What to do with small class sizes?

I’m sure this is going to bizzare, but I have a problem with small class sizes.

Not small like 20 students. I mean small like 8 students.

I teach at a VERY small school. There are about 115 students in 6 grades (7-12). Core classes are at a good size (generally 20-30) but options classes are quite small. A CTS class has about 6 students, my band class has 7 students and an extra History class has 2 students.

Now perhaps it’s great to have 2 students in a class, but for my band class it is a huge disadvantage. I can barely play any legitimate high school band music. I feel like my students are at a huge loss because they won’t have the experience of playing in a large ensemble. Also if even one of them is sick or away we lose a major part of anything we are rehearsing.

Now on the other side of this discussion is that many, MANY other schools in my board are suffering from the opposite issue. They have upwards of of 40-50 students in their core classes and up to 70 in their elective classes. Couldn’t they just lend me some students?

What’s a teacher to do?

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One thought on “What to do with small class sizes?

  1. Actually, I have a REALLY good experience with small classes. If you don’t know about it already – look up FlexBand charts. They feature 4-5 parts divided into multiple possible pitch centre classes for a variety of ensemble patterns, and they’re usually pretty good. Not a word of a lie, the best sound I have ever been able to coax out of a Grade 9 Band was a 9-person ensemble, 3 of whom were percussionists. We played Pirates of the Caribbean, and it was the most glorious thing. Don’t get disturbed by it – think of it as a chance to do Mozart string quartets for the first time in a band teacher’s life!

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