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New edition of ‘Potential’ magazine out now!

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The future is uncertain. But with the right tools, students can continue to make strong progress in their learning. We have dedicated this issue of Potential to explain how Kumon can support students to keep making progress in their learning, despite uncertain times.

We hope you enjoy our digital copy of Potential. 

Five ways that Kumon nurtures confident learners

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Research suggests that self-confidence in primary school children is an important factor in determining academic achievement, irrespective of a student’s cognitive ability, age and gender.

We place importance at Kumon on developing good study habits while maintaining your child’s motivation to learn. We avoid overexerting students and emphasise efficient and consistent study. This supports your child to develop confidence as they learn.

In the below article, we explain five ways how Kumon supports children to grow into confident learners.

1. The starting point

Your child begins Kumon with worksheets that make it relatively easy for them to attain a near perfect score, in a short amount of time. The purpose of this is to help your child to feel confident they can do the worksheets on their own. Once your child starts growing in confidence, they will become enthusiastic to continue learning and study more worksheets.

Through learning each day, your child’s concentration expands and a daily study begins to form.

2. A clear path for progress

The Kumon programme is structured in a series of levels that become incrementally more challenging as your child progresses. This structure allows your child to have a clear idea of how far their learning has advanced. It also makes it easy to set learning goals and to determine a plan to achieve them. The Kumon Method prioritises the development of skills in reading, writing and calculation. These form the foundation for most learning at school. Kumon’s structure also provides an efficient learning method through which your children can enjoy learning.

3. Careful monitoring of workload

As your child gains confidence in their learning, they will begin to show enthusiasm towards study. If we suddenly start to give your children a lot of work in order to accommodate their enthusiasm, this could quickly demotivate them. At Kumon we understand it is important to monitor your child’s workload, to ensure they are able to learn without overexertion. Your Kumon Instructor will assess and adjust your children’s study plan on a regular basis.

 

4. Practice and daily study

Your child can repeat worksheets when needed, to decrease the number of errors, reduce their completion time, review an earlier topic, or consolidate something new before they move on. The right amount of practise and a daily study habit lay the foundation for smooth progress.

 

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5. Learning at the ‘just-right’ level

All children have varying levels of academic ability. If children study the same content simply because they are of the same age, some lose confidence because the material is too difficult while others become bored because it is too easy.

Study projections, progress updates and observations from a child’s Kumon Instructor ensure that the ‘just-right’ level of study is maintained for each individual student. Kumon ensures that children always study worksheets at their ‘just-right’ level – the spot between study material that is too easy and too difficult.

By maintaining each child’s study at their ‘just-right’ level, children feel confidence as they overcome challenges in their learning.

These are just five ways that Kumon’s learning method supports your child to develop confidence as they learn. In this way, our programmes set children up for a positive and confident journey in their future learning.

Self-learning: an invaluable ability for children

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If your children enjoy learning on their own, it means that they have confidence in their skills and are able to take on new challenges. In Kumon, we identify this as self-learning.

Self-learning is seen as the ability to take in information, process it, retain and understand it without the presence of a teacher.

Kumon develops self-learning through allowing students to study ahead of school grade level when ready. As students advance ahead of school grade level in the Kumon worksheets, they learn for themselves what they are yet to be taught at school. They study the example, draw on previous learning and give it a try. They try, and try again, until they finally get it. Sometimes with a hint from the Instructor.

Self-learning has many benefits for students. In the below article, are five benefits of self-learning that may be of interest for readers:

 

  1. Children develop better memory retention

Kumon believes that children who learn concepts on their own can better remember and retain knowledge. Based on our decades of experience in supporting children’s learning, when children are encouraged to retrace their steps by correcting mistakes or to evaluate how problems were solved, it is highly likely they will retain, in their long-term memory, the specific steps towards solving a problem.

 

  1. Children take responsibility for their own learning

When children learn something on their own, they gain a sense of ownership for their work. They come to understand the link between the effort that they put in, and what they are able to achieve. Through this process, they develop a sense of responsibility towards their learning.

 

  1. Children begin to develop a strong work ethic

As children develop a sense of ownership for their learning, they take responsibility for important tasks such as double-checking their work and correcting errors. They also come to appreciate the importance of developing a daily study habit. They come to know their limitations, and when it is necessary to ask for help. As children consolidate these skills, a solid work ethic evolves.

 

  1. Children grow more confident as they self-learn

As children grow more confident by overcoming challenges, they will feel ready to tackle further challenges. Children who self-learn are less inclined to give up at the first hurdle. They try and try again until they get the answer right.

 

  1. Children start to go beyond their comfort zone.

As self-learning ability develops, children will develop a mindset that no problem is too difficult to attempt. They will not be afraid to learn new things. Furthermore, they may exhibit an interest in taking on new experiences and challenges – things they are yet to encounter. With this mindset, their opportunities will widen.

These are only five benefits of self-learning for children. There are many further benefits. Equipped with the skill of self-learning, children can pursue their own potential at school … and in life.

