The Alpha Alternative School in Toronto, Ontario is celebrating 40 years. It's a school that doesn't give homework and doesn't ever test it's students. The students, parents and teachers are in together on deciding what the children learn. Some studies are working with other kids and going out in nature and learning.

One thing I noticed reading about this school and what the kids (who are adults) had to say and what they are doing now. They are all doing well in their lives and are all creative adults. They all talk about having a strong sense of self, working in a community and whaty their part in society is. They all talk about being able to interact with other people and that they don't fear authority and don't feel oppressed from their education.

Elise Soal of Yahoo! shares this Flannery Fielding attended Alpha from ages 4 to 11. She's a Nurse Prac­ti­tioner in Pal­lia­tive Care. Fielding credits the school for her love of reading, but says when she transitioned to a traditional high school she never "got the hang of homework." She says, "I think most kids at Alpha had a sense of supe­ri­or­ity about the free­dom we had-to learn, to play, to be our­selves — although for me and my friends, that even­tu­ally trans­formed into a kind of dread about what we might be miss­ing, how hard it was going to be for us in the 'real world.'"

Elise Soal of Yahoo!d goes on to show others, Mor­gan Jones-Phillips attended Alpha from ages 4 to 9. He's a Para­medic and also does stand-up comedy. He recalls play­ing tag and going to the park and looking for four-leaf clovers. "My under­stand­ing of what made it dif­fer­ent was a per­ceived lack of for­mal struc­ture. I don't remem­ber ever hav­ing to do any­thing. This may sound like com­plete chaos; cer­tainly if you let the kids in a reg­u­lar school plan their day, it would be chaos, but I think that because that was our nor­mal, we cre­ated our own day. We, as stu­dents, took it upon our­selves to cre­ate the struc­ture that wasn't being imposed on us," he says.

Could that be the wave of the future, would you want your kids to give up on homework. My question is, does homework really help kids learn? Why can't they have time to be kids when they are young and have them buckle down more as they get older?

What do you think?

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