A Prescription for Peace

An educational theorist urges parents to treat homework as an opportunity, not a threat

The English and French met memorably on the battlefield of Agincourt. During the Civil War, the North and South shed fraternal blood at Gettysburg. For many parents and children, the encounter over homework bears the mark of a similar armed struggle: Who is in control? What weapons should be used? What are the spoils of victory, the costs of loss? And the ultimate question of warfare: What is it all for?

I've had to ponder these questions as a child psychologist, an educational reformer and a father of four. I've got the battle scars to prove it. Perhaps the chief lesson...

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