OPINION: Vacation is a time to rest and relax, not to stress about homework

Going home for break with homework due afterward is an experience many students can relate to. Whether it’s a short worksheet or a big project, most have had to get through a task during a vacation.

These assignments impede one of the purposes of vacation time, which is to give students a chance to rest and spend time with their family. Thus, teachers should not give students work over breaks.

Many breaks are coordinated specifically to coincide with important holidays students celebrate. These events often involve getting together with relatives students may not be able to see every day. Generally, people want to spend as much time with their family members as possible unimpeded by homework. Assigning work during vacation just gets in the way of time with family and ultimately makes students and families irritated.

Some students may prioritize their time with family over their work. Choosing to spend time with family rather than completing vacation work will result in students either not doing their homework — opting for a zero on the assignment — or doing their homework as quickly as possible, focusing on timeliness rather than quality. Either choice yields the same result: a poor grade on the assignment, negatively affecting their overall grade for the class.

Not assigning work gives students a chance to relax, allowing them to come to school with newfound energy. Psychologist Francine Lederer found at her office in Los Angeles that even a 24-hour break increases motivation from workers, so an entire vacation period where no one has to worry about homework will definitely help student enthusiasm and participation at school.

Some may argue that assigning work over break is necessary to keep students on track for the year, but if organized properly, it is completely within a teacher’s power to avoid assigning work over break. The best way for teachers to handle breaks would be for them to assign any work due by the end of vacation one or more weeks before the break begins.

Rather than assigning work right before a break starts, teachers could give students plenty of notice, giving them ample time to finish the work before break. This method would satisfy the need for students to keep up with school, allow them to spend time with their family and rejuvenate.