10
Oct
08

The Kumon method

My son has been attending the local Kumon centre for some months now.  It costs us $200Aus per month, money worth its value.  With our children we’ve always considered additional teaching materials over and above schooling and Kumon provides that opening. 

The Kumon method is proven.  Key facets are repetition and consistency.  Each day he receives a booklet, maths and english.  He is challenged to finish each within ten minutes and with near 100% accuracy.  At five years old, and with many months of daily practice, he is at a level where he can complete each booklet by himself.  Each page is at a level that he is comfortable with – kumon aims to provide material at an individual level free from the competitive edge of peers.  The challenge is gradual, a new word or number sequence here and there.  Most of the time he is repeating answers he has already learned and by doing so builds confidence. 

The best part for me is that it is structured.  Goals are set daily.  If I consider a learning method where I demand results and if I over-impose this method without positive engagement then the ultimate result is failure, because ultimately he disengages.  Because Kumon is repetitious and within the scope of my childs capabilities it automatically attracts his will to achieve.  The Kumon method allows my son to take ownership not only in the results, but also progress.

17 December 2008 – my son Nathanael scored 11 minutse on a maths level, down from 20 minutes and 25 minutes previous.  I was so proud.  Previously he was discouraged and often gave up.  He would look at a question and shrug and look up losing concentration.  I could often keep him for a few questions but then he would simply give up.  Not this time.  Each question was filled out quickly.  He ran through it at a pace that is recognised as achieving that level.  Being persistence and allowing him to realise how to finish it fast (and the importance of time) was essential.

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