Why Doing All of Your Homework is a Waste of Time

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As I’m sure you can tell from the title, I’m kicking this semester off with a bit of a controversial opinion: doing all of your homework is a waste of time.

As a high school math student, you know how overwhelming and time-consuming homework can be. But have you ever stopped to think about whether it’s all necessary? Are you spending hours upon hours each week completing homework that’s not actually helping you learn or retain information? 

The answer may surprise you:

Yes, a lot of your assigned homework is a waste of time.

Don’t get me wrong, homework is an important and useful tool in solidifying what you covered in class. By practicing the material on your own, you better internalize the concepts and retain the information for longer.

That said, let’s face it – homework often fails to challenge you. Most teachers assign homework that is similar to what you covered in class, which means it’s unlikely to expand your thinking. Think about all the a) through e) style problem sets. Beyond being incredibly boring it usually means you do the first few problem sets and quit before you get to the more challenging concepts and word problems, leaving you unprepared for tests and assignments.

On the flip side, if you actually do every single problem, you end up with no time for your other classes and no time to relax and recharge. This is when homework stops being a tool to enhance your learning and instead leads to burnout and negative consequences for your mental health.

So then what’s the solution? 

It’s simple: Prioritize quality over quantity. Instead of doing every single homework question you’re given, focus on the ones that are most important and relevant to the content you’re learning. Ask your teacher to provide more challenging material, or seek out additional resources on your own. By doing this, you’ll be able to focus your time and energy on the tasks that are most likely to help you learn and grow.

“By prioritizing quality over quantity, you can focus your time and energy on the tasks that are most likely to help you learn and grow.”

So, the next time you’re faced with a boring, far-too-long homework assignment, ask yourself the following:

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