Education’s effect outside of school

Brian Kraege


Going to school for around eight hours is considered normal as it follows the eight-hour day movement back in 1907 that established that people should have eight hours each of work, play and sleep. But how does school affect students outside of those eight hours?

Let’s talk about homework. Roberto Nevilis was considered the inventor of homework and used it as punishment for his students. Homework seems fine at first glance but it breaks the eight-hour day that the rest of society tries so hard to follow.

A lot of homework at Stevens Point Area Senior High (SPASH) comes in the form of various papers and projects relating to whatever is being covered in class and to help learn and memorize information through trial and error so students are ready for tests. But what is the point of a teacher if everyone learns through packets?

Homework at SPASH is not bad early in the year as everything starts small, but as time goes on it can quickly pile up and if you do not give your all to finish it, you will quickly fall behind. I think this problem stems from teachers giving work they expect to be done from home and fill up their class time with more in class work. There are classes made for homework but some assignments take priority over others and may take a lot more time than others.

Doing work at home is not too bad if it is something small, but once you have multiple large projects you have to finish, you start cutting into your free time and even sleep.

Plenty of questions have been raised on whether teens in school are getting enough sleep, the most common consensus is that they need a few more hours to be at their best. Some say the times they should be sleeping need to be different. This could be the reason why seeing a student sleeping in class is a common sight at SPASH.

Tests are a major part of American education as they not only tell what the students need to improve on but also what the teachers need to teach more of. Tests make up a large part of a student’s grade which gives them top priority on a student to-do list. Students must spend time studying for tests but also preparing for anyretakes for any test they could have done better on.

Schoolwork is a spiral that can quickly get out of control. The schedule makes it hard to stay awake and means you might sleep in a class and learn nothing, making homework take longer to finish or having that work change your priorities in your study hall. If you do not catch up right away you could miss out on other classes’ homework trying to make some progress which can keep cycling until you need to stay up doing work starting the cycle over again.

This example is pretty extreme and usually happens over a long period of time but it is not impossible nor is there much anyone can do to stop it. This combined with the fact that most students are not exactly the type to get perfect grades and do not want to cut into their own time to do more schoolwork means that it is just that much harder to get back on track.

I think the best way to deal with this is not only helping the students who start to trip up but also to change the meaning of homework from extra work that can potentially hurt your grades to a tool that lets students actually focus on learning the concepts behind the work. Then they can understand what is on the tests that each class has and leave room for choice between which work they should do and which they can wait on.