"DOWN WITH HOMEWORK!" was the slogan on Bart Simpson’s tee-shirt that provoked the schoolhouse riot at Springfield Elementary, ultimately leading Principal Skinner to impose a uniform dress code. The episode featuring Bart’s anti-homework sentiment, “Team Homer,” aired on Sunday, Jan. 7, 1996.
Since then (and long before then) countless children have suffered the slings and arrows of outrageous homework fortune: decimals, fractions, pre-algebra, algebra I (algebra II!), trigonometry, calculus, chemistry, history, government, reading, writing, essays, and so on ad infinitum (Latin!). And for each assignment, children are ten times more skilled at concocting excuses for why their homework was not complete.
Here are some gems that if you didn’t use as a child, you certainly should have:
- “I have a solar-powered calculator and it was too cloudy.”
- “It was in my back pocket and a pickpocket stole it.”
- “I fell asleep trying to do it and I just woke up 10 minutes ago and was nearly late for school.”
But nowadays kids have no excuse because, thanks to the King County Library System, there is free homework help through its Study Zone program, offered at many of its library branches.
The Study Zone is a well-established, yet still growing homework assistance program staffed by over 250 volunteer tutors who collectively serve 12,000+ hours annually at libraries across King County and online. Tutors offer help in all academic subjects, languages studies, standardized test preparation, preparation for completing the GED and fundamental skills-building in literacy and math.
The program is consistent and accessible. The Study Zone is free for all K-12 students and is offered on a “drop-in” basis at thirty-six different libraries across King County at varying two-hour increments. There are more than 125 scheduled tutoring sessions available throughout the county each week. These in-person tutor sessions are offered in addition to the program’s online tutors, who can be reached from any computer, at home, school or in a library.
Plus, there is no limit to the frequency with which a student may participate. This breadth of availability permits students of all backgrounds, regardless of financial constraint, academic skill, transportation limitations, or schedule conflicts, to have meaningful access to a valuable and helpful service.
In the end, the Study Zone represents what makes communities thrive: people showing up to help each other. In the case of the Study Zone, tutors show up with no limitation on the lengths to which a child’s educational horizon can be expanded.
Until Bart Simpson comes up with a catchier slogan, kids are stuck sticking it out and getting the homework done…that is, unless of course, you know an excuse that has actually worked?
You can see more information about the Study Zone by clicking here.