Poll: How Much Homework Do Your Kids Get?

Updated on December 13, 2012
A.B. asks from Albuquerque, NM
17 answers

So, my kids are 12, 11, 8, 5, 6 months, and newborn twins. (My 6 month y/o is adopted.) They are in grades 7th, 6th, 3rd and kindergarten. The 3 oldest are ALWAYS complaining that they have so much homework. Is that common to have that much at their ages? How much homework do your kids have? They usually have at least 2 hours worth of homework a day, if not more.

Just wondering.
Thank you !
Mom of 7.

What can I do next?

  • Add yourAnswer own comment
  • Ask your own question Add Question
  • Join the Mamapedia community Mamapedia
  • as inappropriate
  • this with your friends

So What Happened?

They are not in any advanced classes......just regular classes.

Featured Answers



answers from Minneapolis on

4th grader: 30 minutes of reading, 1 page of math problems, and one spelling exercise each night. His reading group is also adding an assignment that is due once a week. And each quarter he has a big book report project that is due (this quarter they researched a state, have to make a poster, and then do a presentation) so that takes a lot of time on weekends. He also has drum practice 10-20 minutes/day.

Total time varies because some days he dawdles and some days is focused.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Detroit on

My 3rd grader rarely has homework. She said early in the year that her teacher told the class she doesn't believe in homework. (Yay!) should would have to do a spelling activity every night but she is an awesome speller and doesn't need to study her spelling list.

My kindergartener has a short 5 minute activity to do nightly. Sometimes I think it's more so I know what he's working on in school.

1 mom found this helpful

More Answers



answers from Washington DC on

Comparing homework given by different schools, in different school systems, at different grades, really won't help you figure out your own kids' issues.

The issue here may not be homework at all -- it may be your kids' complaints about it. As Sunni posted, kids often are not efficient or focused about doing homework. Ask their teachers: Many teachers tell students that they should spend no more than X minutes or hours a night on this or that task, and that if the task takes longer than the X time -- the kid should stop, period, and discuss it with the teacher. Find out: Have your kids been told this and you weren't really given that message? I would wager that the third grader's teacher is not sending home a solid two hours of homework every night, and neither is the 6th grader's teacher, but the kids are somehow stretching it out. Also, are they working so long because they're taking breaks too often? Or because they procrastinated and never told you there was a project assigned three weeks ago that they could have worked on all along but have left until the last week before it's due, so they're working long hours each day on it?

I'd nail this one before the school year gets any further along. Ensure you're in the loop on their assignments and due dates the DAY they get the assignments. When they're told on Wednesday there'll be a test next Tuesday, they need to tell you -- on Wednesday, not on Monday night. Because you have so many kids in school, i'd set up a family homework calendar and be strict about the kids entering assignments, tests and homework on it so they see it on the wall and they know that YOU see it too. Work with them on being efficient and working on longer-term projects day by day. And get in touch with the teachers for the teachers' take on how long homework should be taking.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Austin on

Depends, the kids in middle school taking advanced subjects will usually
have 20 to 30 min. of homework a night per subject. Our daughter used to do some of it at lunch..

The kids in regulars are given time in class. If they really do the work, they will not have much if any homework..

No child is required to take the accelerated classes in case they are in extra activities, that would make it hard for them. For instance some of the football players in the fall, or some of the band kids would take regular classes so they could do their homework in class.

Are your children in advanced classes?

If a child felt overwhelmed, the parents were encouraged to watch how the child was doing their homework. If they were struggling, the teacher needed to be contacted.. Of course some of the students could request study hall during the school day.

Some students are just quicker at homework. Some are easily distracted. Our daughter needed about an hour of down time when we came home, before she would begin her Homework, but we knew a lot of her friends, started the moment they got home, or they would not want to work n it later.

In elementary school, we were told to have the child stop at 20 minutes so the teacher could see the pace the student was working at.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

I found over the years that kids do get normal amount of HW it is just that they are very inefficient at times doing it. They sit and ponder questions that they should look up in the text book or online, they procrastinate with looking for help, do not review their notes, not utilizing books properly, do not make proper outlines, do not revise drafts, and on and on. These things slow them down, make their work more difficult, and prevent them from understanding the material fully - which contributes for the kids spending a lot of time doing HW that should not take long at all, increases their frustration, and may result in a poor output despite long hours "doing" the work. I uncovered these things by working with my own kids and tutoring some other kids. Many kids have good intentions but simply do not know how to make their time productive. You may want to sit down with your kids and observe the whole process and get to the bottom why is HW taking so long and how much should it take in reality. Guide them, help them to streamline the process. I know it is difficult with 7 kids, just try one kid at the time, you may get a real eye opener.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from San Francisco on

My GD gets a homework packet at the beginning of the week. There are enough pages that she has to do 3 pages per day and study spelling words. Depending on the subjects, some days it takes longer than others. Two hours worth of homework is quite a bit, especially for the 8 and 5 year olds.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Augusta on

I have a 2nd grader and a 5th grader.2nd grader usually has 2 subjects a night, usually a math worksheet and some kind of spelling/language homework.
5th grader usually has at least one thing per night plus about every 2 weeks she's writing an essay.
It usually takes them IF they actually sit down and do it start to finish without distractions , about an 45 mins to an hr. It shouldn't take them 2 hrs a night to get it done, that only happens when mine are procrastinating and not actually DOING homework but just sitting there .

