Thoughts on Small Class Sizes
I used to be a teacher in Britain, and I enjoyed the idea that our classrooms were small. That was because as a young teacher you're mostly teaching small classes of around 20 students or fewer, but now things have changed. If you're teaching in schools where there are lots of teenagers, especially boys (which is most schools), then your class can be much bigger than that??30 people or more. It makes me wonder: Is this good for students? Is it better for them to learn from someone who knows them well rather than from someone who doesn't? Or does being part of such a large group help build their confidence as they prepare for university life?
Small class sizes in the UK are getting smaller, and it's creating new challenges for teachers.
In the UK, the average class size is 30 students. This can be difficult for teachers to manage, and it's a problem for parents as well. It's also a problem for students in the classroom because it means that less individual attention is available to each student. While there are ways of overcoming this issue??such as using different teaching styles or grouping students into smaller groups??the fact remains that larger classes mean fewer opportunities for one-on-one time with teachers.
In many cases, small class sizes are also beneficial for both students and educators because they create closer bonds between them as well as more efficient use of resources (including money). However, if you're looking at schools outside of your country then you might want to consider how big or small their classrooms tend to be before deciding which ones might work best for your child's educational needs!
Limited space can make it hard to fit all of your students in the room.
When your class size is small, you don't have a lot of space to work with. The resources you do have may be shared with other classes or teaching staff, and the students themselves might even be in the same room. In addition to the limited number of student desks and chairs, you may also share some facilities such as bathrooms, hallways and kitchens. It's important to keep this in mind when planning activities that require moving around the room or taking up space??you'll want them to work well for everyone!
Students in a very small class have fewer personalities to interact with.
Students in a very small class have fewer personalities to interact with. Students in large classes have more personalities to interact with.
Students in small classes might feel isolated. Students in large classes might feel overwhelmed.
Students in small classes might feel like they are not getting enough attention from the teacher or their peers, while those same students may be frustrated by the lack of face-to-face interaction that comes with being surrounded by so many people! It's important for teachers to make sure each student feels supported and cared for as they navigate their time at school, regardless of how many other people are around them!
There's less separation between teacher and student, a problem that gets worse with more young teachers.
In a small classroom, it??s easier to get to know your teacher and have a rapport with them. But this can be both good and bad. A big benefit of small classes is that students feel comfortable speaking up if they need help or are struggling with something. Teachers also feel more pressure to be friends with their students (which I presume some teachers want) and less like an authority figure who needs to sit at the front of the room and lecture for an hour at a time. However, this closeness can also result in more privacy issues: What if you don't want your classmates knowing about something? How would you feel if every time you had an issue with your teacher they knew about it immediately?
As someone interested in learning but not necessarily interested in being friends with my teachers, I've found this aspect particularly challenging at times??and it's gotten worse as teachers become younger (and thus closer in age). As someone who doesn't enjoy sharing personal details about himself that aren't relevant for class discussion, I'm constantly wondering how much should I share about myself when talking about schoolwork with other people who will likely be strangers until next year's orientation day rolls around again!
Very small classes don't prepare students for large class__END OF CONTENT
If you've ever taken a class with more than 20 people, then you know that it can be difficult to get individual attention. As a student, you might feel overwhelmed by the sheer number of students in your class??and even more so if you're shy or socially anxious. While that's not an ideal situation, it's certainly better than being stuck in a small classroom where there's no real opportunity for anyone to speak up during discussions or lectures. That's why some students prefer large classes: they know they'll have opportunities to participate that don't exist in small classrooms.
If your child is outgoing and confident enough to ignore these issues, then perhaps this isn't such a big deal for them after all. But for many children (and their parents!), learning about how others think and feel is the best way for them to grow into themselves as individuals??and since smaller classes allow more time and space for those interactions...
We've seen that there are several benefits to small class sizes, but there's also a lot of downsides. With the increasing popularity of small classes in the UK, it's important that teachers know what they're getting into and prepare themselves accordingly. If you're interested in teaching at a school with small classes, make sure you know what types of problems may come up so that you can plan ahead!