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Quality and Meaningful Learning Opportunities that Count

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Education has always been a priority for Mr. Doroteo Carmelo “Dot” and Mrs. Ma. Johanna “Jhoi” Lujan. They believe in providing their daughter, Breizel Serenity “Brei”, with quality and meaningful learning activities that will further develop their daughter’s skills and lead her to better opportunities. This is why enrolling Brei in the Kumon Program was the best choice for them. “My sister introduced Kumon to my wife and me since her son was enrolled in a Kumon Center in Makati City. She gave us good feedback about the benefits of Kumon, which is why we decided to give it a try as well,” shared Daddy Dot.

With the Center located just a few blocks away from their residence, attending Kumon classes became an easy and essential part of Brei’s weekly routine. Kumon became a significant influence in Brei’s academic and character development – specifically developing her to become an independent and hardworking student with an affinity for music and books.

Kumon Beginnings and Challenges

Brei was about three years old when she did her Kumon Reading Program worksheets. She found it enjoyable since the worksheets were easy, and she already knew how to read at that time. For her, it was like playing and reviewing her lessons in kindergarten.

She experiences a lot of difficulties in both the Kumon Math and Reading Program worksheets, especially when she is answering problems in the higher levels. There are times that she can’t understand what is said or asked, so she asks for help from her dad.

”Sometimes, my dad may not know or understand, as well. He would tell me just to read and study it all over again to get the idea of what I am reading so that I would be able to review what is being asked.” This practice has helped Brei complete the Kumon Reading Program worksheets and go through the challenging Kumon Math Program worksheets.

Changes and Achievements

Brei was enrolled at the young age of three. At that time, Mr. and Mrs. Lujan didn’t know her interests and tendencies in studying since she was only a toddler. Through Kumon, they were able to develop in Brei a good study attitude and proper study habits. She also began to read a lot since she enrolled first in the Kumon Reading Program.

“We decided to go for the Kumon Reading Program first because we wanted Brei to be able to understand questions better, gain a better comprehension of things, and become an analytical reader. She also came to be independent and developed techniques on how to solve and answer questions.”

The Kumon Program continues to help Brei become an excellent student and a willing learner. The summer before grade one, Mr. and Mrs. Lujan decided to enroll her in the Kumon Math Program as well, and this decision has led to Brei gaining more achievements. In school, she was the top one of her kindergarten class and is a consistent honor student now in grade school.

“There is no pressure on her in her math and English subjects – she gets high grades and is either the top one or top two student in her class. Also, she was recently the top 3 in the Math Trainers’ Guild (MTG) exam, despite it being her first time to join.”

For her extra-curricular activity, Mr. and Mrs. Lujan encouraged Brei to learn a musical instrument because they want her to have a talent to grow and learn from today until her later years. They chose the piano because this instrument allows Brei to develop her sense of hearing (since the piano has a perfect pitch) and increase her brain’s capacity to keep and recall information (since her mind continues to be active as she practices and memorizes notes). Aside from that, Brei also develops confidence and critical thinking.

Support and Advice

Mr. Lujan is the one who personally attends to and reviews Brei on her studies, while Mrs. Lujan is the one who reminds them of what needs to be done and reviewed. This is how they show Brei that they support her 100%. Sometimes, she gets pressured because of the challenging topics and because the Kumon Program is not only a pastime for her. She knows of the importance of the Kumon Program because Mr. and Mrs. Lujan always remind her that she can benefit a lot from it.

“We then encourage her by always showing our support for her in Kumon, and we emphasize that we will always support her in the same way – be it in school or her extra-curricular activities.”

For Mr. and Mrs. Lujan, being patient and being understanding are also two very important things to remember when supporting Brei in her Kumon study.

“Sometimes, Kumon can get frustrating and confusing on our part. Sometimes, it can feel like a burden. But we always try to remember that the cost and the time that we spend will all be worth it because it is all for the future of our child. We believe that Kumon is a guarantee for our child’s good and bright future.”

Even though it differs for each child, since one child can progress fast and another child can take some time, Mr. and Mrs. Lujan always support Brei until she reaches the goal. They make it a point to always be proud of her achievements and be surprised with what she will be able to do.

“Just always support them all the way – be it financially, morally, emotionally, and with all your love – selflessly.”

Mr. and Mrs. Lujan believe that Brei will be future-proof since she has already undergone the challenging stages in the Kumon Math and Reading Programs. Through Kumon, she has learned how to comprehend, analyze, and answer statements and questions better. Brei has also learned to be patient and to persevere with whatever task is before her. She knows how to deal with certain situations since she will need to recall what she has learned and apply it to whatever situation. They believe that all these things are essential for Brei to succeed and be what she wants to be in the future.

 

Fostering Discipline and Perseverance – The Kumon Way

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It was pure interest and a curious mind that stirred the eagerness of three-year-old James Ronald Ferrer to attend regular school like the other kids. He had the tendency to ask questions about what school was like to his mom, thus pushing Mr. Ronaldo and Mrs. Teresa Ferrer to enroll James in the Kumon Program to entertain his curiosity towards learning.

