Homework over break at Westlake High school- For or Against?


Michelle Khoury, GW writer

We’ve all been through this before. It’s the last day of school before the holiday break, you’re excited to finally have some time to relax, maybe you’re even going out of town, catching up on some of your favourite television shows, read a new book, or maybe just finally spend some more time with your family. But then disaster strikes suddenly, you hear your teachers say those oh so unwanted words…

You have homework over break.

The next thing you know you’re suddenly hearing about projects to complete, chapters to read, tests to study for, worksheets to do and now you’re stuck lugging your textbooks on your vacation and throwing all your plans out the window.

I personally have dealt with homework over various breaks many times. It’s a bit of a problem for me. It just depends on what the assignment is and how long I have to do it. A worksheet over break is fine, but several tests and a project is just going a little overboard. It also depends on what particular break it is. Summer break is roughly two months so I don’t mind summer homework because I’d have so much time to get it done, but thanksgiving break is only a few days so it’s more difficult to get everything done.

Regardless of how much it is or how much time I have I still don’t think it’s fair to give homework over breaks, particularly holiday ones. Holidays are a time for family, a time to appreciate what you have, and a time to give back to those in need. Why should we be sitting in our rooms or in a library somewhere with our noses in textbooks during such important times?

On top of that people have things to do over breaks, they have to travel with their families, they have to help cook holiday dinners, they have birthday parties, holiday parties, and the one I feel is most important, getting some sleep. Many students use holiday breaks to catch up on sleep they’ve been missing out on because of school whether it be from homework, or sports games, or some sort of extracurricular activity. Lack of sleep can do damage on the human body. When students get tons of homework thrown onto them, they lose a lot of that time to do things like catch up on sleep forcing us to continue wreaking havoc on our sleep cycles.

Now I’m not saying that teachers who assign homework over the break are criminal. I appreciate that they have lesson plans they have to stay on track with. Many of them teach AP, CCP, and IB and have to prepare their students for the rigorous exams that are given at the end of those courses.

Homework over break can be a double edged sword for some teachers, if they assign homework it keeps with the lesson plans, but hurts the students, if they don’t assign homework, it keeps the students happy, but could ruin the lesson plan, hurting the teacher. Some students find homework over break can be quite helpful. It keeps them busy when they don’t have anything to do and it helps them review what they’ve learned so they can be alert and focused when they return to school. And of course there are those of us who just don’t mind the homework, they can get it done and still enjoy their break no problem they don’t view it as being a task, just a normal part of being a student.

Overall, homework over break is a tricky subject. Sure it’s not a big deal like politics per say. But we call them breaks for a reason. And each of these breaks are for students and teachers alike to enjoy their time not having to worry about any school work. And assigning homework isn’t really a break from school now is it? Besides that’s just more papers to grade when we get back.