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Kindergarten Homework?

Posted November 15, 2018 11:39 AM by Reese

Every day, my five-year-old comes home from kindergarten with math homework. Every. Single. Day.

My guess is that all the attention on STEM in recent years has led to adding homework at this early education level. While it does present its share of challenges, I feel a benefit of daily homework this soon is that it perpetuates good habits for future grades where the workload is heavier. I’m not at all opposed, as homework also gives me the opportunity to take a look at what my son is learning in school.

Once in a while, we lose track of time and sit down to do homework a little too late, and his abundantly absorbent mind has soaked up enough for the day. Those are the days where completion becomes a challenge. But the colorful worksheets and clever activities do lend themselves to a bit of fun. Most days, my eager little student dutifully sits by the dining room table fully engaged in each undertaking as I read aloud the instructions for the assignments.

Overseeing homework has led me to believe that the math concepts are far more advanced than when I attended elementary school. It’s only November, and my kiddo has already learned greater than, less than, equal to, patterns, sorting, and more. Perhaps homework reinforcing the daily lessons is to thank for the students being able to grasp these advanced concepts so rapidly?

Overall, I think the benefits outweigh the challenges and that kindergarten homework is an amenable concept. What are your thoughts?

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#1

Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/15/2018 12:24 PM

I think kids should be outside playing, or inside playing, with their friends...social skills are just as important as math...

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#38
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Re: Kindergarten Homework?

10/01/2020 9:56 AM

I always felt,... mainly from experience,... kindergarten was an introduction to order and social setting... I know from that some ‘head start programs where some children excelled at, because the parents interacted with their kids, which is fine, while other where naturally advanced???... and the parents let others know.

but studies have found that any advancement usually tapers off within a few years.

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#2

Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/15/2018 3:34 PM

Blog is corrupted.

It loads VERY slowly and runs off the edges of the screen.

Third time to try to respond.

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#3
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Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/15/2018 4:49 PM

Same for me.

iPhone, Safari.

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#9
In reply to #3

Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/15/2018 9:27 PM

I think it is the posted picture at the top that's responsible, its 10MB 3264x2448 pixel!

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#4

Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/15/2018 5:01 PM

I'll try again, by cutting and pasting. Response still glacial.

You want your kid to be "college and career ready" when they graduate. That's admirable and most of us want the same. But, indoctrinating small children to do homework at night may be counter productive, in the long run. I graduated 20 years before the internet was even a twinkle in Al Gore's eye. The "math" they teach today is not math. It's evolved into a convoluted journey to reach the same conclusion we reached with a pencil in grade school. My daughter is a grade school teacher and she hates it. But, it seems to be the flavor of the decade and we might as well embrace it. U.S. Army Hopes to Attract New Recruits with Video Games I'd give my child a time limit that they have to work on their "homework" and after that it's free time. I've had kids in school since 1972 until today. (Biological/step/adopted) and they all seem to have survived. Do what you think is right for your child and do not push too hard. Just stay engaged with them!

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#5

Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/15/2018 5:58 PM

It's well known that there has been a lot of criticism of Common Core math.

Some of the criticism is from parents simply trying to deal with a math formalism that is very different from how they were taught. (My own criticism is that Common Core math strangely and unnecessarily places the number 5 in a unique position, often stressing counting by 5s, as though that is somehow fundamental to understanding math.)

But the 'best' criticism I've seen is from Dr Megan Koschnick, who is a teacher, a mother, and an expert in young childhood educational development. Her biting criticism can be seen in this amazing video:

Dr. Megan Koschnick discusses the problems with common Core math.

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#8
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Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/15/2018 9:24 PM

(My own criticism is that Common Core math strangely and unnecessarily places the number 5 in a unique position, often stressing counting by 5s, as though that is somehow fundamental to understanding math.)

Well, it sort of makes sense when a child works of a simple multiple of 5 counting system. 5 fingers on each hand, 5 toes on each foot.

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#10
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Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/15/2018 10:00 PM

Teaching a child to count out by sixes or twelves makes more sense in a world where a gross is still a quite common unit of production or shipping count.

Lots of luck getting that to stick.

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#11
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Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/15/2018 10:05 PM

As long as they are not totally reliant on a calculator or calculator app.

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#18
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Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/16/2018 8:01 AM

There's nothing wrong with a child in kindergarten or 1st grade counting on his/her fingers. It used to be discouraged in schools, but no longer.

