Independent Study - a Possibility through Kumon7:40 AM
Our family doesn't say no to opportunities for learning so when Kumon recently offered a two-week trial, I registered my two children for the program . Within the four sessions each given to my two kids, I confirmed what I have always known all along. Children benefit from a learning system that is simple, consistent, and challenging.
The Kumon Method of Learning is a system of learning that emphasizes daily study and repetition that is provided in an easy starting point and the right level as determined by an assessment test. New students usually start at a level that is below their actual school grade level to ensure that the basics are solid before they even attempt any further. The program was originally developed in Japan by a father who wanted to help his son who was having difficulty in Math.
There are only two programs offered - Math and Reading. It is not a tutorial program but rather a study program that is intended to complement regular school work. Every session lasts for about 30 minutes at the frequency of two sessions per week.
Parents are given tips to help their children succeed in the program. It is highly recommended to provide children with a permanent study area in the home that is well-lighted, quiet, and free from distractions. Parents are only expected to supervise as children answer their worksheets. Daily study of short periods is intended to be part of a child's routine to effectively inculcate the importance of consistency in studying.
These study tips are likewise applicable to a child's daily school work. Once children have established a regular study time, chances are, they will be the ones to remind their parents. One good thing I've observed with my children during this very short trial period is that they've easily picked up the idea that they can initiate studying by themselves because of the established routine.
The Expected Benefits
Kumon seeks to provide long-term benefits to children mainly by establishing good study habits and life skills. Beyond parents' expectations for improved mathematical analysis ability, reading and comprehension ability, as well as logical thinking ability,children are expected to bring the discipline they have acquired up to adulthood. Children are also expected to gain confidence to face new lessons in school with no apprehension , knowing fully well that they have been prepared well enough by advanced learning.
Independence in study is likewise an expected benefit from the program.
If there is something that I would like my children to get from this experience, it is the understanding for the need to be independent in their studies. I have been a hands-on mother from day 1 particularly with regards to their personal welfare and studies. However, I would have to admit that the lessons they are having now is something that I either have to learn or relearn myself.
Even before I can teach my children anything with regards to their assignments, I find myself studying all over again to come up with the right answers. Every year, their lessons become more difficult and I would have to concede that there are lessons that I may not be able to teach them. It is with this realization that I hope my children will find a way to help themselves specifically in areas that are limiting to me.