Homework and Flipping


It was an odd juxtaposition. There on my twitter feed, side by side, a link to an article arguing against homework, and a link to an argument favoring the flipped classroom.

The arguments against homework are many– as many as there are different types of homework. Students don’t really benefit from it. Students don’t really do it. And those are just educator arguments– my students will also argue that after they leave the school building, that time is their time, for work, for family, for whatever pursuits they choose to pursue. That’s the point of view that leads commenters to say that homework is bad for the whole child.

And yet what is a flipped classroom except a classroom that runs on huge amounts of homework.

I have no strong feelings about the flipped classroom– I’ve been doing it my whole career, only instead of saying “Go home and watch this video,” I’ve been saying “Go home and read this book.” I don’t do a lot of traditional homework beyond some occasionally “Go forth and practice this skill on your own.” But my honors students in particular are expected to do the readings and write the papers primarily on their own time.

I read teachers who have success flipping, and I have encountered the following conversation among students many times as well:

Chris: Did you watch that video last night?

Pat: Nah. He’s just going to have to explain it all in class anyway.

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