Columnists Features

Importance of homework in schools

KAMBILIMA

TIMOTHY KAMBILIMA
HOMEwork has continued to be a controversial topic in our country. The debate concerning homework for pupils is an old one with attitudes shifting throughout the debate over the years.
Homework is an important extension of in-school chances to learn.
It is important for teachers and parents to know that homework improves the child’s memory and thinking capability.
It is also positively linked to student academic achievement. It is an inexpensive method of improving student academic preparation without difficulties.
Though we are promoting homework, how many schools and teachers have homework policies that are written?
Homework should be seen as a valuable resource for any teacher worth his/her salt. It allows pupils to practise, and in doing so, learn the unit material.
Pupils, parents and teachers should take homework seriously as it helps in the construction of knowledge, though there was little emphasis placed on the grades for it.
I am saying that giving our pupils homework is very important since it helps the child develop positive study skills and habits that will serve him or her well throughout life.
It also encourages the child to know how to use time wisely, which is very cardinal for one to be successful.
Homework teaches the pupil to work independently at home without the teacher being involved. It also teaches the child to take responsibility for his or her work. As you may be aware, responsibility starts while at school.
Homework allows the child to review and practise what has been covered in class by the teachers.
It is, therefore, important to give pupils homework. It really helps the child to get ready for the next day’s class as he or she will be anxious to get the feedback from the teacher.
It is a valuable tool for the teacher, helping in gauging the efficacy of his lesson and the work covered in that unit.
Schools should ensure that teachers are giving homework because of the fact that it helps the pupils learn how to use resources such as libraries, reference materials and web sites to find the much-needed information.
Through homework, the child is helped to keep away from many vices. It is important to encourage pupils to do homework because it encourages them to explore subjects better than classroom time permits.
Homework allows the child to extend learning by applying much different skill to new situations. It further makes the child integrate learning by applying several skills to a single task, such as book reports or science projects.
Homework also helps parents learn more about what the child is learning in school. However, in my 18 years of teaching at basic and secondary level in Zambia, I have noticed that most parents and pupils have no interest in homework.
Teachers and parents should take homework seriously as it is a platform for parents to communicate what the child is learning at school.
Homework motivates or encourages parents to spark children’s enthusiasm.
The author is a historian.




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