Monday, February 9, 2009

Class Size

Last week, the students at YPSH started a new semester. This new semester is special to my students, the majority of which are in 9th grade, because they have now survived their first semester of high school. I noticed an improvement in their behavior at the start of this semester and I only expect it to continue. Behavior seems to be a topic of discussion lately, as our next TF meeting plans to discuss how students’ behavior affects on the learning environment. I suspect the relationship between learning environment and class size to be universal across all of high school education. Last semester, we had a class of 34+ students in a freshman biology class. Even with the teacher and myself there were always too many questions or, even worse, too many distractions. This semester the same class has shrunk to a ~ 25 students. This semester, the class environment is considerably more conducive to learning. I feel that this TF experience has cemented my belief that the education system will be creating bigger hurdles for itself, unless more teachers are hired and class sizes are limited.