News and Events
7 March 2018
Bringing learning back to basics: The Kumon approach
Kumon focuses purely on raising children’s reading and calculation ability, as they are fundamental to success in all subjects at school. By doing this, Kumon brings learning back to its basics. It gives students a solid foundation in maths and English and lays the groundwork for students to succeed in school and in later life.
Kumon achieves this through the pencil-and-paper Kumon Method of Learning. This method teaches students English and maths by giving them expertly crafted worksheets to complete. Students are taught this method under the guidance of their Instructor.
Toru Kumon once explained that, “students with strong calculation skills will be good at high school mathematics … algebraic calculations such as equations, factorisation, trigonometric functions, differential calculus, and integral calculus, cannot be performed without a complete understanding of the basic calculations of addition, subtraction, multiplication, division and fractions.”
And Mr Kumon also saw solid reading skills, “as the basis of all academic ability.”
“If children have strong reading comprehension, they will become eager to learn, they will consult dictionaries and encyclopaedias when they encounter problems they do not understand, and they will acquire self-learning skills. This means that a child can read, understand and perform well.”
Through continual practice and repetition of these worksheets, students achieve mastery of maths and English. Teaching is individualised to each and every student, and students advance at their own pace.
Claire, a Year 7 student, says that it was her progress in Kumon English and Maths that helped her achieve a comfortable transition from primary to high school, as she had already mastered the basics through Kumon.
Claire completed Kumon Maths in Year 7, and is well on her way to mastering calculus. Through Kumon, she has also seen great improvement in her English skills.
“In maths, we learned factorisation at the end of Year 7, but I already knew how to do it because of Kumon. I wasn’t confused at all ... for me, the learning process flowed, kind of like a river, and the prior learning helped me avoid being stressed”, Claire explains.
“For English, at first, my vocabulary and my reading comprehension were both very weak. As I completed each level, I improved a lot and I became much more confident in my English skills”.
This focus on the essentials and the pencil-and-paper method is what attracted Dharshi, a mother from Auckland, New Zealand, to enrol her twins Ashvin and Arvinth, 10-years-old, into Kumon. This tech-savvy duo can code robots for competitions like the FIRST LEGO League, are aspiring mathematicians, and are more than five years’ ahead of their school grade level in mathematics.
However, when they learn mathematics through Kumon, they do their calculations with pencil-and-paper.
“Considering today’s technology, I think it’s really good for my boys to sit and write”, Dharshi says. “To sit in a place and think, to turn off the devices; to learn, to self-correct and learn things by themselves.”
Arvinth and Ashvin say their technology-free Kumon learning also helps them with their robots, as they have the highly developed calculation ability needed for coding.
To learn more about the Kumon Maths and English Programmes, click here.
Read the experiences of those students Kumon has helped nurture.
Search for a Kumon Centre near you