Written By: Sydney Brown (10)
Edited By: Mabrey Matz (11)
October 29, 2019
As Imagine students move into their second quarter of classes, many have already become accustomed to their new routines: school, extra-curriculars, homework, repeat. However, students in the class of 2022 report that they did not adjust quite as easily as other grades, and have had a rather difficult transition into their 10th grade year.
The National Education Association recommends about 1.5 hours of homework for 10th grade students. However, because the International Baccalaureate program has such rigorous standards; Imagine’s sophomores reported an average of three to four hours of homework per night, with two students saying they’d once spent up to seven hours on homework. Despite the students shared opinions on the topic, the opinions of Imagine teachers is quite different.
Their teachers do not intend for their students to spend an unreasonable amount of time on homework and say they expect their assignments to take up about 40 minutes per night. Instructors report they do consider the work other teachers assign while planning their homework, and that sometimes, the amount of time spent on homework is a result of a student’s time management skills. However, one teacher acknowledged that they can underestimate how long an assignment takes and encouraged students to provide honest and respectful feedback to their teachers. 10th grade teachers also reported intentional strategies, like extending a due date, mindfulness minutes, free time in class, or BYOC, which they use to relieve their students’ stress. Despite these accommodations, the sophomores were unprepared and caught off guard by their new workloads.
Additionally, the class of 2022 did not enter the school year expecting such a drastic change. Students described the transition as brutal, due to the increased workload and harsher grading. They feel that they were underprepared for the academic rigour and structural change between their freshman and sophomore years. Some students were disappointed in their results despite their hard work.
In addition to the severe transitions they faced, Imagine sophomores also feel that the amount of homework they are given affects their personal lives and mental health. In fact, there was a nearly unanimous agreement that the vast amount of homework for Imagine 10th graders greatly affected their mental health. Students said their workloads cause them excessive stress, and many feel that it leaves no time for an outside life or personal time. One student explained that the amount of homework makes, “you feel trapped” and that “it takes over your life.”
In conclusion, Imagine sophomores need a break; they need time to figure out what they want in life, and a proper high school experience. Endless nights spent on homework is draining them mentally and physically, while simultaneously decreasing their passion for learning. Teachers and students should unite and work together to find a solution.