Workload affecting teen sleep patterns


“The most recent national poll shows that more than 87 percent of U.S. high school students get far less than the recommended eight to 10 hours of sleep each night.” Christopher Silas Neal

Anabelle Gonzalez, Reporter

You end up getting home at 8:oo p.m. and still have to do the load of homework you got for that day along with missing assignments. You find yourself dozing off in the middle of your math homework. Eventually, you go to sleep at almost midnight, and before you know it  your alarm clock rings “BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP.”  

In Stanford Medicine’s most recent national poll, it shows that more than 87 percent of U.S. high school students get far less than the recommended eight to ten hours of sleep each night, as stated by This is the leading cause of stress for students. This lack of sleep could be due to large amounts of homework. Along with after-school programs and sports games, this is a lot for student to handle.

Sleep deprivation increases the likelihood teens will suffer a myriad of negative consequences, including poor grades, drowsy-driving incidents, anxiety, depression, thoughts of suicide and even suicide attempts. Therefore, lack of sleep is a serious threat to their health, safety and academic success.

Sophomore Cade Smith only gets a total of “3-6 hours of sleep a night.” That is less than half of the suggested 9 hours of sleep recommended for the average high school teenager. He says his reasons are about “90% homework and 10% myself.”

Fatima Moreira, freshman to the iSchool, struggles with the same thing. She consistently receives “4-6 hours of sleep per night.” which is once again less than the recommended hours.. Fatima explains, “It’s mostly because of school work because i do get a lot but i think it’s me too because sometimes i just get tired of doing my homework and I go do something else.”, after a while your eyes start to drop and all you want to do is fall asleep right then and there, but you know you have to get it done so you distract yourself for a bit just to reawaken yourself and continue. Sometimes the teachers just don’t understand that you have more than one class to do homework for. They just don’t care i guess.

Fatima ends with, “There are some teachers that understand that students have other classes and other stuff to do but there’s usually 1 or 2 teachers that love to just give you a lot every night.”

English teacher Ms. Mangano agrees that students don’t have a chance to sleep very much at all. She estimates students sleep around “5-6 hours” per night. Students usually come in showing that they haven’t had much sleep the night prior.

Some teachers do keep in consideration that students have other classes and extracurriculars that shorten the time available for them to complete their homework, “the homework doesn’t take that long. I try to keep it to a half hour limit, and for lengthier homework they would have a couple of days to complete,” says Ms. Mangano.

While some teachers give homework simply for the purpose of giving homework, Ms.Mangano believes that the homework should be “relevant and important to future lessons.” There are some teachers that give lots of homework with no reason behind it, only increasing the workload that they have to do at the end of the day.

Is sleep even possible? Between sports, clubs, homework, school is more tiring than a workout at the gym. Sleep deprivation is the leading cause of stress in a teenager’s life. This can lead to poor grades and failing classes due to the child’s inability to focus in class. High school students are getting such little sleep which can lead to bad grades, this can cause major setbacks in the future.