers took 20 minutes out of a 50 minute period to settle things down, and bathrooms were guarded by on site Police Officers. I can not so proudly state I graduated without ever being required to write a paper - on anything.

This was in the Mid-80s. I imagine it has not improved.


18 posted on 06/27/2011 8:42:11 AM PDT by NoNAIS (Yet another Government program not needed.)
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To: Sprite518
Guess Vanessa believes Subway is more important than her homework?

In the brave new world of Obamanomics, she may be onto something.

19 posted on 06/27/2011 8:42:29 AM PDT by Lancey Howard
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To: van_erwin
What a load of BS. I worked 24+ hours a week a Farrell's Ice Cream during my senior year and never missed a homework assignment. In grad school, I worked 42 hours a week with 16 units of course work each semester. During all the years I attended school, my parents ran the TV or stereo at a high volume level. Sometimes I just had to defer working on my homework until the 10 PM to 2 AM time slot when the noise was gone. I didn't let that stop me. Losers make excuses.
20 posted on 06/27/2011 8:44:28 AM PDT by Myrddin
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To: van_erwin

“In many districts, limits are being placed on the amount of homework so students can spend more time with their families or pursue extracurricular activities like sports or hobbies. “

Activites such as flash mobbing, hobbies like video games, street basketball?

LA gives up on education.
LA gives up on students being able to get any job.


21 posted on 06/27/2011 8:44:45 AM PDT by FreedomGuru
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To: van_erwin

In the early ‘70s I worked three hours (3 - 6) every afternoon after school, and another 16 on Saturday and Sunday at a Sunoco service station. Somehow, I got all my homework done in a house full of noisy siblings. (No, I didn’t have my own room, lol.)


22 posted on 06/27/2011 8:45:13 AM PDT by Lancey Howard
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To: van_erwin
Vanessa Perez was a homework scofflaw. The Marshall High School senior didn't finish all of it — largely because she worked 24 hours a week at a Subway sandwich shop. Alvaro Ramirez, a junior at the Santee Education Complex, doesn't have his own room and his mother baby-sits young children at night. "They're always there and they're always loud," he said, explaining his challenges with homework.

Why is the LA Times only picking on Hispanics? Can't they find some Asian examples?

23 posted on 06/27/2011 8:46:54 AM PDT by Moonman62 (The US has become a government with a country, rather than a country with a government.)
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To: van_erwin

When I was in high school,we had study halls, and this ensured that we all did a minimum amount of homework per day. Today, they load-up students’ time with too many junk courses to allow for study halls.


24 posted on 06/27/2011 8:49:32 AM PDT by Socon-Econ (Socon-Econ)
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To: So Cal Rocket
"How long before the grades will be based on:

Homework - 5%

Classwork - 5%

Tests - 5%

How well the students feel about themselves - 85%"

You need a couple of additional categories: Marching against The Man (Wisconsin) and Marching for La Raza (California).

25 posted on 06/27/2011 8:51:09 AM PDT by Truth29
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To: van_erwin

Where was this rule when I was in school. Homework and I never got along, but I aced all my tests. The combination of nearly zero homework done and A on all my tests squeaked me through school, with this rule I’d have gotten Bs.


26 posted on 06/27/2011 8:55:00 AM PDT by discostu (Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn)
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To: Sprite518
“Vanessa Perez was a homework scofflaw. The Marshall High School senior didn’t finish all of it — largely because she worked 24 hours a week at a Subway sandwich shop. “

24 hours a day, and they might have a point.

27 posted on 06/27/2011 8:58:44 AM PDT by Lazamataz (Until Obama, has there ever been, in history, a Traitorous Ruler?)
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To: van_erwin

But how will they be prepared for the challenges of all the green jobs that are being “created”?


28 posted on 06/27/2011 9:01:19 AM PDT by unixfox (Abolish Slavery, Repeal The 16th Amendment!)
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To: discostu

I was the same as you. I despised having to do busy work once I already knew the material. Aced all the tests, refused to do homework. Had a 2.8 graduating High School because of it. With this rule, I would have had at least a 3.5.


29 posted on 06/27/2011 9:01:19 AM PDT by Anitius Severinus Boethius
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To: Vigilanteman
I needed a chemistry class for my entrance requirements to UCSD. I had to ditch the band 9 weeks into the first semester to get into the chemistry class. My dad counseled me to go through the book cover to cover to make sure I was caught up. I finished the book cover to cover including all the exercises at the end of each chapter in 3 weeks. The teacher didn't touch 10% of the material all year. I was a sophomore in a classroom of juniors and seniors. Easy A. That effort made my college chemistry classes a breeze. It's really not about the quality of the teachers. It's the effort you exert as an individual. If you're not making the effort, the best teacher on earth won't make any difference.

