The Importance of Small Ratio Classes

The Importance of Small Ratio Classes

The English language is considered by many to be one of the most difficult languages to fully understand. There are several reasons for this, but there is definitely no denying that conversation can often seem like the most difficult aspect of the language to truly master. While it might be natural to use typical lecture teaching methods to teach subjects such as grammar and vocabulary to a large class, conversation is an activity that is most useful when exchanged between a small group of people, or even one-on-one. At Optimus Language School in Orange County, we use our small class ratio to ensure that conversation is efficiently integrated into every class we teach.

Average classrooms can be comprised of ten, fifteen, or even twenty students. In some cases, class size can grow even larger than thirty students, and the personal aspect of teaching is completely lost. For some subjects, such as grammar and spelling, teaching on a whiteboard to a large group of students works just fine. However, it is nearly impossible to help each individual student to improve their conversation skills in such a large classroom setting. Conversation is made up of two basic parts: speaking and listening. It has been our experience at the Optimus Language School in Orange County that conversation is the most sought-after skill by ESL students. In many cases, our students already have some background in studying the English language academically. What they are truly interested in is the way Americans use English on a day-to-day basis.

The intricacies of conversation can only be mastered through practice, but this practice must be delivered to each student on an individual basis. It is unrealistic to believe that the most useful conversation practice can be delivered effectively in a large classroom setting. This is one of the key reasons that we choose to keep our student to teacher ratios as low as we do here. While our largest class size comes in at eight, we encourage all prospective students to opt for the four student classroom experience instead. Minimizing the number of learners in each classroom maximizes the chances those learners have to speak with our teachers and gain useful daily conversation skills. Pronunciation, sentence structure, idioms, and even common slang terms and misuse of the language are covered in detail, helping our students not only to gain knowledge of the English language, but also to learn how average people in the United States use English in their day-to-day lives. What’s more, all of the teachers at Optimus Language School are native English speakers, allowing all of our students to benefit from English speakers that have been using the language to communicate with others for their entire life.

Conversation is one of the most difficult aspects of the English language to truly master. Pronunciation, sentence structure, idioms, slang, and many other aspects combine in a way that can very easily be misinterpreted by non-native speakers. Our job here at Optimus is to help decipher the more difficult points of the English language, and the only way to effectively do that is through keeping our class size as small as possible. These efforts to assist international students from around the world is what sets us apart from many other language schools. If English conversation is leaving you with little to say, Optimus Language School is the solution!


Published on July 18, 2016

A leading English language school accredited by the CEA (Commission on English Language Accreditation) and approved by SEVP (Student and Exchange Visitor Program) located in Los Angeles, California. Learn English in LA with our ESL classes, TOEFL preparation, and English speaking classes. Are you serious about improving your English? Join a class today!