Sandhya feels ready for a rapidly changing future

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Sandhya Das Thuraisingham, a future student at the University of Oxford and former Kumon student, says studying Kumon Maths from a young age played an essential role in helping her to be ready for an unpredictable future.

Sandhya has been accepted into Oxford to study an undergraduate degree in philosophy, politics and economics. She hopes to travel to the United Kingdom to purse her studies in September this year, should conditions allow for the relaxation of international travel restrictions.

Despite global uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, Sandhya remains cautiously optimistic. Sandhya asserts she is well prepared and that her former Kumon Maths studies played a key role in building her readiness for her future.

“I began Kumon while I was in kindergarten and continued to study the programme until around 2016, when I was in Year 9,” Sandhya says.

“The little bit of study required each day by Kumon helped me to develop discipline, independence, confidence and resilience. I was also encouraged in Kumon to continually set goals and to push my limits.”

Sandhya says Kumon instilled a mindset where she always strives for her best. This mindset gave her the confidence to apply for admission into her chosen degree at Oxford, she says.

Kumon also helped her to develop the needed life skills to attain her goals.

“Kumon showed me the value of persistence and repetition from a young age”, Sandhya says. “I think the Kumon worksheets are actually structured to encourage this development.”

“The worksheets allow you to gradually build up enough knowledge before you move onto the set of problems”, she continues. “The examples in the worksheets also give you enough information to self-learn; they give you the tools to work out the problems on your own.”


Self-learning also doesn’t mean being left unsupported when progressing through Kumon.

Sandhya says that while her Kumon Instructor always encouraged her to try to complete the problems in the worksheet by herself first, says she was always offered help if and when support was needed.

“Kumon students are used to being able to tackle, new and unfamiliar problems”, Sandhya says. “They are also used to seeking help when needed after having a go first.”

Kumon is a home-based, pencil and paper programme students can study every day on their own. For more information on Kumon’s home-based programmes, please contact your nearest Kumon centre. 

Operations will vary from centre-to-centre during this period.

Sandhya received her admission to Oxford with support from Crimson Education, a holistic US and UK university application support service co-founded seven years ago by former Kumon student and Harvard graduate, Jamie Beaton. Crimson Education offers programs for students aged 11-18 years old. To learn about their extension classes and support, visit crimsoneducation.org

Nick continues to learn through any situation

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In December 2019, Nick, a Year 4 student, departed on a family holiday to China. Nick’s family trip was originally for two months. But as the COVID-19 crisis escalated, Nick and his family found themselves unable to return home.

These obstacles haven’t stopped Nick from keeping up with his study of Kumon Maths and English. Nick is keeping up with his daily study while in China. He continues to make progress.

“Kumon has helped me a lot, such as doing fractions in maths and learning English words and sentences”, Nick says.

“For me, it is important to keep learning and to maintain my study habit.”

Originally, Nick and his family arranged with his Kumon Instructor to bring two months of worksheets with them to China. After completing all these worksheets, Nick asked his auntie in Melbourne to get additional worksheets from Nick’s Kumon Instructor, and send them to him.

Nick then hand copies the photo of the worksheet onto a blank piece of paper and gets on with his study.

“Nick is independent, strong and self-disciplined”, says Nick’s dad. “He is strict with himself, keen to progress and doesn’t like to fall behind.”

“This is all due to the good study habit built up in his previous study.”

Nick’s dad also says that a supportive learning environment at home is conducive for his son’s progress.

“Nick has a quiet study environment at home; we are always there for him”, explains Nick’s dad. “We communicate with his Kumon Instructor proactively and prepare all resources for Nick. Whenever Nick encounters difficulties we are there to help.”

At the time of writing, Nick is three years ahead of his school grade level in Kumon Maths and two years ahead in Kumon English. He is a long-term Kumon student, having been enrolled for two years already. At the early stages of his Kumon study, he received greater hands-on support from his Kumon Instructor to build his independent and self-learning ability.

But as Nick progressed through the worksheets, he became more independent and consistent in his study, though he still participates in regular video sessions with his Kumon Instructor.

“My assistants and I always make ourselves available via Zoom and WhatsApp to support Nick and his family”, says Gloria, his Kumon Instructor.

“This has supported Nick to keep learning and to continue to make progress.”

Kumon is a home-based, pencil and paper programme students can study, at home, every day on their own. For more information on Kumon’s home-based programmes, please contact your nearest Kumon centre. Operations will vary from centre-to-centre during this period.

Certainty that learning will continue at home

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With most children in Victoria now learning at home, Melbourne dad Kym is confident that his boys’ learning will continue to go smoothly with the support of Kumon Maths and English.

Kym – whose sons Levi, aged 8, and Jett, aged 6, study Kumon Maths and English – says continuing to study Kumon at home provides him with reassurance that both of his boys will continue to learn.

“The structure and support provided by Kumon’s home-based programme to drive our children’s education is invaluable”, Kym says.

“There’s a lot of unknowns going on at the moment, but there’s certainty and consistency with Kumon.”

Kumon is a partnership between student, parent and Instructor, which continues during extended periods at home. The Instructor creates an individualised study plan for each student, and sends home the worksheets they are ready to learn next on their own.

