Math: Level H (equivalent to junior secondary school level, 3 years ahead of school grade) Chinese: Completed in December, 2016 (equivalent to senior secondary school level) English (EFL): Level I (equivalent to junior secondary school level, 4 years ahead of school grade)
Finding Happiness in Self-Learning - Student Zhou
Children who study Kumon usually have a strong belief of persistence. A Primary 5 student, Zhou is not an exception. She studies Kumon Math, Kumon Chinese and Kumon English (EFL) altogether. During more than three years’ learning in Kumon, how much effort has she put into her learning, and how much has she gained? She is going to share with us one by one in the interview.
Become a Self-Learner and Enjoy Happiness in Learning
Although Zhou is a Primary 5 student, she is quite fit in with the Kumon Method which aims at self-learning and self-exploration. She said, “The Kumon Method means self-learning. I look at the examples on the worksheets and gradually solve the problems, and the process lets me experience the joy of learning.”
We hope that children can learn happily and confidently; it is part of Kumon’s missions. According to Zhou, about her gain in learning, she explained, “Let’s take math as an example; the focus is the calculation, I learn a variety of problem-solving approaches. Kumon helps me to build a solid foundation, which improves my calculation skill and increases my speed and accuracy. Learning Kumon English allows me to build a better vocabulary and sentence structures. Learning new knowledge on my own makes me happy.”
When she was asked about how to deal with difficult questions, Zhou answered, “Kumon allows us to self-learn; therefore, I will think about it first, then if I cannot find out the answer, I will ask my instructors. She will guide me to find the solution; I think this way of learning is pretty good.”
Good Time-Management | Learn Without Stress
Besides school and Kumon study, Zhou also learns calligraphy and drawing. Zhou seems to learn without stress, “Calligraphy and drawing are two lessons each week. I also need to practice at home. If I do not practice calligraphy and drawing, when I learn new things, I won’t do well. They are like Kumon, it has to learn persistently.” It is a must for Zhou to have a good time-management skill to handle a variety of learning. “Daddy and Mommy will set the timetable with me, and I will try my best to accomplish.”
Zhou seems like having a “learning engine”, which keeps her patient and passionate in learning. Her instructor told us that Zhou has been learning Kumon for three years. Besides the days she wasn’t feeling well, she finished her Kumon worksheet even when she was on vacation. Zhou shared that her persistence comes from her parents and instructor’s encouragement. After interviewing Zhou’s mother, we believe that her study habit and belief are inevitable.
Holding a Firm Belief
Zhou’s mother went on a business trip in Singapore and Malaysia, where she first watched a video about Kumon and started getting to know about Kumon. “I think Kumon’s learning material is very flexible. Instructors can adjust the learning content based on my daughter’s learning situation. However, no matter what ‘skill’ we learn, we have to be persistent. If children have the persistent attitude in learning, they can perform well no matter what they do in the future. It’s not only a learning principle but also a life truth and belief.
In history, there are lots of talents who are gifted when they were young; however, once they were lazy in practice then they were no longer having those gifts. Actually, this is the same concept. A while ago, a little child would like to learn Kumon with us, but later told us that he felt it difficult, and did not want to study Kumon anymore. Actually, it is what parents should have predicted. Difficulties come in every kind of learning. If parents are not persistent, how can children have the reason to persist? I am a ‘stubborn’ person, I always told my daughter that she could not give up easily.
Sometimes I may speak too much, and I will tell her from another perspective. I’d say to her that many children want to learn Kumon too, but they probably do not have the same opportunity as you do. Learn to cherish your learning opportunity. Gradually, she started cherishing the learning opportunity and held tight in persistent learning.”
The way of communication of Zhou’s mother is very impressive, when she continued to share, we found that about her child’s education, what she does are not only about communication and encouragement, but there are even more.
Pay Attention to Daughter’s Growth
“What she learns in Kumon every day, about what kind of topics, I also know it. I work in the education field as well. When she does not know how to do, I will give her some hints. I only give necessary hints and mainly leave the instruction to her center instructors to guide her. As I know what content she is learning, I sometimes ask and inspire her to think about the new content while using public transport. Nowadays people emphasize maximizing the spare time. Zhou’s mom can make good use of her spare time to teach her child. It is very impressive!
“Instructor will place my child’s mistake pages on the top to remind her to pay attention and make corrections. When she takes them home, I will help her to stack together, one every ten pages. I will also help and look at her corrections and help her to organise when I am free. No matter how Zhou studies at home, I will share with her instructor timely. If the learning foundation is not firm enough, it is all right for children to practice more.”
In order to have a mighty change in learning, every student pays endless effort behind the scenes. As Zhou’s mother accompanies her, we believe that she will continue to self-explore more knowledge and gain more happiness in her Kumon learning journey.