His Kumon Instructor even identified James as the type of student who would punctually come to the Center just to finish his worksheets, even after a long day of exams in school. Since then, he continues to express signs of determination and motivation to stay in the program until completion.

Character Development

Mr. and Mrs. Ferrer saw many positive changes in James’ habits and character. They found the Kumon Method as a good foundation in building a disciplined way of learning as it made a great impact on his time management skills.

“He knows when to do his homework even when there is no school. He is independent and responsible enough, which is why he still has time to play and enjoy with his friends.”

They also noticed that James developed self-confidence, especially in socializing with others. In fact, he makes time for his extra-curricular activities where he can meet new friends and be in different schools and places.

Academic Excellence

Besides being more disciplined, focused, and organized, James developed his own techniques to learn faster through his inquisitiveness. This ability to learn and understand has led him to his consistent participation in international competitions such as the International Competitions and Assessment for Schools (ICAS), International Mathematics Assessments for Schools (IMAS), Australian Math Competitions (AMC), Math Trainers Guild (MTG), Association of Math and Science League International (AMSLI), and Singapore and Asian Schools Math Olympiad (SASMO).

“Since I am an advanced student in the Kumon Math Program, my classmates noticed my skills, and they would often ask me to help them understand our lessons in school.”

Preparation for the Future

When he was young, Mr. and Mrs. Ferrer still assisted and checked James’ worksheets. They would even sit with him and do the worksheets together since he liked being challenged. As he advanced to the higher levels, they tried to motivate him by promising rewards such as taking him to GameZoo and Toy Kingdom during the weekend. But as James got older, they slowly removed these kinds of rewards so he can see the results of his own actions and take responsibility for it.

“We also give him the privilege to prove himself. James is now independent enough to do his projects, and we know that this skill will help him as he enters high school and college, and as he pursues his dream of becoming a pilot.”

What advice can Mr. and Mrs. Ferrer share to their fellow Kumon parents?

“DO NOT QUIT, DO NOT GIVE UP. Just continue what you have started. As parents and decision-makers, we should always motivate, equip, empower, and encourage our children, especially when facing difficulties in their Kumon study. As the Bible says in Galatians 6:9, “Let us not become weary in doing good. For at the proper time, we will reap harvest if we do not give up.”

 

 

 

5 Tips on How to Study Smarter

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Have you ever felt like 24 hours a day is not enough for you as a student? With all the homework to finish, projects to work on, and tests to study for, there might be so much on your plate. Not to mention the other activities and commitments you have to attend to. Wouldn’t it be nice if you have all the time in the world to do all of your activities at your own pace?

However, our time is fixed. We can live a balanced life by knowing how to manage ourselves and maximize the time we have in a day. The first step is to change your study habits by studying smarter!

Here are a few tips on how you can study the smart way:

1. Know the best study environment for you.

Find the best place to study at home where you can focus on your studies. Avoid studying in bed or reading while lying down as you may have the tendency to fall asleep. Reduce background noise or play soft music to keep your mind relaxed while studying. Finding the best time to study also affects your study environment as this tells you that you are prepared to enter your “study mode.”

2. Take control of your schedule.

Controlling your study schedule will help you accomplish your goals for the day. For instance, you can track which assignments should go first or which lessons should be prioritized. It is important that you plan your schedule and determine the number of hours you need to finish a task. Of course, you’ll have to try your best and stick to the schedule you have planned out for yourself to accomplish more in a day!

3. Use your free time to your advantage.

There are times when you will be receiving lighter schoolwork than usual. You must be extra careful with your ‘easy’ days or weeks and use them to your advantage by getting ahead with lessons, projects, and papers. You can also use your lean days to spread out the work for your big project, especially when the due date is not yet nearing.

4. Organize your notes and maximize available resources.

Anyone can take down notes, but organizing them in a way that you can better understand it is another. Try making diagrams or listing key points to help you remember certain topics. You can also try summarizing your notes to increase your learning efficiency. Maximize your resources at home, such as your internet connection and electronic devices, to research for extra information related to your lessons.

5. Take breaks after each study session.

Ultimately, you cannot entirely do any of the mentioned tips above without getting enough rest and sleep. Sleep is essential to us, which is why it is also a must for every student to take short breaks after each study session. This habit of taking breaks will allow you to refresh your mind and keep you motivated to focus on your next study session.

 

Kumon Philippines adapts to children’s safety and education needs amidst pandemic

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“We must adapt, and Kumon is adapting to meet your needs – parents, students, and franchisees,” said Mr. PJ De Guzman, Assistant General Manager for Business Development of Kumon Philippines, during the 9th Philippine Franchise Association e-Kapihan.

Source: Philippine Franchise Association

According to Mr. De Guzman, even with the changes brought about by the pandemic, parents continue to give importance to two things: their children’s safety and their children’s education. An education provider that can deliver good results without a classroom set-up and address the need for safety will be in high demand. Yes, Kumon can fulfill both needs.

