Miss, A Lion Stole My Homework

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Tech-savvy schoolchildren are coming up with more extravagant excuses for failing to submit homework on time, according to new research, which found that the average British teacher hears at least 20 different homework excuses a week.

Three quarters of teachers said they are now hearing more obscure and tech-laden excuses, even though the same technology can now protect all of a kid’s work.  Eight in ten teachers believe kids regularly attempt to pull the wool over their eyes by blaming modern gadgets that the pupils believe older staff members will have failed to master. 

The research by online backup service, Mozy, discovered that while 78 per cent of pupils are now submitting school work typed on computers, eight in ten teachers said this has made it easier for kids to blame technological faults. 

Whilst six out of ten children have uttered the legendary, ‘my dog ate it’, the most common excuses for late homework include ‘I finished my homework but deleted it by accident’, ‘the internet was down’ and ‘my computer crashed and I lost it’.

The more bizarre fibs included one from a boy who tried to explain to his teacher that a lion had taken his homework.

Claire Galbois-Alcaix of Mozy, which carried out the study of 500 teachers and 1,000 pupils, said: “Technology and computing has changed the way we conduct every aspect of our lives, and our research has discovered that many schoolchildren are using technological errors, such as computer crashes or accidently deleting work, as the perfect modern-day excuse to get out of homework. 

"Unfortunately for these switched-on kids, our online backup service, MozyHome, now means that there’s no excuse for losing work on a computer, as parents can ensure their children’s school work is completely protected."

The study found the average teacher hears four homework excuses every day, and 74 per cent of teachers have noticed an upsurge in the number of pupils blaming technology for not doing homework.

It’s not just the computers at fault, students also accuse teachers for their homework woes with a massive eight in ten teachers hearing the modern-day chestnut: ‘I got a bounce-back email when I tried sending it to you’. Interestingly, students believe that P.E., English and art teachers are the most lenient when it comes to dishing out discipline to schoolchildren.

On the whole though, teachers are still seeing through many excuses. Of the 1,000 children aged six to 15 surveyed, a quarter have been found out after making up reasons for failing to hand in their work.

According to the study, some of the more extravagant reasons for late homework included ‘the letters on my keyboard were stuck and it kept writing ‘eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee’, ‘my goldfish ate it’ and ‘someone mugged me for it’.

TOP 20 MOST COMMON EXCUSES

1.        I emailed it to you, but I got a bounce-back email

2.        I finished my homework but then I deleted it by accident

3.        The dog ate it

4.        My computer crashed and I lost it

5.        My printer broke

6.        I finished my homework but was unable to save it

7.        My printer ran out of ink

8.        My internet was down so I could not do any research/email homework/access assignment

9.        I spilt my drink on the computer and it broke

10.     My house was burgled and my computer was nicked

11.     I couldn't connect my laptop to a printer

12.     My computer was hacked and a virus destroyed my hard-drive

13.     Windows Vista crashed my laptop and deleted the programme

14.     Spilt my dinner over it

15.     I lost my laptop

16.     Accidently stuck it in the washing machine

17.     It fell out of my bag as I walked to school

18.     The letters on my keyboard have worn out so couldn't type

19.     Blew out of my hand

20.     I put it on top of the TV and the TV blew up

MOST BIZARRE EXCUSES

  • My goldfish ate it
  • My pet horse ate it
  • My keyboard got snapped in half
  • A lion took it
  • I left it in the sun too long and the ink faded
  • The dog spilt cake on it
  • It accidently got put on the bonfire
  • I put it in the fridge so that I would remember it when I got the milk out for my cereal but I had toast that morning
  • I was in a car crash
  • I was walking through the park and a bee stung me so I ran to save myself and dropped my homework
  • The police took it
  • I dropped it in the river and it got caught by the current
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