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What is your opinion on Kumon?


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#101 TheGreenSheep

Posted 31 August 2018 - 01:49 PM

 annodam, on 31 August 2018 - 01:05 PM, said:

Totally agree with brains wired Mathematically.
I'm amazed how my 9½yo gets the answers to some questions & when I ask him, he says he just sees the numbers/answers in his head.  DD & I just look at each other like, WTF?
My paternal gr/father was exactly the same though, number recall in 2secs flat despite not having any education, it's genetic, it has to be!
Pretty sure thats what is referred to as form of Synesthesia

#102 Sincerely

Posted 01 September 2018 - 09:43 PM

There's obviously a wide range of aptitudes across the general population and as some people are 'naturally talented' at sport, so others have a 'natural talent' for mental arithmetic or spatial reasoning etc. However, it's a pity that some people, particularly kids, believe that maths ability is binary (pun intended) & one either has it or doesn't have it. Such people often convince themselves that they are 'just not good at maths' & deny themselves the opportunity of understanding maths. Maths & it's applied form of physics underlies the mechanics of everything, therefore understanding maths helps in many areas of life.

#103 annodam

Posted 01 September 2018 - 09:50 PM

I wish I could understand Math.  I liked it & was OK with it up until Yr 10 Algebra, I lost the plot right there & gave up.
Perhaps if I had a decent Tutor, dad did find me one but her teaching was so different to the Teachers at school, I got so confused.
In the end, the Tutor just told dad not to waste his money anymore on me as I was a lost cause :(

#104 Expelliarmus

Posted 01 September 2018 - 10:01 PM

I used to despair about maths because I didn’t understand it and literacy was so much easier. I was bad at maths, never understood any of it, couldn’t see he patterns, had no idea how to keep all that information in my head - I couldn’t even get all my ‘times tables’ to stick! How could I remember all the other facts and formulas?

Not until I had to teach maths and have embarked upon what is now around 8 years of numeracy learning did I realise I wasn’t bad at it. I just hadn’t been taught it properly.

#105 Sincerely

Posted 01 September 2018 - 10:07 PM

 annodam, on 01 September 2018 - 09:50 PM, said:

I wish I could understand Math.  I liked it & was OK with it up until Yr 10 Algebra, I lost the plot right there & gave up.
Perhaps if I had a decent Tutor, dad did find me one but her teaching was so different to the Teachers at school, I got so confused.
In the end, the Tutor just told dad not to waste his money anymore on me as I was a lost cause :(

Before the Internet existed, it was really hard for isolated individuals to seek help when 'stuck' at maths. Nowadays, there are forums where keen numberphiles (senior HS or Uni students & maths teachers), will often provide their solutions to questions posted by anyone. Best wishes with your DD & DS.

#106 unicycle

Posted 02 September 2018 - 01:45 PM

 Sincerely, on 01 September 2018 - 10:07 PM, said:

Before the Internet existed, it was really hard for isolated individuals to seek help when 'stuck' at maths. Nowadays, there are forums where keen numberphiles (senior HS or Uni students & maths teachers), will often provide their solutions to questions posted by anyone. Best wishes with your DD & DS.

Would you mind sharing useful sites?

#107 QuirkyMum

Posted 02 September 2018 - 09:15 PM

How do Kumon books( from a bookshop) compare to sheets given at Kumon classes or as homework? Are they similar in style? Is it just if you go to Kumon classes or do it via correspondence, you get much much more practice on the same topic that you'd from a book?
Thanks!

#108 Prancer is coming

Posted 02 September 2018 - 09:54 PM

I have a kid that works time tables out manually.  I think he does a lot of adding, or with something like 6x9, will work out 6x10 which is easy and then take 6 off it.  Interestingly, a recent cognitive test shows his working memory is pretty low, despite his maths ability being high.  And as soon as you stick a timer near him (speed maths), he is going to struggle.

I did not think a quick recall mattered that much, but the school support teacher tells me that learning them by memory will help when he is doing harder problems.  He does not want to spend longer than he needs to working out basic sums, and he is probably more prone to mistakes doing it his way.

Edited by Prancer is coming, 02 September 2018 - 09:55 PM.


#109 seayork2002

Posted 02 September 2018 - 09:57 PM

 Prancer is coming, on 02 September 2018 - 09:54 PM, said:

I have a kid that works time tables out manually.  I think he does a lot of adding, or with something like 6x9, will work out 6x10 which is easy and then take 6 off it.  Interestingly, a recent cognitive test shows his working memory is pretty low, despite his maths ability being high.  And as soon as you stick a timer near him (speed maths), he is going to struggle.

I did not think a quick recall mattered that much, but the school support teacher tells me that learning them by memory will help when he is doing harder problems.  He does not want to spend longer than he needs to working out basic sums, and he is probably more prone to mistakes doing it his way.

