To homework or not to homework . . . that is the question!

This Beyond The Apple Professional Conversation provides your Professional Learning Community with some conversation starters, research, and practical suggestions about homework.

To get the conversation started, suggest your colleagues read the article and view the video below and make notes about their thoughts, suggestions, and questions.

  1. When Homework is Useless  by H. Glatter, E. DeRuy, & A. Wong
  2. Beyond the Apple’s conversation about homework:

Next, encourage the members of your PLC  to:

  • chat with their colleagues about the impact of homework on student learning, student engagement, and a student’s life at home
  • create a list pros and cons list about homework.

Now, dig a little deeper by moving beyond the group’s thoughts and conversations about homework to some of the research about homework.  Divide your PLC into 3 groups and assign one of these articles to each group. Provide some time for each group to read the article, share a summary of the article and share their thoughts and questions about the article.

  1. Alfie Kohn has written extensively about homework. Kohn’s article, Rethinking Homework provides just enough “Kohn-style controversy” to get the next step of this conversation about homework started.
  2. For a more extensive overview of the research about homework, check out Salon’s Homework is Wrecking Our Kids.
  3. In Homework Alert: How Much is Enough?, the Council of Ministers of Education, Canada look at the relationship between homework and student success at the elementary, middle school and senior high school levels.

So, what about “good homework” such as project based homework?  In theory, the idea of a project based homework seems wonderful . . .  projects provide an opportunity for student choice, research, problem solving, and family involvement. But those who have experienced the homework project may feel otherwise.

Ask the members of the PLC to read  Susan Messina’s HuffPost article about homework projects and then provide time for them to share your thoughts with a colleague. Here are our thoughts:


So do we eliminate homework, rethink homework, or maintain existing homework practices.? Before making a hasty decision, take time examine your school’s existing homework practice through the perspective of Beyond the Apple’s Guide To Equitable Homework.    

For more professional conversations about education, please visit:Beyond the Apple . . . Reframing Conversations in Education or contact us at


About Beyond The Apple

Beyond the Apple provides everything a Professional Learning Community needs! Designed to follow Beyond the Apple's Tenets of Adult Education, our videos re-ignite the excitement of professional conversations among educators in the classroom, university, colleges and professional training. Our free teaching and learning resources provide a follow up with more information that is current, research based and practical.
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