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Jacksonville on

Depends. When my son was in 7th he always had math homework. Always. But, he had time in class he could've done SOME of it (not all). But it wasn't 2 hours worth, either. Really, not much else in the other classes barring a special once per 9weeks project. Or reading a novel and doing a project or report on that once per 9 weeks.

When the kids were in private school, that was a biggie. Private schools tend to rate themselves based upon the amount of homework they can issue. The higher the grade the more hours per night. Really. When our kids were in it, we were told to expect basically 30 min per night the first couple years of elementary, then add 30 per year, more or less. So by 5th grade, they were saying an hour per night. 6th grade, 1.5 hours per night. 7th 2 hours per night. 8th, 2.5 hours, etc...
Which is just absurd. Truly.
But that was something they were proud of. How much homework they issued.
The public schools, however, where my kids are now, the pendulum seems to be swinging the other way. They don't seem to assign much homework. Really. My 9th grade son (same one that had math homework every day in 6th) always finishes his math at school. And rarely has other homework. But, they are on the block system, and have 100 minutes in each class at school, too.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Wausau on

10 year old (5th grade, elementary) - total homework rarely takes more than 15 minutes unless it is a special long-term project. Last night's homework took less than 5 minutes. Most nights he doesn't have any homework.

12 year old (7th grade, jr high) - typically 30 minutes at home. Not including gym, he has 7 classes plus a study hall. He makes good use of his study hall period by doing work when he has it. Yesterday, he happened to have been given large, labor intensive assignments in two classes plus his usual math work. It took about 3 hours to do it all and he is a steady "get it done" worker. I was really surprised, I'd never seen that much in one day before. It is the only time that has happened all year.

My older son has a friend that takes for-ev-er to do his homework. He complains about having SO MUCH homework, but he really doesn't. He has a study hall, but does not use it for school work. He wastes time at home complaining about it and procrastinating. He doesn't need help with understanding it, he just doesn't want to do it so he will sit there staring for literally hours, doing absolutely nothing when the work could easily be done in five minutes.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Detroit on

I had NO homework until 8th grade, with a bit of math starting in 4th grade. I see NO need for it before that. If anything, kids need to run and be active after school since we're facing an obesity epidemic in this country, and kids are becoming unhealthy with all the sitting (and screen time). My husband and I both went on to get advanced degrees. Homework is over-rated. If we needed help in a subject, we got it, though. One on one tutoring is amazing and a 1/2 hour is worth 2 hours of class time! In high-school I studied ALL the time. Hours a day. Every waking moment. So all I'm saying is before around 8th grade, I see NO need for homework, other than that kids should read and practice some math.

My oldest is beginning elementary. I don't push the homework and we do it but don't stress over it.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Pittsburgh on

My son is in first grade. He generally gets one sheet twice a week. We have been instructed to not allow the kids to spend more than 5-10 minutes on them. We have also been told that if we should prioritize family time over doing this homework. The kids can get 'homework passes' for doing various unexpected good deeds. DS has accumulated 6 at this point. I figure he will stop doing homework altogether by April or May at this rate. My personal feeling is that they have PLENTY of time to learn whatever they need to know in the 6 hours and 40 minutes of school they get each day.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Lansing on

My girls are in 2nd & Kindergarten...

My 2nd grader has an oral presentation monthly, reading nightly, tests to study for randomly, a weekly spelling test, and homework to do when work is not finished in class. (Her teacher has them do most of the work in class and only sends homework home to do extra practice and/or if they don't finish it in class which is very nice!)

My Kindergartner has weekly show and tell (which is more like a small oral presentation she is graded on), 2 books to read a week nightly, 3-4 site words to memorize weekly, and a work sheet given weekly.

Their school is big on presentations. Last year my daughter had weekly oral presentations. These presentations usually require 7-10 facts/info and a visual. Which is what she has to do this year too, but luckily only once a month. My kindergartner only has to say 3 facts/info and has a visual. And her grading is not as harsh yet.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

My daughter is in 2nd grade and studies maybe 10-15 minutes per night for a weekly spelling test. 10 words, 2 bonus words and 2 sentences. She studies a lot, because spelling isn't her 'thing'.

