Friend or Foe: How Aussie parents feel about homework

While it’s safe to assume most kids would put homework in the “stuff I don’t want to do, but have to” pile, we wanted to know the parents’ opinion. Here’s what our latest research found.

aussie parent helping with homework
Cluey Learning Wednesday, 23 March 2022

Homework can benefit kids in many ways, from teaching time management skills and organisation to self-motivation and independent learning. But where there are pros, there are cons, like piling more work onto the end of a long day, not to mention the increased level of stress homework brings some students. Plus, it takes time away from extracurriculars, family, and good old-fashioned fun, which are just as important. Some studies have looked into whether homework is even an effective method of learning at all.

Regardless of the negatives, 63% of parents surveyed believe that homework is necessary in today’s world. Most of them get involved to some degree, either through supervision, helping, or let’s face it, sometimes even doing their child’s homework. A little extra help from a parent can be valuable, especially for a child who struggles. But many of us need help, to help our kids.

In fact, nearly three in five parents turn to online resources to help understand their child’s schoolwork enough to be able to assist with it

Dr Selina Samuels, Chief Learning Officer at Cluey warns parents to be careful when it comes to online content. “There is a problem, though, with relying on Teacher Google when it comes to helping your child with their homework. You may come across an approach which is completely different to how they have been taught at school. And we often hear from parents that the resources they find online end up confusing everyone further.”

Studies show that the quality of parental homework involvement trumps quantity. But finding the right content to help in the right way can be really difficult. Not only do curricula and syllabi differ by state, but books and websites can be out of date or offer poor quality information.

“At Cluey, we believe in providing the right help in the right way,” Dr Samuels says. “All our programs are mapped to the Australian National Curriculum and aligned with what students are learning in the classroom. Our aim is to demystify what students are learning at school and tailor the explanation to the needs of the individual child.”

Maths was found to be the subject that left parents baffled the most, with questions like “how to teach algebra” and “how to teach long division” identified as the most searched. 

Since most of what we learn at school is forgotten by the time we become adults, some parents simply don’t remember or understand the concepts well enough to teach them. Others understand them too much and may struggle to explain concepts to a young child.


RELATED: Want to put your maths memory to the test? Try our latest Maths quiz with questions every parent should be able to answer.


With 67% of parents worried they won’t be able to effectively help their kids with homework this year, many are turning to the experts. 

Dr Samuels offers some words of advice: “If your child brings home a question from school that you don’t understand, there are plenty of people who do. Finding an expert in the areas where they need help will not only be great for your child, but will also mean that you no longer have to be an instant expert on everything!”

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