Are schools putting too much on teens?

Teens struggle between the balance of homework, sports and their personal lives. (Photo courtesy of Creative Commons)

Teens struggle between the balance of homework, sports and their personal lives. (Photo courtesy of Creative Commons)

Natalie Dupuis, Assigning Editor

Teenagers today have a lot going on and don’t have much time for themselves. 

Students have multiple classes a day for five days a week. Homework is given out to students every night and teenagers have to balance all their classes’ homework. 

Some people take advanced placement (AP) and honors classes like myself. I’m currently taking AP Psychology and it requires a lot of time and effort. Students in the class have to pay attention and do all the work to perform well on tests and quizzes. All material learned in class will be tested on the College Board exam in May. 

Honors Algebra II isn’t as time-consuming as AP Psychology, but there’s still effort required. Higher-level math classes are more time consuming because of the new topics introduced to students. People who are currently taking Pre-Calculus have said it’s hard and confusing. Having to figure out what you’re doing takes time when completing homework. 

Even though that may only be two classes, students have an additional four classes with homework as well. Along with homework, most people participate in sports. Sports take up a big chunk of students’ time after school during the week and on the weekends. Some even participate in multiple sports throughout the school year leading to homework having to be done late at night after practices. 

“A 2013 study found that high school students can experience serious mental and physical health problems, from higher stress levels to sleep deprivation, when assigned too much homework” (Terada).

For athletes, a high risk of injuries can occur. Those who feel pressure or anxiety may ignore the pain and continue to play (Morin). 

Having homework from most classes, students that get home late after practices have to stay up late completing it all, doing only some and not doing the rest or not doing any homework at all. For those who decide not to do it will ask others to send them the answers or ask at school to complete it before class starts. This can lead to an increase in cheating because students would rather ask for the answers from someone else than do it themselves. 

I’ve been asked multiple times for the answers to homework because there are people that don’t do it. Now some people may just not do the homework because they don’t want to, but most people are busy with things going on in there lives. 

Students may stay up late completing their homework don’t think it’ll take as long as it really does and they overestimate how long it’s going to take. Students may also try to go to bed and then wake up early in the morning to work on it before they get ready for school. Some can get up to complete it, but there are some people that fall back asleep and not get to it at all. 

Whether they stay up late or wake up early, students are sleep deprived. “It may seem reasonable to assign 30 minutes of daily homework, but across six subjects, that’s three hours” (Terada).

Along with sports, some teenagers may participate in clubs after school too. Some clubs may meet more than once a week and can result in traveling for competitions like sports. 

The weeks drag on and feel nothing but long. Once Friday is reached, teenagers want to relax and make plans. It’s an all-weekend thing until Sunday because students then have to do all their homework and start all over again with another busy week of school including extracurricular activities.