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Ideas From The CBC

Thursday, September 21 at 2:00 pm

Homework: A 'sin against childhood'?

Homework is a flashpoint for conflict, both in the home as well as between the home and the school. Parents like Dawn Quelch are taking a stand and banning it from their homes. A hundred years ago homework was described as a 'sin against childhood.' But the practice is still a staple of our education system. IDEAS producer Nicola Luksic examines the ideological roots of this tension, which goes back to the beginnings of public education and the shift in thinking about child psychology and development. 

Guests (in order of appearance):
Cordelia Quelch -- Eight-year-old storyteller, big sister and Grade 3 student.

Dawn Quelch -- Mother of Cordelia Quelch. She's a criminal defense lawyer and she institutes a homework-free zone in her home.

Etta Kralovec -- Associate Professor of Teacher Education and Program Director of Graduate Teacher Education at the University of Arizona South. She is co-author of The End of Homework: How Homework Disrupts Families, Overburdens Children, and Limits Learning.

James Ogden -- Kindergarten teacher in Toronto. He's known as Mr. O to his students.

Harris Cooper -- Professor of Neuroscience and Psychology at Duke University. Author of The Battle over Homework: Common Ground for Teachers, Administrators and Parents, which is now in its 5th edition.

Steven Schlossman -- Professor of History at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. Co-author of a number of papers on the history of homework, including A 'Sin Against Childhood': Progressive Education and the Crusade to Abolish Homework 1897-1941

Pasi Salhberg -- Education advisor and former school teacher based in Finland. Author of Finnish Lessons 2.0: What can the world learn from educational change in Finland.

Also thank you to Jianzhong Xu. He researches the relationship between homework, time management and the regulation of emotion.

To listen to the audio of “Homework: A 'sin against childhood'?” on Ideas from the CBC online, please click HERE.