Winter break is called a “break” for a reason, to give students a break from the daily stress of school and homework, but some teachers decide to assign work over break anyway.
Homework should not be assigned to be completed over break because it interferes with students’ days off from school. Students look forward to breaks because, “break is supposed to be time with family and friends and not focus on school,” sophomore Connor Koch said.
Spending quality time with family over breaks benefits students’ academics. According to opencolleges.edu, “Assigning less homework makes it easier for families to have time together. Family studies at the University of Michigan show that family time is extremely important to achievement and behavior.”
Students do not want to have to worry about completing lengthy homework assignments over break since they might lack the time to complete all of them, especially if they are traveling. “Whenever I go on vacation over the holidays it’s stressful to worry about homework,” sophomore Anela Trakic said.
Over holiday weekends or breaks scheduled around a holiday, families may be focused on religious activities, not school. Even if they aren’t going on vacation, students may not have time to complete assignments, therefore making it unfair for teachers to assign work. “Teachers shouldn’t give out homework over three-day weekends because a lot of people celebrate the holiday and don’t have time to do work,” junior Gabi Giro said.
Another common reason assigning homework over breaks should be avoided is to give students a chance catch up on lost sleep. Students often stay up late to finish homework they have procrastinated on or haven’t had time to finish. This leads to loss of sleep, which is detrimental to students’ learning. Being able to go to bed earlier than usual will positively affect students. According to opencolleges.edu, “They will come back to school feeling re-energized.”
Teachers may think that assigning homework over winter and spring breaks will ensure that students retain information they are currently learning in class. Forgetting information over break could be avoided if units and unit tests were all done before these breaks, and students wouldn’t have to worry about studying during their time off. “I have unit tests in some of my classes right before winter break, which helps me make sure I won’t forget things for the test over break,” Giro said.