Why we have a “no homework” policy
Extensive academic research supports that blindly assigning too much homework at too young an age can actually backfire and thwart the very growth goals that we’re aiming to achieve with our children. Our kiddos work hard throughout a very long day. (Our primary school hours are from 8:45 AM – 4 PM). After this extended period of intensive focus, children need time to “unplug” and allow their brains to have some “active rest” time. We often tend to forget that children learn through play, and the strategic use of those late afternoon hours are critical to healthy brain development, strong family ties (healthy social/emotional growth), and positive feelings toward school and learning in general.
But please don’t mistake our “no homework” policy as an endorsement of “no learning” in the evening hours.
What we encourage instead:
- Plenty of outdoor play & creative/imaginative play
- Limited screen time
- Read to your children or have them read to you (depending on age)
- The content of what they’re reading isn’t so important…just get them into a habit of enjoying reading!
- Visit with them about their day and their experiences
- Incorporate the practice of important age-appropriate daily life skills into their after school routines
- Examples: setting the table for dinner, setting out their clothes for tomorrow, washing dishes or helping clean the kitchen, putting away the groceries
- Consistent bedtime routines that foster happy, calm, safe and loved feelings to end the day
Our official “no homework” policy is as follows:
Students in our primary school are only sent home with “homework” if they choose not to complete work during class. I.e., if a student exhibits off-task behaviors during the school day and fails to complete an assignment, the assignment will be sent home for completion. From time to time, our students may be offered bonus points, rewards, or extra credit for doing optional special projects or learning at home. These are not required and will have no negative impact on their grades if they choose not to do them.