Common Core goes beyond simply counting by 5s for toddlers. The number is used in higher grades for operations like multiplication and long division when simply going to 10 would be quicker, easier, and make more sense. This level of math is for older kids long past the 'counting on your fingers' stage.

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#6

Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/15/2018 7:05 PM

My complaint is the almost total reliance upon calculators for ALL math; what does a kid do when the batteries die?

What do they do when older and must work a 'real' ca$h-register -- requiring mental calculation of percentages, discounts and change -- rather than simply swiping a card?

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#7

Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/15/2018 7:24 PM

I think that it's a mistake assuming that all children should be steered into STEM. Some are cut out for this (like most CR4 folks, probably,) and some are not. Trying to indoctrinate those not so inclined is like trying to teach a pig to sing: "It wastes your time and annoys the pig." Children should be encouraged to develop their talents, whatever they might be. JMHO.

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#39
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Re: Kindergarten Homework?

10/01/2020 10:02 AM

And may go further then that... I’ve seen adults that were tested very low, as well as students in their 2nd or even third year in college,... struggling with a liberal arts degree, switch to a STEM major, and took off like a rocket... being what May called ‘late bloomers they may have added another couple years to college because their Curriculum credits didn’t transfer to the new major.

but actually seeing a bulb turn on is a unbelievable sight.

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#12

Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/15/2018 10:41 PM

I think it's wonderful that your child is getting homework like this! When you look at what kids were taught at such a young age a century ago, our kids are being shortchanged. Kids brains are like sponges, they can soak up an incredible amount of information if it is expected of them.

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#13

Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/15/2018 10:53 PM

Apologies to all - I initially mistakenly uploaded the incorrect version of the image. The sized down version is there now, so it should be set. Thanks!

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#14
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Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/15/2018 11:00 PM

Yes, much faster for me.

As long as it’s good for me, all is well!

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#15

Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/16/2018 2:55 AM

I honestly hate math, but then again I realize how much I need numbers and computation as I grow up.

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#16

Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/16/2018 7:59 AM

i think that this is an excercise in teaching parents more than the child. it is trying to influence the parent to work at home with their kid to help them learn. i think most parents think that educating their child should be left to the school systems. this early aged homework assignment is to engage the parent to start working with the child so that the parent will get into a routine of helping their kid learn at home.

just my thoughts.

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#32
In reply to #16

Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/19/2018 4:38 PM

Teaching parents?

In such way; I tough my first child in a different manner in order to don’t forget the learned utilizing my teaching and practical vision. I consider my teaching better than stem system. And I agree with your previous comment as well.

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#17

Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/16/2018 8:00 AM

My daughter is in 1st grade. She has homework every day except Friday. The teacher is near my age (read 'older') and seems to be teaching both the district required common core and the traditional 'best way' math. My daughter likes math. We use the traditional method at home. My wife is very good at math (advanced level from a Chinese university), took one look at the common core and said, "That's dumb."

Back to homework! I think some homework is ok, but even at a first grade level it can be daunting. My daughter is taking Karate (Tong Soo Du?) two nights a week. On those nights: Karate after school, a little playtime during prep and cook time, eat dinner, homework, prep for bedtime, story time, then sleep; it all just feels rushed. There's no decompression time and very little time for her imagination to run wild.

My opinion is that yes, it does set up some study habits, but these can be tentative at best due to childhood activities and don't really help to start good, solid study habits.

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#21
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Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/16/2018 8:48 AM

Education is more important to a first grader than karate. Parents keep adding more and more useless tasks to their child's life. It gets so hectic that before you know it, they are out the door going to college or life. I am giving my opinion as i look back on raising my children. i wish i would have spent more time with education than dance or karate or piano ect. its not that my kids didn't do in careers but i just think of what my peers have done with their children and where they are now at.. mostly doctors.

give the kid an education, let them get outstanding careers where they make lots of money doing what they can tolerate so they will have lots of time and money to do what they enjoy as adults. Go for the high paying job, money is not everything but it is when you don't have it.

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#25
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Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/16/2018 12:14 PM

True. I guess I should let my shy, timid daughter be harassed by the class bully(s). At least having the confidence gained from karate she was able to stop him from pulling her hair and pushing her when the teacher wasn't looking. I mean, she's already excelling at school and in the top 5%, surely a bit of pushing and hair pulling wouldn't make her more introverted and withdrawn without proper knowledge to take care of herself. I guess she really doesn't need to learn stick up for her friends against the same classmate(s). They could form a little group like the Goonies. Her desire to learn is fine. Her desire to go to school is better, she is gaining the confidence to stand up for herself. I know well enough that when she gets older she will be doing even more extracurricular activities if she so desires. The better universities see many students with good grades, having even a small list of volunteer community services can tip the scales in a student's acceptance.

