As children in United States get ready to go back to school, a new study has suggested that the homework they bring home is adding to 'family stress'. The researchers stressed on the '10-minute rule', the principle, set in 2006 by the NEA teachers' union, that the time kids spend on homework should be the equivalent of their grade level times 10.
For the study, researchers studied 1,173 English- and Spanish-speaking parents in Rhode Island with children in kindergarten through high school to take stock of the impact of homework. The '10-minute rule' suggests that a first grader should get 10 minutes of homework a day, a seventh grader 70 minutes and a 12th grader 120 minutes.
The study revealed that primary school children were getting three times more homework than recommended under the 10-minute rule. It added, "Family stress increased as homework load increased and as parent's perception of their capacity to assist decreased. The amount of homework load reported also varied significantly between English and Spanish speakers, as it did between parents with limited education and those with advanced education."
The study findings recommend better application of the 10 minute rule, and homework assignments that call for parents to be supportive mentors, not skilled tutors.
The study appears in American Journal of Family Therapy