Excessive amounts of homework induce stress in remote learners

Gagani Liyanawaduge, Design Editor

Since the beginning of this school year, I have been assigned around 15 hours of homework every week. Along with the time spent in class, I spend a total of 50 hours on school a week. Why is it that I spend 50 hours on school each week while the average American adult works only 44 hours a week?

As remote students, we are assigned more homework because we are doing school from home. Some students feel that teachers are trying to make up for the time we lost because we started school late. I’m taking 3 AP classes, so my workload might be more than that of other students, but I strongly believe that, even with AP classes, I should not have to do this much homework. 

The amount of homework students receive causes unnecessary stress and is terrible for their mental health. Most students will lose sleep in order to finish their homework. The recommended amount of sleep teenagers are supposed to get every night is between 8 and 10 hours, but most teenagers get only 6 hours during weekdays. Loss of sleep leads to students having trouble in school the next day which could negatively impact grades. Sleep deprivation also causes mental disorders to develop and is extremely harmful to a person’s mental health. The stress from homework is an endless cycle; it starts with stressing out over not completing it, losing sleep, doing poorly in class, and then the cycle repeats.

During class, my teachers rush to get through lessons and then leave us with loads of homework, thinking that we’ll all get it done and learn lessons faster because we were assigned more practice than usual. Rushing the learning process will not help students learn more material. Getting through the material faster causes students to struggle with learning it.          

Weekends are supposed to be the one time during the week where I can take a break and relax, but teachers are assigning homework over weekends as well. After explaining a project, I was given Friday, the weekend, and Monday to work on it. I barely had free time during weekdays, but I had to take time on the weekend to do schoolwork.

I have a life outside of just doing homework everyday. I’m a senior and will be going to college next year, so I have to finish college applications and I have to complete a portfolio. I have a family that I want to spend time with and books I’d like to read. My homework is taking up the time I would use to not only take a break, but it’s also taking up the time I use to expand my knowledge of things I’m curious about that I wouldn’t learn in school. The only skill I get from doing homework is memorizing material and copying it for the test.

I am not a machine that exists only to do homework; I am a teenager and I would like to have time to be one.