This year at HRV, many teachers have classes that surpass the student limit of 30 students per class. Math classes especially have had larger classes over the past few years. Teachers in the math department are faced with classes of about 30 students or more.
Advanced Algebra/Trig. Teacher Kara Tonn’s largest class has 41 students. “I am happy to have that many students taking an advanced math class,” Tonn states. “However, the ideal size for such a course is around 30. The biggest problem is that it takes so much longer to get to know the students and their needs,” she admits. When the school holds a math class such as this, a larger amount of students will be ready to only go on to the next level. This class is one step further from Algebra 2, and will definitely hold a larger body of students.
Algebra B/Pre-Calculus teacher Shayla Moline holds a considerable amount of students in her classes, but also finds it challenging to give help to each individual student. “It is crowded in my room so it is physically harder to get around for them and me, harder to maintain a ‘calm’ atmosphere, harder to do activities, etc. But, it can also be fun,” Moline quips. With smaller classrooms and a large amount of students, handling the class and helping around may take more time. Moline currently has 36 students in one of her Pre-Calculus classes. It’s great higher level courses are being offered, but will also be challenging for teachers throughout the year and for the students.
Math courses are required for at least three years with passing grades to receive full credit, and some students are still working to make sure that they have enough math credits to graduate. Having big classes may be a challenge, but the students will be able to receive the credits they need.