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I caught up with a few students at M-A returning from the 2016 summer vacation to hear their views on summer homework. All of the students I spoke with did not finish doing their homework until the end of summer, whether strategic or not. Everyone agreed that summer homework is an annoyance, but people voiced differing opinions on whether or not summer homework should be assigned.

Ally Feely (AF) (junior) 8/9/16
Nathalie Camens (NC): What did you do on an average summer day?
AF: On an average summer day, I went to work, then I played water polo. I went home, then I went out with friends.
NC: Did you make a plan for your summer homework in the beginning?
AF: No, I just kind of forgot about it, and then I remembered a few weeks ago, so I’m kind of just suffocating.
NC: Have you finished it?
AF: I have six chapters and one more book to read, and school starts in nine days.
NC: Do you think schools should give summer homework? Why or why not?
AF: No…I think students should be allowed to have their summer since we’re always at school stressing.

“It’s our one time to be homework-free.”

Esveide Gonzalez (EG) (junior) 8/11/16
NC: What did you have to do for your summer homework?
EG: I had to read one book, The Tortilla Curtain for AS English III.
NC: Did you make a plan for your summer homework?
EG: Yeah, I decided I would do it towards the end of the summer because I would remember it better that way, rather than doing it in beginning, or else I would forget about it.

“I’d forget the material before school started.”

NC: How did your plan turn out?
EG: It turned out better than expected because it’s a week before school and I still haven’t started, so it’s going to be really fresh in my mind.
NC: Do you think schools should give summer homework? Why or why not?
EG: To an extent I think it’s important to review material before school starts– at least an introduction so we know what we’re going to be learning about– but I think teachers know how much work they give so they should not assign homework they know is going take more than an hour or something, or a lot of time.

Anushka Patnaik (AP) (junior) 8/19/16
NC: Did you make a plan for your summer homework?
AP: Yes, but I did not follow through at all.
NC: What was the plan?
AP: To separate each part of my homework and balance it out throughout the summer, but I ended up doing every single thing at two o’clock in the morning the night before [school started].
NC: What classes were you doing summer homework for?
AP: Chemistry (AP), English (AP Language and Composition), and APUSH (AP U.S. History).
NC: Which was the hardest?
AP: Probably APUSH.
NC: Do you think schools should give summer homework? Why or why not?
AP: I mean, I do think that they should give summer homework because…you don’t retain a lot of the stuff that you learn in the year before, and you forget how to do a lot of stuff, and then you also kind of lose touch with basic skills like note-taking and reading quickly, or not even reading quickly, but reading well. So that’s why I think summer homework lets you practice that over the summer so you’re not super– I guess– confused, and you don’t struggle as much when school starts; but I still hate it, as does everyone.

“Everyone hates summer homework.”

Student who wishes to remain anonymous (A) (sophomore) 8/19/16
NC: Did you make a plan for your summer homework?
Anonymous: Yes.
NC: How did you execute that plan?
A: I didn’t really end up following it. I told myself I was going to do a certain amount of pages every day and I ended up not doing a couple pages for three days, and then doing a ton of pages.
NC: What homework assignments were you supposed to do for what classes?
A: I had AS Chem, the reading for AS English II, and then AP European History, which was awful.
NC: Was [AP European History] the hardest one?
A: Yeah.
NC: Do you think schools should give summer homework? Why or why not?
A: No, because it took away from the other things I was doing that summer.

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