Students study their worksheets, daily. Parents encourage their children to complete their worksheets to the best of their ability. Parents then mark and grade the completed worksheets.

Kumon Maths develops calculation ability. Kumon English builds reading comprehension. Both are pencil-and-paper based programmes where students take out their worksheets, pick up a pencil, read, think, write, and use an eraser to correct their errors.

Usually, students would receive support from their Kumon Instructor, in-person, at the Kumon centre. Now, students and families receive regular communication via phone, email, SMS or video messaging.

“Our Kumon Instructor has been really consistent with her communication”, Kym says. “For example, we receive regular text message updates about the boys’ learning. That’s really helpful.”

For more information on Kumon’s home-based programmes, please contact your nearest Kumon centre. Operations will vary from centre-to-centre during this period.

Kumon summer giveaway

Kumon Summer Giveaway winners

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Congratulations to the winners of our Summer Giveaway! Doing a little each day can instil daily study habits that will be vital to success at school and beyond. We appreciate all of our students who chose to continue their study over the summer holidays.

Before we reveal names of the winners, we would like to mention that each voucher is valid for several years, the winners can hold onto their prizes and use them at a later date.

And now, we are delighted to announce our Kumon Summer Giveaway winners are as follows:

  • Alan Y, Kumon Johnsonville Education Centre. Winner of the major prize of a $5,000 Flight Centre travel voucher.
  • Omar T, Kumon Dannemora Education Centre. Winner of the minor prize of a $100 Hoyts Luxe Gift Card.

Thank you again to all families who continued their learning over summer, and congratulations to all our winners.

Kumon Maths and English, a home-based programme

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Kumon is a home-based, pencil and paper programme students can study, at home, every day on their own. Our worksheets are ideal for extended periods at home.

The mathematics worksheets develop calculation ability. The English worksheets develop reading comprehension.

Learning continues at home

Kumon is a partnership between student, parent and Instructor. This partnership continues during extended periods at home.

The Instructor creates an individualised study plan for each student, and sends home the worksheets they are ready to learn next on their own. Instructors are also available for regular communication by phone, email, SMS or video messaging.

Students study their worksheets, daily. Parents encourage their children to complete their worksheets to the best of their ability. Parents then mark and grade the completed worksheets. While students do corrections, parents record the results on the study record sheet. (Ask your Instructor for a copy of The Value of Home Marking: A Guide for Parents and a record sheet.)

This daily process will ensure student progress.

Self-learning

As students advance in the Kumon worksheets, they become more confident to study the content on their own. Kumon worksheets are structured to allow progression in small steps. This enables students to advance smoothly from easy to difficult problems.

When they encounter something new, they study the example in the worksheet, draw on previous learning and give it a try. They try, and fail, until they finally get it. This is how Kumon develops self-learning.

Students come to expect the challenge of something new, and gain satisfaction in working it out for themselves. They develop a mindset that no problem is too difficult to attempt. Equipped with the skill of self-learning, students progress independently, at home, through their Kumon programme.

New Zealand Kumon centre operations throughout COVID-19

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Kumon centres in New Zealand are open for in-centre study. Physical distancing, hygiene practices and a record of attendance for all students for the purpose of contact tracing will be maintained by all centres.

Please contact your local Kumon centre to make arrangements. Operations at each centre will vary.

Kumon centres will always comply with the advice of the New Zealand Government: https://covid19.govt.nz/

For families who would like to enrol, we encourage you to contact a Kumon centre near to you. To locate your nearest Kumon centre visit: www.kumonsearch.co.nz.

We thank you for your understanding.

*THIS INFORMATION IS CURRENT AS OF 15/06/2021

kumon english reading law

Kumon: sparking a lifelong love of reading

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Being a strong reader is essential for Kelsey Davis’s law career. Kelsey, who studies a Master of Laws at Columbia University in New York City, reads, per week, an estimated 400 pages in prescribed texts.

“Obviously, in my job as a lawyer, reading is incredibly important, but it goes beyond that”, Kelsey says. “Communication is a fundamental skill in life and the written word is a key way that human beings communicate.”

“I think having great comprehension and communication skills is absolutely essential to success in life.”

Kelsey says studying and completing the Kumon English programme developed her passion for reading, her strong comprehension ability and her writing skills. Kelsey studied Kumon English in Canberra and completed the programme in 2006.

Kumon English develops a high level of reading comprehension ability in students. To inspire students to read widely, Kumon English contains more extracts from published texts than any other reading programme in the world.

Kumon also develops many transferable soft skills in students, like confidence, perseverance and self-learning. This is achieved because Kumon is individualised learning that allows students who are capable to study far beyond school grade level.

“In Kumon, you set your own goals and achieve them”, Kelsey says “You can study Year 10 work even if you’re only in year 8.”

“You can push beyond what you thought you could do before.”

Kelsey is in her second semester of her degree. During her first semester she studied human rights, civil procedure, financial statement analysis and corporate governance. Currently, she is taking a workshop on negotiation, a workshop on trial practice, an internship at the United Nations and a course in global financial regulation.

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