Shoaling is when fish hang out together, but they don't necessarily swim together in a pattern. Cory cats are shoaling fish. They graze together, but don't swim together in line.
Schooling is when they swim together in a pattern and actually even turn together like some birds do when flying south for the winter.
It is important to have groups of their own kind whether they are schooling or shoaling fish. They sometimes get very lonely or stressed when they are the only species of their kind in the tank. Usually a minimum if 3 is recommended for them to be happy.
i have my 2 neons in a 1.5 gallon tank and the guy at the pet store said that they are already pushing the limit... i got $40.00 for Christmas... should i use in to get a bigger tank? i want your personally advice. thnx!!!!!!!!!!!! Miley :-\
Small tanks are much harder to maintain than larger tanks, because you don't have as much water to work with, so the smaller tanks with any types of problem go downhill quickly. You can probably get a 10 gallon (just the tank) for $8.99 at WalMart. A good Sponge filter will cost you under $10.00 and they work great. Of course you will need a 50 watt heater and then your decorations. I think you would be much happier with a larger tank, but that's just my opinion. Even a 10 gallon is considered small. A betta would love being in a 10 gallon tank with some cory cats and maybe some more neons!