Experts attribute this to the country’s low (5.8 percent) poverty rate, extensive social welfare system, 12-to-1 student-teacher ratio, and classes that fully integrate special needs students into general education classrooms.
They also note that the Finnish government values teachers and encourages staff to prioritize collaboration, network building and the sharing of best practices. Throughout the country, many elementary schools have completely eliminated recess.
Some are related to the living situation, with barriers like not having a quiet place to study or do homework, or no computer or internet access.
“But remember,” Duffield explains, “only 14.4 percent of students who are homeless are even staying in a shelter.
But many schools have sidestepped these recommendations, with kindergarteners, first and second graders often getting 25-30 minutes of work per night.
Among older students, researchers have noted that excessive homework assignments have led to an increase in stress-related headaches, exhaustion, sleep difficulties and stomach ailments.Jessie Winslow teaches sixth grade social studies at the Ephraim Curtis Middle School in Sudbury, Massachusetts, a wealthy community with a median household income of more than 0,000.Winslow acknowledges that her students are coming into school with more anxiety and depression than previous academic cohorts.“I always give my students a choice packet where they can choose which homework assignment they want to complete — word finds or word games, worksheets, or special projects — and it’s always due at the end of the week or on Monday, to give them the opportunity to get it done,” she begins.“Furthermore, I always make sure that there is something that every child has the ability to do.” She does this despite mandates from the Chicago Board of Education dictating what should be taught and how much homework should be assigned for each grade level.In addition, Cosey offers incentives for her students to encourage assignment completion.The incentives help Cosey assess how a particular student is doing in a specific subject, and also give a window into her students’ home situations. When a child chooses gloves over candy, it tells me what’s going on in that child’s life.“I also gave homework to get them thinking about things that we’d talk about the next day, for example, why they thought the U. Another went to the library on the way home every afternoon for the same reason.It was the sole place she could concentrate.” Likewise, Chicago elementary school teacher Mariam Cosey sees the impact of poverty, hunger, and insecure or overcrowded housing in her classroom each and every day.They also suggest that it contributes to alcohol and drug abuse. A Duke University study found that homework does little to boost elementary school achievement, a finding that has led a smattering of K-6 schools in California, Florida, Illinois, New Jersey, New York, Massachusetts and Vermont to either eliminate homework completely or eliminate it during school breaks.“Kids are terribly stressed about school, grades, peers, parental expectations and the known threats and ideation around climate change,” Nancy Romer, a longtime New York City activist and former psychology professor at Brooklyn College, told .