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Does anyone have any views they'd like to discuss about Kumon?
Thinking about starting it for a Y4 who is struggling with maths. Can't afford a tutor at the moment but could afford Kumon. It seems to be well-spoken of in our area but I know it's a bit of a love/hate thing (I think?) so would be interested to know any thoughts.
Thanks in advance.
You get what you pay for to a certain extent. It basically seems to be a structured way of practising so it won't be particularly personalised but if the DC just needs a bit of practise to develop fluency it could be effective. If they actually have issues with a subject (e.g. shaky foundations in certain areas) it's less useful. This is just my experience though.
Thanks NomNom - guess I'm not quite sure where the problem is! Maybe we'll give it a go and see, probably can't hurt in the absence of a 1-1 tutor.
I like Kumon. Perhaps it varies area to area but I get a detailed debrief after each session as to what is going well and what we need to work on.
It's very repetitive, focused on quick mental maths, but that's been helpful for my DC. I think people often say you could easily reproduce the same worksheets at home from online resources, but I don't really have spare time at the moment to think all that through so Kumon suits us.
I am a teacher and Kumon kids usually end up being very good at the rote stuff and being able to do pages and pages of column addition/subtraction etc but absolutely zero application skills, and therefore it doesnt really improve their maths overall.
If you got them to do Kumon to improve their fluency and mental skills, you would have to keep a really close eye on application skills (eg. Word problems, trick questions, reasoning that sort thing)
Thanks v much for your views porridge and moon - yes I kind of get the view that it's very number based rather than maths problems. Guess I don't really know where to start with the gaps he's got so maybe I'll give it a go to get his mental basic maths up a bit and then see where we are in 6 months or something...
Kumon is a Japanese program and the Japanese school system is based on the American one, so it doesn't necessarily have much in common with the UK system. We've done Kumon (both the English and Maths programs), on and off with both our DC. What it's good for is repetitively practising key skills - so if your DC is struggling to hold a pen or is making lots of careless mistakes then Kumon gives them endless drills to do and it does work to bring up their standard. However, the weakness of the progam, IMO, is the same as it's strength. It's repetitive, so it's boring! And once your DC gets towards doing 11+ the Kumon drills just aren't enough on their own, because as they're not based on the UK education system the DC gets bogged down in endless fractions or whatever it is that they're doing, rather than the broad selection of number and word problems that they'll encounter in British entrance exams.
@octopusrus have a look at maths whizz (www.whizz.com). It's an online programme with the level in each subsection tailored to where your child is working, there's a free trial so you could give it a go then decide whether to continue or not. My DD really enjoys it because it feels like a game.
Thank you Fresas will have a look.