I'd rather my girls not do what they can tolerate, I'd rather they do what they enjoy. Their parents do, why shouldn't the offspring? Most children and young adults are not introduced to the different jobs available. When they are a little older, I plan on them talking with several different and diverse professionals about their jobs. This will let them know what is needed for each job. Let them have an insight into the requirements for anything they may be interested in.

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#30
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Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/19/2018 9:58 AM

I am all for the fight against bullies. i was bullied until freshman grade and then took up wrestling, boxing, Taekwondo, and whatever else i learned on the street. i am 56 now and do not fear much, so yes the self confidence lasts a lifetime. i was not specifically pointing to karate or Piano. i was trying to classify them as noise in the overall picture. yes we need some noise, but too many a parent has their child so structured in daily activities, they forget the most important thing for early development and that is an education.

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#27
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Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/16/2018 2:03 PM

I disagree, almost all children could benefit from karate, it teaches discipline and builds confidence, character, proper attitude, responsibility, in short, a lot of the qualities and tools needed to succeed in school and ultimately life....it's a vaccination against bullying, and it's a lot more fun than learning to play the piano....

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#19

Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/16/2018 8:19 AM

This issue is important to me. But, it's quite complicated, and won't allow a simple answer. So, just let me say what happened to me in school. In 4th grade, I showed an aptitude for math. In 5th grade, I was put into an advanced math class. But, I was taking the standard class and the advanced class at the same time. I didn't do so well. I was taken out of advanced math. In 6th grade, I was "back to normal". In Junior High (7th grade), I wanted to take algebra. They didn't want to let me take it, because they thought I couldn't hack it. I protested and promised I'd do all my homework and study hard, etc... I was motivated. I passed the course with straight As.

Regardless of the quality of any program, motivation is a big factor that can't be "standardized". "You can lead a student to class. But, you can't make him thirsty to learn.". And, just like the law of physics, (For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction), it's also true that, "For every benefit, there is a cost.".

The real key here, is to identify "Who's benefit?", and "Who's cost?" It's always unfair to make someone else pay for one's own benefit. That's what was so unhealthy/unsustainable/cruel about slavery. Sometimes I think we still haven't learned the real lessons that life is trying to teach us.

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#22
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Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/16/2018 10:45 AM

I too got caught in the "advanced math" program in primary school (about 60 years ago). I hated it - all the other kids got six homework questions and I got double or more. I eventually refused the additional work and the program slipped away. In high school (grade 9 and up) we moved to a new city - and the school simply put me in the next grade up for math - they even let me do the calculus a year only - supposedly when I didn't have the prerequisites. That I enjoyed - I was challenged academically but was not "burdened" with make work exercises.

Unfortunately I did not have fluency in languages and struggled with French and Latin. To be honest English class was not great either. Perhaps it was because I liked the sciences and put much less effort into the languages.

Later in life I wish I was more fluent in other languages. I have also developed an appreciation for the arts and theater.

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#20

Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/16/2018 8:48 AM

A child is not a robot neither our modeling computer, or ego. Whatever will be big or short,.. you cannot change it too much; it is what it is. New education is blindingly switching human equilibrium to a new generation of issues; fancy hypothetical dispositions to be remembered in the future. Love our kids (and ourselves) to make them stronger (cultivate) their natural skills to transform our society better in all domains. So, kindergarten science education should be practical (reflexive) at the school classroom and allow the children relax at home to growth their biological, psychological, and sociological (and spiritual) values.

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#23

Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/16/2018 11:15 AM

When I was a kid I spent my time negotiating with my mom ( who was an accountant ) over how many fish sticks I would eat instead of Lima beans.

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#26
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Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/16/2018 12:19 PM

Ugh! My oldest daughter does this now. Her ratios are funny, depending on the like or dislike of a food item. If I eat 2 green beans, can I have a bowl of Doritos, please?

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#24

Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/16/2018 11:20 AM

I think you perceive it correctly. Those young sponges should be fed whatever they can take in, math, languages, READING, whatever. Well maybe not politics especially not at this turbulent time. I guess there is a thin line between STEM learning and indoctrination.

Just make sure it is fun.

