Non-Graded Homework: How To Get It Done

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    Homework is a near-universally reviled task. However, homework completion is linked to achievement for middle- and high-schoolers. What’s the purpose of homework, and what are the general expectations? This article refers to non-graded homework only.

    Why Assign Homework?

    • While the type of homework depends on the teacher and subject, teachers typically assign non-graded homework to deepen their students’ understanding of a topic.  
    • Often, there isn’t enough class time to master a concept. Teachers depend on this work to provide students with individual practice, as they can assign exercises designed to make students think critically or creatively about each problem. 

    Is Homework Really Mandatory?

    • Many high-school teachers don’t check to see if you’ve completed your non-graded homework. Always be aware of each of your teachers’ individual policies, as it varies from teacher to teacher. 
    • This might make it seem like homework is optional, but depth of understanding often can’t be achieved without practice. 
    • To work smarter, not harder, complete enough non-graded homework to master the subject. This requires you to know yourself and your learning style. 
    • So, for example, if your math teacher assigns you a problem set, and it only takes completing three-quarters of the problems for you to fully grasp the process, you can call it a day. If you need extra practice, ask your teacher for more practice problems or talk to them outside of school hours for help. 

    No-Homework Policies

    • No-homework policies have been instituted at the elementary-school level in some schools. These avoid busywork and give elementary-schoolers time to be kids.  
    • If you think the students at your school could benefit from a modified homework style, talk to your peers, teachers, and administration on how you could bring about change. 

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    Angela Qian


    Senior at Dulaney High school. Editor-in-Chief of Sequel literary arts magazine and Baltimore County student council president.


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