DH does it the same way as your son, i work in a more non consistent way. Which is why i think we confuse DS!

#110 Sincerely

Posted 03 September 2018 - 09:02 PM

 unicycle, on 02 September 2018 - 01:45 PM, said:



Would you mind sharing useful sites?

I suggest Mathematics Stack Exchange (https://math.stackexchange.com/) and
Math Help Forum (http://mathhelpforum.com/). I've never posted questions or answers myself but I occasionally found archived threads useful on these sites. Disclaimer: Please note that they are online communities made up of a range of contributors so not all responses will contain correct solutions but often subsequent contributors will pick up on any errors & post correct solutions.

Edit: From what I've seen, the majority of posts in these maths forums are helpful & some contributors will engage in further explanatory dialogue, but it should be understood that posts are not necessarily expert reviewed & may contain errors (as do most expert reviewed textbooks I might add). A quick scan of multiple threads would give a good idea who are the most useful contributors.

Edited by Sincerely, 05 September 2018 - 03:27 PM.


#111 Sincerely

Posted 03 September 2018 - 09:32 PM

 Prancer is coming, on 02 September 2018 - 09:54 PM, said:

I have a kid that works time tables out manually.  I think he does a lot of adding, or with something like 6x9, will work out 6x10 which is easy and then take 6 off it.  Interestingly, a recent cognitive test shows his working memory is pretty low, despite his maths ability being high.  And as soon as you stick a timer near him (speed maths), he is going to struggle.

I did not think a quick recall mattered that much, but the school support teacher tells me that learning them by memory will help when he is doing harder problems.  He does not want to spend longer than he needs to working out basic sums, and he is probably more prone to mistakes doing it his way.

As it happens, there's a Q & A exchange with quite a nice explanation posted in the Mathematics Stack Exchange site I suggested earlier (https://math.stackex...ow-does-it-work).

#112 LorixC

Posted 16 July 2019 - 08:23 PM

Honestly as someone that's gone through the Kumon curriculum and work with kids now I would not recommend it. It was basically getting students to memorize the facts and write it down as fast as possible, honestly, was not helping with building any math foundation. We didn't think through any problems we just did the same set of problems over and over until we aced that level. I prefer other styles better like Beestar, helps with building foundation, lets students pace themselves and has a great reward system which is a big plus nowadays.

#113 Sincerely

Posted 17 July 2019 - 09:13 AM

 LorixC, on 16 July 2019 - 08:23 PM, said:

Honestly as someone that's gone through the Kumon curriculum and work with kids now I would not recommend it. It was basically getting students to memorize the facts and write it down as fast as possible, honestly, was not helping with building any math foundation. We didn't think through any problems we just did the same set of problems over and over until we aced that level. I prefer other styles better like Beestar, helps with building foundation, lets students pace themselves and has a great reward system which is a big plus nowadays.

There is absolutely no substitute for understanding underlying maths concepts. I suspect the philosophy of places like Kumon is that getting a student to achieve proficiency at performing the mechanistic steps will help them to see the underlying principles and it may happen for some, but not for others.

For the past term, DD1 has been tutoring a bright Yr 8 student. This child used to do well at maths in primary school but was slipping to below average in early high school. By explaining the underlying concepts to her student during lessons held only one hour a week (much, much cheaper than Kumon), in a single school term, DD1 has managed to help her turn around and achieve a high nineties mark in the half yearly exam.

Typo edited.

Edited by Sincerely, 17 July 2019 - 09:14 AM.


#114 MincePieMasterchef

Posted 17 July 2019 - 10:03 AM

If its any help OP my kids love IXL maths and it seems to be helping them a lot with the concepts.  We also cook heaps and get the kids to weigh, measure etc. And board games as a PP mentioned. Things like game of life or monopoly help with adding up money.

#115 LorixC

Posted 17 July 2019 - 07:41 PM

 Sincerely, on 17 July 2019 - 09:13 AM, said:

There is absolutely no substitute for understanding underlying maths concepts. I suspect the philosophy of places like Kumon is that getting a student to achieve proficiency at performing the mechanistic steps will help them to see the underlying principles and it may happen for some, but not for others.

For the past term, DD1 has been tutoring a bright Yr 8 student. This child used to do well at maths in primary school but was slipping to below average in early high school. By explaining the underlying concepts to her student during lessons held only one hour a week (much, much cheaper than Kumon), in a single school term, DD1 has managed to help her turn around and achieve a high nineties mark in the half yearly exam.

Typo edited.

I apologize if you have misread what I was speaking about. In terms of building foundation I was relying to Beestar's structure/curriculum which helps build upon the different skill sets. Again, this also depends on having those foundation in Pre-K with learning numbers and being able to understand the concept.  all I'm trying to say is that there are more efficient ways then going through the Kumon process. It has its positive side without doubt but not all kids learn the same way.




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