She also has a math sheet that comes out Monday due Friday that works out to 2 problems per day - her choice to do 2 per day or all 8 on Thursday evening. Math is her thing, so it takes 5 minutes per day.

My son is in 6th grade, and he completes all his work in class, and rarely has any homework.

Both kids are encouraged by the school to read 15-20 minutes each day.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Philadelphia on

I'd say my 6th grader gets the most by far - at least 2 - 3 hours per night, she's often up past her bedtime trying to get it all done (she is also very busy with swim team, piano and tennis, but she's learning GREAT time management skills through this).

My 5th and 9th graders get less than that. Tonight, my 5th grader only has 2 math pages to do, but that's because she's already done one assignment that's due on Friday and has tomorrow evening to complete another one due on Friday as well.

My 9th grader only had English written HW tonight, but he's expected to spend at least 15 mins per class reviewing today's lecture...so that *should* take an hour and a half at least. Whether he actually does this everyday is another story.

I'd say that 2 hours a night is normal. Once it gets up to 3 or more, it becomes stressful to the kids. But 2 hours should be manageable.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Oklahoma City on

I am up front from the beginning of the year, the kids have things they do outside of school and we will not do more than a minimal amount of work a couple of times per week. IF they get behind on work they are to stay in at recess and do it during school hours.

I will not waver on this. My oldest grandson went from one school to another in the same school district when he went back to live with his mom for a short time. He would come home every day with hours and hours and hours of work. He would work steady from the time he got home, eat at the desk, and still be working at bed time. I decided right then that I would not let these kids ever be subjected to that.

I honestly feel if the teacher cannot teach them the concepts they need to in the 8+ hours a day they have the kids then perhaps they need to refine their teaching skills and work out a better way of getting the kids to understand the material/

If the schools were held accountable like directors and producers do for the amount of hours per day that child actors can be at work then the kids at school would NEVER be legally allowed to have any homework. They would be over their allowed hours of work for a child who has a job. It's nuts if a teacher thinks they can do something else all day then send home the work they should have done during the day....well, it just sets me off.

I refuse to allow the kids to do more than an hour or so a week and will not do it ever. My friends who home school never assign homework unless it's a paper writing assignment that they need to go to the library to do. All other work is done while they are "in" class which is never more than a couple of hours per day. Why can they do it all and their kids are further ahead with better grades than the ones sitting in a classroom at least 8 hours per day and having hours of homework each day. That tells me they are just not getting taught the material.

So I tell the teacher in front of everyone in the beginning meeting where the teacher lays out the semester and her plans for the year. I tell them I don't allow homework for more than a few minutes each evening and then the kids are done. That we just don't have time outside of the 8+ hours per day they have set aside for doing their work.

So far the teachers have been sort of flabbergasted but not one has even lowered a grade because the homework wasn't done.

Our kids test in the 90+ percentile in reading, comprehension, and math. So if they want to try and flunk them for not sitting hours and hours doing useless work then they can try. The kids test scores show that not doing all that homework is not bad for them.



answers from Denver on

way too much. If you believe in homework (which I don't - there's no proven value to it), the rule of thumb is 10 minutes per grade year. your children should not have more than 1/2 to one hour for the three oldest unless they're on an ILP (slow learner plan).

either they're screwing around in class or their teachers have absolutely unreasonable expectations.

before you barge in to the teachers....
"The Homework Myth" will give you ammo as to why the teachers need to back off, way off. It is a well written book backed by a ton of research.

I have taken to previewing the homework and just "cancelling" that which is unnecessary. One child (3rd grade) has a brand new teacher who is fabulous but needs quite a bit of "training" from the parents - she assigned almost an hour worth of homework on choir/orchestra concert night (note that 75% of the class was performing in this two hour concert). needless to say, my child just didn't do the homework - didn't even take it out of her backpack, with my blessing. I emailed the teacher to explain. I guess the teacher was okay with it - she didn't email me back and my child said she didn't say anything to her.

anyway - get some facts (including if your children are not using their time wisely) and then have discussions with the teachers. And, if needed, simply teach your children the value of priorities and evaluating priorities - which may not be homework - dependent on what it is.

good luck.


answers from Grand Forks on

My son who is in grade two has to study his English and French spelling words and he does about 1/2 hour total of English and French reading each day. About once a week he will bring home a worksheet that takes about 15 minutes. My son in grade five does 1/2 hour French reading and 1/2 hour English reading a day, studies his French spelling and sometimes has a project to work on. If they do not finish an assignment at school they will have to bring it home, but they usually get their work done in class.

For Updates and Special Promotions
Follow Us

Related Questions