Every time I read a post about class sizes I giggle a little bit.
I completely understand why other teachers shouldn’t have 30 or more students in a class. I really do.
But then I do the math. Every class I teach has over 30 students.
Now, I know that teaching band isn’t like teaching english or math - I don’t have a standardized test (though we do have standards from the state and nation). I’ve had many teachers tell me directly that I can handle bigger class sizes because band doesn’t do any real work. I’m not a real subject or class. I’m an elective.
But here’s the truth: I’m still responsible for specific feedback for each student about their progress in my class - I still have to give each of my students a grade.
Each week students get a grade on their practice card and any work that we have done in class (like learning theory or doing reflections). I also give them multiple assessments each nine weeks on music theory or the music they have been learning. I also make sure that at least once in every nine weeks my students do some type of writing assignment so that they can learn how to talk about music.
So really, I do a lot of grading. And I have a lot of students. So when I see teachers complain about how many students they have in a class and all the grading that comes with it, I can’t help but giggle.
I should start offering to swap places with them. I would love to have a class of less than 30.
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- songswithoutwords said: you have a band room, or chorus risers that can handle your numbers. the bigger the better for our ensembles. But I’m teaching general music in a small classroom with desks crammed in for 35 students. That’s my complaint; not the grading or management
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