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    Class size
    By Kathy

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    This is my 23rd year teaching and my class size has varied from 10 to 32! I would agree with the post that said it depended a lot on the class. I'll have to say that year I taught my 10 first graders (my all time low) was a much tougher year than the year I taught 22!

    I had 30 students (grade 3) most years when I taught in California and it was usually quite manageable. For some reason, when it hit over 30, it seemed a lot tougher. It's amazing that one or two children could make that much difference, but they did.

    I do agree that a smaller class size generally does lead to better teaching. I have a small class again this year and it is MUCH faster to check and make sure everyone has the concept, to grade papers, and get homework folders ready. I'm definitely able to do more things with a smaller group.

    I do find that when you have a small group, if someone has a rough day it's harder on group dynamics. The social situation can be tough when you don't have many. (I'm lucky this year since my class gets along really well, but I've had small groups other years when I wished I had a few more.)

    Even though some things take less time when you have a small class, many things (class preparation, decorating the room, etc.)take the same amount of time if you have 10 or 32. What I've found is that if you have a big class everyone feels sorry for you and wants to help out. When you have a small class, the general feeling is that you have it "easy" and should be available for any extra jobs that need doing!!

    My ideal class (in the primary grades) would be around 18 students.

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