THE STUDENT'S KNOWLEDGE acquisition and skills development should not be limited in the four corners of the classroom where lessons and activities are time-constrained, and most of the time, teacher-centered. For that reason, it is important for teachers to employ mechanisms which will help their students to speed up the learning process, and at the same time, train their students to study independently. One of the many mechanisms that can be used to achieve these goals is to give Homework/Assignments.

Merriam-Webster Dictionary defined Homework as “an assignment given to a student to be completed outside the regular class period.”  Example of Homework/Assignment includes book reports, research projects, term papers, practice exercises, the popular “question and answer” about the upcoming lessons, etc. But, regardless of the type of homework assignment to be given, it is imperative for teachers to follow a general guideline in order for the homework/assignment to be effective in the learning experience of their students.

Here are some practical suggestions on how to give homework/assignment effectively:

  • Homework/Assignment must be in sync with the current lessons being discussed inside the class.  
  • Identify the purpose of the Homework/Assignment and make it known to the students.  This is a crucial element because according to Prof. Allison Boye, Ph.D. of the Texas Tech University, “Being transparent with your students and explaining why you are asking them to complete a given assignment can ultimately help motivate them to complete the assignment more thoughtfully.”
  • Use open-ended questions (Gardner, 2005). This will allow the students to develop their critical and analytical thinking skills.
  • Create homework/assignment that apply skills taught in the classroom to real-life situations within the home and community (Self, 2009).
  • Homework/Assignment should not be given everyday because this will destroy the balance between the student's school and family life.  A frequent homework assignment can "disrupt domestic routines and undermine relationships between parents and children and between spouses (Marling, 2003)."
  • Do not give too many questions or pratice exercises in your homework/assignment, because this will overburden the students, which, in effect, will destroy their focus, hampering their capacity to think with clarity.
  • Give FLEXIBLE guidelines on how students should accomplish their homework/assignment. This way, the student's creative mind will be utilized and enhanced.


About the Author:

Randolf Flores, the contributor, is a graduate of Bachelor of Science Major in Biology at the Far Eastern University, Manila. He is currently taking up Master of Arts in Science Education at the Rizal Technological University, Mandaluyong City.


Boye, A. (2010). How Do I Create Meaningful and Effective Assignments? Retrieved January 10, 2014, from

Dudley-Marling, C. (2003, March 7). How school troubles come home: The impact of homework on families of struggling learners. Current Issues in Education [On-line], 6(4). Retrieved January 10, 2014, from

Gardner, T.  (2005, June 12). Ten Tips for Designing Writing Assignments. Traci’s Lists of Ten. Retrieved January 15, 2014, from

Self, N. (October 1, 2009). Designing Effective Homework. ASCD Express, 4 (26). Retrieved January 18, 2014, from



The suggestions given by the author of the article are indeed practical for classroom-use. I believe that one of the neglected areas in the teaching-learning process by students is the homework or assignment. Because of the many activities that takes place, teachers have the tendency to leave the assignment and proceed with the discussion. A good suggestion is that teachers need also to think of the practicality of checking. Assignments are still part of assessment, thus, it is very important to check it for the sake of knowing not only the achievement of students but also the willingness of students to learn. If we will not check the assignment, then it is also useless to give an assignment. There is big implication among learners when assignments are not being checked. They will think that assignments are not being checked and being graded so they will just neglect it. Thus, there is a need to enforce the giving of assignments with proper procedure.

Due to limited time in the classroom, the chances of NOT discussing some lessons enumerated in the syllabus or lesson plan is highly probable. That is why, teachers should give homework activities to their students in order to accelerate the learning process. In turn, students must diligently follow the instructions or guidelines given by their teachers on how to do the homework assigned, because it is in this mutual exchange that the true aim of homework can be achieved.

I suggest that the homework given to students should be very creative so as to ignite the artistic and creative minds of the students. This can also provide a gauge for the teacher on how to assist a particular kid on his/her area of difficulty.

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