My middle son had incompetent teachers. He studied the material, conducted evening review sessions for his fellow students who cared enough to study and substituted for the seat warmer paid by the school district when that "teacher" was totally incapable of conducting the class. I reviewed his compositions for English classes after the "teacher" had "graded" the work. Inexcusable. Spelling errors and grammatical errors were not flagged. I held his feet to the fire. It made a difference.

The Vietnamese kids seemed to do much better than their peers at school. Why? Their parents required them to sit down at the kitchen table and complete their homework before they could "play" after school. My parents had the same rule, but didn't supervise the effort. The honor system was good enough for me.

30 posted on 06/27/2011 9:01:28 AM PDT by Myrddin
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To: van_erwin
I've always found it laughable that ANY portion of a grade would result from whether homework was done.

Grades in High School and College should be the result of test scores alone.

31 posted on 06/27/2011 9:02:17 AM PDT by Mariner (War Criminal #18)
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To: Sprite518

I was just like her as a teenager. Of course, I was taught more working for McDonald’s and Subway than at school. Most of my homework was mind numbing and repetitive. on the other hand, I was an assistant manager by the time I was 18. Most homework serves little to no purpose besides repetition. If a student can pass a test on the subject, that is the true measure of their knowledge of the subject.


32 posted on 06/27/2011 9:02:38 AM PDT by Angry_White_Man_Syndrome
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To: Vigilanteman

Education or learning? I always did most of my learning by reading, just not usually text books. Most of the “school” stuff I learned was just from in class. Homework always felt boring and repetitive to me, I’d already learned it and didn’t feel a need to keep writing it down, and the more A’s I got on tests the less interested I was in homework.

I think what really killed me was when my Jr High English class entered the mythology section of the course. Not even sure why we were learning Greek mythology in English class but I’d just finished obsessing on mythology, having read pretty much every single book on it our public library had, including the book that was handed out to us. That lead to a month long nap, and my figuring out that I could learn on my own. After that for me school became about proof not about learning.


33 posted on 06/27/2011 9:03:44 AM PDT by discostu (Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn)
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To: So Cal Rocket

I thought ‘showing up was 90% of life’. I guess, in LAUSD, it’s even more than that.


34 posted on 06/27/2011 9:04:05 AM PDT by Ro_Thunder (I sure hope there is a New Morning in America soon. All this hope and change is leaving me depressed)
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To: van_erwin

“Some educators also object to a one-size-fits-all mandate they said could hamstring teaching or homogenize it.”

Yet the praise the same approach to health care and net income.....


35 posted on 06/27/2011 9:05:13 AM PDT by CSM (Keeper of the "Dave Ramsey Fan" ping list. FReepmail me if you want your beeber stuned.)
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To: Anitius Severinus Boethius

Not that I don’t acknowledge the usefulness of homework in the learning process. When I didn’t understand stuff in class I would do the homework, it was having to do the homework when I actually got it in class that irritated me. I was never interested in chasing points, I had books to read.


36 posted on 06/27/2011 9:11:38 AM PDT by discostu (Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn)
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To: van_erwin

Personally, I have little regard for homework; it’s almost always mindless busy work that turns kids off to learning.


37 posted on 06/27/2011 9:11:57 AM PDT by americanophile ("this absurd theology of an immoral Bedouin, is a rotting corpse which poisons our lives" - Ataturk)
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To: freeangel

I remember a woman caller to Dr. Laura saying how she told her boss that she had ADHD and if he can forget about her meeting a project deadline.


38 posted on 06/27/2011 9:12:46 AM PDT by massgopguy (I owe everything to George Bailey)
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To: Vigilanteman

Best teacher I ever had was a stats professor in college. We had our first test covering the first two chapters of the course materials on the third day of class.

He stood up in front of the class and said anyone with less than %70 on that test should just go drop his class and stop wasting his time.

I was sick when I took the test and scored a 49. He made me mad. I said to myself I’ll show that SOB. I dug down like I had never had to dig before. School had always been easy for me. I passed that class with an A. I never missed more than 2 point on any other exam or assignment.

The funny thing was about halfway through the class I realized what a great teacher he was and his motivation for saying what he said that day. It turned in to one of the best classes I had and it was a fun challenge as well.

To this day I remember my stats well!