I had no kindergarten and had many tough times in school. I always wondered if kindergarten would have been the necessary head start to help me through those times. Maybe a head start at learning how to learn would have been the key. I am very familiar with the feeling that I missed that all important lesson that others had just before I arrived. Like I missed a memo.

My sisters did have Kindergarten and both were better students, one just retired from a life of teaching second graders.

I was a C and D student most of the time. It took until sophomore year for me to get interested in something I could relate to. Plane Geometry. Just so logical, so visible and that teacher - Mr Talo was just the no-nonsense but funny enough teacher to make it FUN to learn. Finally I was a B student.

So just try not to burn him out with the process. And make the rewards important and FUN.

old Jim in Havasu

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#28

Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/16/2018 2:23 PM

My own basic education was during the late 40's when maths was 'rithmatic' (part of the 3 R's) when learning was being taught how to counts on your fingers and toes (no problem, a lot of children from poor families did not have any shoes in the war years).

You learn Simple rote procedures - and I still do it today.

Homework was not 'learning' as such - it was simply a case of doing what had been taught that day to get practice. But as literacy was poor amongst adults it was unlikely to have someone to help with 'maths' - in my case mainly living with my gran - and grandad who left school at 12, semi literate, to get work - so their help was providing encouragement and home' and a loving friendly environment to live in - and stressing the importance of an education, to learn these things so that you could get on in life - something that was denied to them.

70 years on, the literacy issue could still be there. What if parents do not know anything about this new fangled stuff. What is STEM? I haven't a clue.

Perhaps we encourage the kids to learn the subject enough so they could teach us.

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#29

Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/18/2018 9:27 PM

Are we headed toward a Brave New World?

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#31

Re: Kindergarten Homework?

11/19/2018 4:10 PM

Actually, the best benefit of the homework is that you are spending time with your child in doing it together...

If he sees that you think it is important enough for you take (extra?) time to participate in the learning process with him, he may make the transistion to thinking that the homework has value for its' own sake more quickly, and not just see it as some more school work that he has to do at home...

Parental involvment, why is there not more of it?...

Providing just food, shelter, clothing, etc., are not enough for a child to become a well-adjusted adult, are they ?...

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#33
In reply to #31

Re: Kindergarten Homework?

02/14/2019 8:59 AM

I agree with Mr. Guest.

And suggest taking it a bit further. just as important as formal education, spend time with your child teaching them social skills, respect for self and others, common sense, and most of all history. Without "True History" they are doomed to repeat it. Public schools have turned these areas of learning into political tools. Just look at the young adults today. And I'll leave it there.

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#34

Re: Kindergarten Homework?

05/09/2019 5:25 AM

Even so small children as children who study in the kindergarten should have homework. When the children are still small, and they can get help with the task that is connected with doing homework from their parents, and when the children grow up and become students of colleges, lyceums, universities, institutes or other educational institutions, then they can get help from discussion essay writing service https://orderessay.net/discussion-essay.html which helps not only with writing discussion essay but also with writing essays that have different types, but also papers that are of a different type and which have a different topic.

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#35
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Re: Kindergarten Homework?

05/09/2019 7:29 AM

One thing you miss, is that a lot of people already have their own homework/homestruggles to do. You shouldn't pile on to the stuff they already have to do. When I was a kid, I used to to deliver newspapers every morning before school. That wasn't nearly as bad as what others have to deal with. Besides, a lot of school learning is about things our/their parents had no schooling/experience with and couldn't help if they wanted to. A lot of students have parents that never even went to school. It's the teacher who's the teacher, and kids should learn it from them, not from some 3rd party who might have some "shortcuts" to teach. You can learn the shortcuts after you learn the class. Classes should be a self-contained standalone "product" that everyone can participate in without outside help. They should be doing their own work, anyway. If they can't, the teacher should know about it. If you like to "fake it until you make it", then you're only cheating yourself. and could be putting out an "inferior product" that isn't worth anyone's money.

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#36
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Re: Kindergarten Homework?

05/09/2019 8:07 AM

Besides, students/parents shouldn't worry about trying to impress the teacher. They already know your dumb; That's why your in class to begin with. If you focus on learning the material, without focusing on your grades, you'll get as much as you can out of the class regardless of whether your teacher thinks your smart/dumb.

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#37
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Re: Kindergarten Homework?

05/09/2019 8:16 AM

PS. Check out this this video for enlightenment. Computer clean-up:

https://biggeekdad.com/2018/03/desktop-computer-cleanup/

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