Not so long ago, every school child in the country could expect a September trip to the stationers to stock up on coloured pencils, ink cartridges and bizarre geometry sets that did something complicated an mathematical.
However, kids today scoff (in a derisory rather than tuck-shop fashion) at these antiquated tools of the past, with 78 per cent of teachers demanding homework is done on a computer.
As a result, in a survey of 500 teachers, Mozy found that the three things that teachers thought would be least useful to kids in the next five years were:
• Access to a public library
• A fountain pen
• Times tables
For the school kids of the techno generation, the future involves a different type of back-to-school shopping, with teachers saying that, in the next five years, the top three tools that kids will need are:
• Internet access
• Software to protect their work – such as antivirus and online backup
• A dictionary
Other tools like calculators, encyclopaedias and protractors are also to be consigned to the rubbish bin with less than a fifth of teachers rating any of these as essential tools for homework in the coming years.
The best thing about this is that backup is free – or it is with Mozy if you click here. Which leaves us with just one problem: how do you carve your name on your ruler without a compass?
Calculators - consigned to history (but not history lessons)
In a world where free online backup means that anyone can protect their work and access it from anywhere, you’d think that the days of kids using excuses like ‘the dog ate my homework’ would be a thing of the past. Yet, new research from Mozy showed that 60 per cent of pupils still try to blame the family pooch for not being able to hand in their work.
Even so, 72 per cent of teachers said that pupils were getting more creative with their excuses and coming up with increasingly extravagant reasons for not finishing their assignments.
We asked 1,000 kids what excuses they’d invented and here is a list of some of the more bizarre…
- My dog had a pee on it
- My mum sheared it
- It accidentally got put on the bonfire
- My horse ate it
- My niece was sick on it
- I couldn’t hear you when you set it
- The dog spilt cake on it
- I sprayed it with deodorant and the chemicals shrivelled the paper
- I dropped it in the bath
- I put it in the fridge so that I would remember it when I got the milk out for my cereal in the morning… but I had toast instead
- My chinchilla weed on it
- I accidentally did a poo on it
- I was by the window when I was doing it and it blew away when I went to get a glass of squash
- A snail ate it
- I was walking through the park when a bee stung me so I ran to save myself and dropped my homework
- I dropped it in a river and it was carried away by the current
- My goldfish ate it
- I was on holiday in Martorg on Mars when the assignment was set
- My house caught fire
- My cat ate it – and then threw up on my spare copy
- I left it on the kitchen worktop and it must have stuck to a ready meal before it went into the microwave because the next time I saw it, it was burned to my placemat
- My grandma took it on holiday
- The letters on my keyboard got stuck so all it says is eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee
- My cat broke my keyboard
- My silly brother drew on it
- I couldn’t get home to do my homework last night as there are really bad road works at the moment
- My sister was sick on it
- A pigeon pooed on it
- It was stolen
- I died
- My family was really hungry and we ate it
- A lion took it
- Someone mugged me and took it
- It was confiscated by airport security
Back in the real world, the research uncovered that half of all the kids polled had genuinely lost their homework due to a technical error on their computer. So, to keep homework loss purely fictional, Mozy offers everyone 2GB of free back up – that’s enough to back up about 80,000 two-page Word documents. Just click here to get Mozy.