39 posted on 06/27/2011 9:17:47 AM PDT by Syntyr (Happiness is two at low eight!)
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To: Anitius Severinus Boethius
I squeaked by HS with a 2.2 GPA due to my hate for homework and English. However, I went on to graduate college with a 3.89 while working full time supporting my wife and daughter. Thankfully, most Engineering Professors counted homework for little or nothing toward your grade. Even the homework given was not repetitive. Some of the problems took an hour plus to work but they were not a waste of time.
40 posted on 06/27/2011 9:19:10 AM PDT by Angry_White_Man_Syndrome
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To: van_erwin

Yet Lincoln learned the law by candlelight between chopping wood and finding food!


41 posted on 06/27/2011 9:20:35 AM PDT by Oldpuppymax
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To: Angry_White_Man_Syndrome

Fast Food such as McDonald’s and Subway is all about repetition. Even for a manager...

At any rate, at that age education is more important than experience. Once over 30 I believe it reveres. Probably because most people have been out of school for a while at this point. Thus, what is important is what have you been doing since. The only time education applies after 30 is when you have two equal candidates applying for a position. Which by the way is very rare. Most of the time WHO and WHAT you know is what will get you a job. That has been my experience.


42 posted on 06/27/2011 9:20:45 AM PDT by Sprite518
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To: massgopguy
I remember a woman caller to Dr. Laura saying how she told her boss that she had ADHD and if he can forget about her meeting a project deadline.

Nowadays she could probably file suit under the Americans With Disabilities Act and win.
43 posted on 06/27/2011 9:36:45 AM PDT by Buckeye McFrog
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To: massgopguy
Not too many years ago, my wife and I took on a family of six foster kids, three girls 11-14 and three boys 6-9. The 9 year old boy was a real smart mouth with ADHD.

One day he got a bit too much for me and tried to excuse his behavior by using the ADHD excuse. I looked at him and said "That's your problem, not mine. You're the one who is going to have to learn how to deal with it, not everyone else around you!"

It was like a light turned on in his head. Nobody had ever told him that.

I added "You can learn how to deal with it now, while you are surrounded by people who care about you or you can learn how to deal with it later, when you are on your own and nobody cares. Which will it be?"

The Dad (decent guy and a family friend) finally got full custody from his useless ex- was able to reclaim his kids about two months later and told me that was a transformational moment for his son. It is just sad that our asinine court system had to suck him dry financially before they finally did what was best for the kids and got the enabling ex- out of the picture, permanently.

44 posted on 06/27/2011 9:43:37 AM PDT by Vigilanteman (Obama: Fake black man. Fake Messiah. Fake American. How many fakes can you fit in one Zer0?)
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To: van_erwin
My school went to a 10% HW grade, which isn't so bad for me, because it was always coming in late anyway and piled up and I didn't want to grade it. Problem was: I was told that I had to allow it to be handed in (although I could downgrade it) and parents -- particularly the more responsible ones who were making efforts even when their children didn't -- would ask me to accept it.

The bigger trouble for my students: if homework was only 10%, classwork got bumped up to 40%. And *I* am the one deciding how good your classwork is, and if I tell you that copying the "Aim:" into your notebook and one problem with no answer isn't doing your classwork, you aren't getting a big chunk of that 40%.

45 posted on 06/27/2011 10:02:47 AM PDT by Tanniker Smith (I didn't know she was a liberal when I married her.)
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To: whd23

I just finished “The Homework Myth” by Alfie Kohn. Very interesting.


46 posted on 06/27/2011 10:03:12 AM PDT by happyhomemaker (That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children)
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To: Sprite518
I'm a Manufacturing Engineer specializing in electric motors. My point was learning to be a manager a more valuable use of my time. Yes, some of it is repetition, but it is also learning to deal with the unexpected, allocation of resources and dealing with people.
47 posted on 06/27/2011 10:16:26 AM PDT by Angry_White_Man_Syndrome
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To: Moonman62

“Can’t they find some Asian examples? “

Almost certainly not :)


48 posted on 06/27/2011 10:20:44 AM PDT by Persevero (Homeschooling for Excellence since 1992)
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To: Vigilanteman

“Not too many years ago, my wife and I took on a family of six foster kids, three girls 11-14 and three boys 6-9.”

Awesome save, Vigilanteman, way to go.


49 posted on 06/27/2011 10:24:26 AM PDT by Persevero (Homeschooling for Excellence since 1992)
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To: Abathar

I’ve heard that the amount of homework that should be assigned is about 15 minutes per grade level, for everything.

Anything more and it starts to resemble work, for the sake of working.


50 posted on 06/27/2011 10:34:33 AM PDT by Jonty30
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