Be flexible in completing homework

I do not think that too much school homework is the chief reason that children do not get enough sleep (Ensure homework load doesn't keep students up at night by Mr Alex Yeo Eng Buan; March 11).

The other reasons can span from academic ones - like attending enrichment and tuition classes - to non-academic activities, like playing mobile phone games or working a part-time job.

However, I feel that the standard homework that is given to students may not be suitable for all learners.

Most of the time, the same homework is given to the entire cohort.

Those who are more academically inclined may find the homework too basic, and doing the questions over and over again does not add value to their learning.

For those who are slower in absorbing knowledge, the homework may be challenging and take an excruciatingly long time to complete.

In this case, the solution should not be cutting down the quantity of homework, but looking for teachers or tutors to clarify their doubts first.

I suggest that teachers allow students more flexibility in the completion of homework. Homework may still be given out, but whether students want to complete it is at their own discretion.

As pedagogy advances, we now know that there are many types of learners who have different individual learning styles.

Students also have different commitments (such as training for competitions) and cannot consistently complete all homework on time.

The society focuses on the end result, and homework is just a means to an end - for students to understand the content taught and to solve problems correctly during examinations.

Compulsively filling up worksheets is meaningless if students burn the midnight oil every day but end up learning nothing.

Doing homework may not be the best way for all. As long as students are happy and learning at their own pace, and can produce decent results, the purpose of education is met.

Qu Aohan (Ms)