No two students exactly are the same. And it makes sense that different students learn better in different situations. At The Tenney School, we understand that “one size fits all” does not apply to education. For instance, many young people attend public school, where hundreds of students are crammed into one building. But a big classroom may not be the best environment for every student. Here are four types of students who will learn far better at a smaller school.
1. The Overwhelmed Student
Some students thrive by being part of a crowd. Some, on the other hand, prefer learning in a smaller group of people. They feel overwhelmed, or even claustrophobic when surrounded by hundreds of peers. In the classroom, they are constantly distracted by the movements of their classmates as they try to complete their work. They find it difficult to focus on their instructor as they hear the sounds of papers rustling, desks squeaking, and keyboards clattering all around them. Learning can be extremely difficult in this setting. A smaller school provides a much more conducive learning space for the overwhelmed student. At a smaller school, students do not have to run from classroom to classroom. The rooms are closer together, the hallways are less crowded, and the classrooms are quieter and fresher. At a smaller school, a student can find the focus they need to process information.
2. The Gifted Student
Not everybody learns alike. Gifted and talented students are those who exhibit academic and/or creative skills far above those of their peers. These students will ace exams and projects without a struggle. These students often feel held back in big classrooms. Since they tend to take in information and complete things faster than their peers, they feel stuck as they have to keep pace with the school program. Unchallenged, they become bored and apathetic. Many smaller schools, however, have specific programs for the gifted student. They create a course that will challenge the student, giving them an academically exciting journey. These programs will not only keep the student learning, but it will also help the student learn how to best use their unique capabilities.
3. The Slow-Learning Student
True learning is never about speed, nor is it about keeping up with peers. It is about the fact the student is gaining new knowledge and experiencing new discoveries. This positive framework, however, is difficult to cultivate in a large school. Teachers have to keep on track, forcing the entire class to move forward at the same rate, whether or not they have truly grasped the material. Students who are perfectly capable of learning, given the proper amount of time, are left in the dust due to the relentless pace. At a smaller school, however, there is more room for personal attention. Teachers can take extra time to explain a difficult concept more fully to individual students. They have more opportunity to allow the students to take the time they need to truly learn the information given to them. Small schools make learning a joy instead of a struggle for students who like to take their time.
4. The Adventurous Student
Many students enjoy alternate ways of learning alongside the usual reading and writing assignments. They learn best by hands-on experiments, artistic assignments, and non-traditional projects. This kind of student is bound for greatness if they learn how to use their abilities and their sense of adventure. At a large school, the adventurous student will hardly be able to use his or her gifts. The unbroken list of normal and mundane assignments will soon have them bored and may even make them lose their taste for learning. A small school, however, opens up more possibilities. Teachers at smaller schools have more time to spend with each individual student, allowing them to understand the student’s unique skills and ways of learning. Small schools also allow more diversity in the assignments given. A small school is a place where the adventurous student can thrive.
To learn more about The Tenney School, contact us. Our educational method is designed to perfectly accommodate each student and his or her skills.