Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Putting the Break Back in Spring Break

It's the Friday before Spring Break.  The anticipation of 2:55 is practically making you drool.  You imagine all of the things you will be doing next week, including a mini vacation to somewhere warm and relaxing with a drink in your hand.

Then it hits you. The e-mail from your principal:

"The School Board has implemented a new policy that all teachers must spend at least three hours over their break doing prep work.  It will be built into your contract time."

We'd be livid right?  Hell would be raised, the protests would be heard everywhere.

So why do we do this to our students?

Many of us don't.  But I was utterly shocked hearing from students the amount of homework they were assigned on Friday (the day before break) that would be due the day they came back from school.  One talked about a project that would easily take her a few hours.  Another talked about book work and worksheets.  I'm not talking a normal night's worth of homework.. I'm talking a solid 4-5 hours minimum of work they'd have to do homework over break.

Spring Break is a very important week for schools.  It gives students and staff time to recharge and be ready to tackle the last 10 ish weeks of school left.  So instead of looking at it as a "more time for kids to do homework" week, look at it as "time to get well rested mentally and physically to get back to work when they come back" week.

Don't assign homework over break.  Put the break back in Spring Break.  We'd be mad if we were expected to work over break (many of us do anyway to catch up)...why would we expect them to?

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1 comment:

  1. I am thrilled to see this post from you! My students tell me that they wish every teacher had my policy of refusing to give work over a break. It is exactly that -- a break! I am not doing work over Spring Break and I do not expect them to.