As you may recall from your elementary school years, homework assignments dished out to kids aren't always well thought. While some assignments are able to stump parents, this sheet that was apparently assigned to first graders is just asking for trouble. The kids are supposed to create a word that ends with "uck." Regardless, there are only so many letters in the alphabet, and eventually, some kid is going to choose "f" or "c" to fill in the blank.
A school district in Tennessee apologized Thursday for an "insensitive" homework assignment that asked students to pretend their families own slaves. A Tennessee school district apologized Thursday after a homework assignment asked students to pretend their "family owns slaves." Dr. Mike Looney, director of Williamson County schools, called the assignment "insensitive" and "wholly inappropriate," in an apology he issued on Twitter. "In short, the assignment was wholly inappropriate and doesn't reflect our district's commitment to treat all students with dignity and respect," the statement said. The assignment, which dealt with issues of slavery, immigration and child labor, was given to 8th-grade social studies students at Sunset Middle School in Williamson County.
Instead, it's overshadowed by a stack of homework that features, among other things, an assignment known as jiyū kenkyū (independent project). As the name suggests, jiyū kenkyū is an opportunity for pupils to pursue a project they're interested in. At the same time, however, it has become something of an ever-present headache for students, many of whom would typically spend a large chunk of their already homework-ridden vacation trying to figure out just what project they should undertake. This past summer, a 12-year-old student in Iwate Prefecture used this quandary to his advantage, coming up with an audacious plan that conveniently required him not to do any homework at all: to document the reaction of his family as they discover he has failed to keep up with his homework duties throughout the vacation. A hashtag that translates as "unbelievable independent project" recently went viral after the student's father shared a few entries of his son's journal, titled "How my family and myself reacted when all homework was ignored until the very last day," on Instagram.