Is homework really necessary?

“Hey sweetie, watcha up to?”

“Homework.”

“Aww, that sucks. But good on you!”

pause

“Dad?”

“Yes?”

“Do I have to do homework?”

“Oh sweetie, homework is such an important part of a good education. It helps reinforce what you’ve learned at school. And it shows you things you might not have understood. I always did my homework, and it really helped me later on to get that habit. You know, at Uni or at work, you’re going have to learn to learn by yourself! Ask anyone with a higher degree. Sure, I mean, not all homework is equally essential, but if you don’t do it you’re going to be lost.”

“So … what you’re saying is that homework is not really essential?”

(This post is not about homework.)

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Different types of learners. Some people have to meditate on classwork at home and do home activities themselves to get the material fully in. However, modifying one’s attention could keep one with classwork at school or on Zoom session or whatnot being enough though!

It should be like:

I might be way off in how I reply to this but the way I interpret your post is do I need to reflect on dhamma talks or sutta’s to really absorb and understand the material.
I’d say yes it is incredibly important to reflect on them to develop right view, but for me it happens automatically when I get interested in a sutta or listen to a sutta explained online, I then enjoy reflecting on its meaning and details and how it related to other aspects of the dhamma.

On a similar note one thing I’ve been doing recently is memorizing and reciting a couple of passages like one fine night and the metta sutta and the recollection of the buddha.
I’ve found it’s a nice way to put myself into a positive mindset and remind myself of the dhamma. Or something to bring up some right view before I start meditating.

I think memorizing important and commonly occurring teachings and similes is really important too.

As a parent homework is a tough analogy. So much homework is pointless or busy-work. There’s no coordination between teachers overall homework load. I don’t overly worry about whether my son gets his homework done.

That said I like to see passionate engagement - those things he is continuously reading and investigating and learning more about.

So yes to the importance of taking learning home, pursuing it independently. Unfortunately homework is too embedded in an often problematic system and approach to learning, so the analogy obscures more than clarifies for me.

Honestly, I’m still not sure I understood correctly what you are getting at. :rofl:

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Yeah, not sure what Bhante’s recent vaguebooking is referring to either.

But it does remind me a bit of Ezra Klein’s parting words on leaving Vox for the NYT. He stressed that interviewees (and listeners) can tell when the interviewer has “done their homework”: i.e. actually read the book, thought about it, engaged with the ideas versus when a podcast host is just phoning it in, reacting to a book’s marketing copy or, worse, regurgitating talking points they heard elsewhere.

To have thoughtful conversations requires taking the time. But oh, the time it takes to take your time!

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