The 10 Most Common Homework Excuses Teacher's Receive (And How to Come up with Better Ones)

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You might wonder why a teacher would want to help you with “I forgot my homework” excuses. It’s simple. I’m tired of hearing the same excuses every time I collect an assignment. I want you to be more creative. The top homework excuses of the past no longer give me the thrill of detective work like they used to. I’ve already figured out a way to shoot them down, to humiliate you, and make you feel silly. I feel like General Zaroff must have felt in “The Most Dangerous Game.” I need a new challenge, so here’s a list of top homework excuses, why you should never use them, and subtle changes you can make to be more effective.

10 Most Common Excuses & How to Improve Them

  1. I forgot my homework: That’s weak! You can do better than “I forgot my homework,” Can’t you? Even if you did forget your homework, come up with something more creative than this. Here’s a little trick: “I forgot my homework, but my mom said she’ll bring it in during lunch/after school.” This will buy you a few hours. Do the assignment during lunch and bring it in after school.
  2. My printer doesn’t work: Come on! Did your printer work last week? Did it work the day before yesterday? Or did it mysteriously stop working right when you were about to print out your assignment? There are millions of functioning printers in the world. There are probably several at your school, including one in your teacher’s classroom. They’re not going to buy this. Try this one instead: “My printer ran out of ink last night. Can I e-mail it to you when I get home?” This will buy you some time and your teacher isn’t going to check too closely. Just have it e-mailed before 5:00 and you’re safe.
  3. I didn’t know it was due today: Are you serious? It’s been on the board for a week-and-a-half. It’s been mentioned every day at the start of class. It’s on the class website. The other 36 kids in the class knew it was due today. Don’t ever try this one. Even if you didn’t know it was due, you should have.
  4. I lost it: Try using that one with the power company. Try “my backpack was stolen” or “I left my binder on the bus.”
  5. I was absent: Yea, you were sick 5 days ago when I assigned it, but you’ve been here every day since. Didn’t it occur to you that you needed to find out what you missed before it was due. Try “I was really sick last night and was unable to finish it. If you want, I can bring a note from my Mom.”
  6. Start crying: This is actually really effective if you’re a girl. If you’re not a girl, don’t try this, nor should you try its sister excuse: “it’s that time of the month.”
  7. I cleaned out my notebook and threw it away: Maybe you should clean out your head before using this classic. Nobody believes you threw anything out of your notebook because it’s exploding with papers. Use the “I got my notebook stolen” instead.
  8. I didn’t do it: Some teachers may give you some points for honesty, but they already know you didn’t do it.
  9. I had a game last night: Most teachers will give you the “so, you think ___________ (name of sport) is more important than _______ (name of class)?” response. If you’re teacher is a huge sports fan and if your team won and if you played an integral role in the victory, you may get a break.
  10. I never got the homework: The 38 other students in class all got the assignment and began working on it immediately, but you neither got the assignment nor bothered to ask what the rest of the class was doing?

As you can see, teachers have wised up to your antics. No longer are the traditional excuses gonna cut it. It’s time to evolve into the next generation and challenge your teacher to keep up with your creative homework dodging.

This post is part of the series: Homework Excuses

Find the best, the worst, the most popular, and the funniest homework excuses with just a few clicks of the mouse.

  1. The 10 Best Homework Excuses
  2. The 10 Most Common “I Forgot my Homework” Excuses
  3. Funny Homework Excuses