|

Expert Iconexpert advice MORE

Class Size Too Big?

Elementary School Expert Advice from Barbara Potts

Q: My third-grader usually does well in school, but his grades are declining and he has a poor attitude. I think there's a personality conflict between him and the teacher.

I think the class size is too big -- she can't give proper attention to each child. I am not the only parent who thinks so. What should we do?

A: Talk with the school principal and express your concerns. As you say, it is probably too late for much change this year, but the students who have that teacher next year may benefit from your efforts. Let the principal know the kind of teacher you would like your son to have next year (supportive, caring, understanding, or etc.) so that he can get off to a better start and have a more successful year.

Keep in mind that there is a big jump between second and third grades, both in curriculum and in teacher expectations. Many third-grade teachers believe that the children need to know they are no longer in primary school, and that more will be expected of them both academically and behaviorally.

It sounds like your son's teacher has had a tough situation this year. Even with an assistant, 35 children is an incredible number to teach. Current research has shown that children's achievement improves tremendously when class sizes are reduced. With that many children, it's no wonder that the students have trouble listening and paying attention. Talking with the principal may also improve that situation for next year as well.

More on: Expert Advice

Barbara Potts has worked as an elementary school counselor for many years. She has a BA in psychology from Wake Forest University, and an M.Ed. in Guidance and Counseling from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.


Please note: This "Expert Advice" area of FamilyEducation.com should be used for general information purposes only. Advice given here is not intended to provide a basis for action in particular circumstances without consideration by a competent professional. Before using this Expert Advice area, please review our General and Medical Disclaimers.

stay connected

Sign up for our free email newsletters and receive the latest advice and information on all things parenting.

Enter your email address to sign up or manage your account.

Facebook icon Twitter icon Follow Us on Pinterest

editor’s picks

highlights

Healthy Smile Checklist for Kids
Have better dental check-ups with this free printable checklist that helps keep your child flossing, brushing, and smiling! Brought to you by Philips Sonicare.

Kindergarten Readiness App
It's kindergarten registration time! Use this interactive kindergarten readiness checklist, complete with fun games and activities, to practice the essential skills your child needs for this next big step. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!

8 Easter Egg Decorating Ideas
Need some fun ideas for decorating Easter eggs with the kids? Look no further for colorful and cool designs!

7 Ways to Curb Kids' Exposure to Violence
American children are exposed to violence more often than you might think. Learn how to limit your child's exposure to violence and manage the mental health and behavioral effects it can cause.