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Study Finds Elementary School Students' Homework Creates 3 Times As Many Conflicts If Parents Didn't Graduate College

Aug 18, 2015 05:50 AM EDT /By Hanna Sanchez

Study Finds Elementary School Students' Homework Creates 3 Times As Many Conflicts If Parents Didn't Graduate College

A new study found that primary school children do three times the recommended homework load provided by the National Education Association. It was also revealed that homework-related conflicts become 200 percent greater in households with parents lacking a college degree.
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Fourth Grade Student Works on Homework
(Photo : Sean Gallup| Getty Images News) Fourth Grade Student Works on Homework
A new study revealed that kindergarten students spend an average of 25 minutes on homework daily, and elementary school students do up to three times the homework load recommended by the National Education Association.
This research was completed by a team of researchers from the Children's National Health System, Brown University School of Medicine, Rhode Island College, Brandeis University, and the New England Center for Pediatric Psychology. The outreach was provided by the Good Parent Foundation. The team determined the Relative Homework Load by considering age and grade to adjust the amount of time spent on homework. The data was compared to NEA's recommended 10 minutes per level to get the RHL,according to PR Newswire.
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NEA's recommendations were based on prior evidence that homework within this time period produced the most desired academic results. Minimal gains were seen beyond these levels, and in many cases detrimental to learning.
While the first graders were found to have been doing up to thrice the NEA recommended homework load, those in the second grade reported doing 1.5 times greater than that. The study also revealed that homework-related conflicts become 200 percent greater in households with parents lacking a college degree.
"The levels of family stress and tension found in this study fall into ranges that could lead to detrimental physical and mental health," said Robert Pressman, who lead the study, which was published August 12 in the American Journal of Family Therapy. 
He went on to say that the homework load for kindergartners was similar to that of the first and second graders. "In that period when children are focused on early stages of socialization and finessing motor skills, an overload of homework will likely interfere with a Kindergartener's ability to play and participate in extra-curricular activities," he added.
The researchers examined over 1,173 English- and Spanish-speaking parents of students in grades K-12. They suggested a revamping of the homework system in the United States and make it family friendly, academically relevant, and culturally free.


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