Source: Philippine Franchise Association

Mr. De Guzman shared that in terms of safety, the Kumon Centers nationwide have moved from a “twice-a-week in the Center face-to-face set-up” to online instruction and consultation through the My Kumon app and Homework Exchange program. As for the education aspect, the Kumon Method of Learning has always focused on self-learning and independent daily study – with the Kumon worksheets designed for self-learning and with the Kumon students being trained to study independently daily.

Source: Philippine Franchise Association

 It was emphasized by Mr. De Guzman that Kumon is a brand that continues to adapt and develop other ways for children to study in the new normal. “We believe that if we have created a trustworthy brand, then, even in these difficult times, parents will continue to turn to us to help develop their children. And if we can foster a genuine relationship with these parents and show them how their children are growing, they will stay with us for the long term through thick and thin.”

Source: Philippine Franchise Association

The webinar was held last July 23, 2020, via ZOOM. This webinar was the final episode in the first season of the e-Kapihan series by the Philippine Franchise Association. The session focused on “Redesigning the Shopping and Service Experience” with speakers and panelists from Ayala Malls, David’s Salon, Kumon Philippines, and YSA Skin and Body Experts.

Source: Philippine Franchise Association

 With more than 300 Centers nationwide and with the goal of providing the method to more children, Kumon Philippines aims to open more Centers. For more information about the franchise opportunity, send an email to franchise@kumon.ph or contact 0917-629-9760.

 

For more details, visit our website at www.ph.kumonglobal.com.

Explore, Be and Do More!

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IO Rubix
Io Calica

Math genius. Young mathematician. Gifted child.

These are just some of the monikers that are often associated to Io Aristotle Nikolai Calica. His parents, Mr. Ianne Calica and Mrs. Melissa Prudencio Calica, share that he was already a force to be reckoned with when he was just five years old.

“Io was part of the top 10 and even became a chess champion in school. He beat the grade five and six students for a chess competition in school. He then started to become serious about math and chess – waking up as early as 6 am to play chess or read books about chess notation. This prompted us to visit a psychologist, thus we found out that he is gifted.”

IO Competition
Io wins another Math competition

Io’s fascination with numbers can be traced back to when he was as young as two years old. Being a math teacher at the University of the Philippines, Mr. Calica introduced Io to math and eventually became his first math teacher. But as time passed, the practice of downloading worksheets online became difficult for Mr. Calica. With this, the idea of enrolling Io in Kumon came up. This is something Io himself affirms when asked why he enrolled in Kumon. “I enrolled so I could learn more complex things in math. If I didn’t enroll earlier, I would have a lack of math.”

 

Aside from knowing people enrolled in the program, Mr. Calica acknowledges that Kumon is something structured – a method with a curriculum and worksheets that are all well thought of and prepared, and a method that allows a child to progress with his ability in mind and with him exploring and enjoying the process.

 

According to Mr. and Mrs. Calica, Kumon has helped further Io’s advancement in math and other subjects. He started attending upper-level classes while doing grade six math even when he was just in grade one.

We enrolled him in a music class at the University of Philippines – Diliman and let him sit-in for calculus and algebra-trigonometry classes. It has been successful as the teacher loves him and he has even gained friends. Since he is also the school representative for school competitions like MTAP, MTG, Math Quiz and Sudoku, Kumon has really helped Io develop mental calculation skills.

Mr. and Mrs. Calica have noticed three notable changes in Io ever since he started Kumon.

First, Io learned patience. He used to hate waiting for a long time; but through Kumon, he learned to exert effort and time to understand a problem before answering or to understand a topic before progressing to the next level.

He has also experienced repeating worksheets and failing, which has made him realize that not all things can be achieved immediately in one try. He has to work hard to reach his achievements.

Second, Io developed discipline and perseverance after learning the value of trying again and again.

As parents, we believe that learning involves repetition and failure. Io needs to do things again and again to better understand. And if he fails, he will be able to learn a lot about himself from failure.

Third and last, Io has become very goal-oriented.

He sees his progress and achievement when he goes to the Center. But he also makes it a point to write down his progress and his next goal in his notebook.

Calica
The Calica Family

 

As parents of a Kumon student, Mr. and Mrs. Calica constantly take note of four things when guiding Io. First, do not force the child to do something.

If he needs rest, let him rest. Make a way for the child to want to do it – not for the sake. Find a way to make the experience more fun and creative for the child.

Second, Kumon cannot develop the child alone – parental involvement is also necessary.

It is always a 50-50 effort between the Center and the parents. Always check on how the child is doing in the program. Make time for the child and be present to guide the child especially in the initial stages of his Kumon study.

Third, learn to listen to the child.

Do not simply impose what you want the child to do, or what you want to happen. Know what the child can do and cannot do by simply listening.

Fourth and last, always persevere.

If parents think of something as a burden, then it becomes a burden. The time will come when the child can do things on his own and achieve so much – parents must simply be there to support and guide the child toward academic and character development.

Motivation to Love Reading

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With the age of technology and the rise of the use of gadgets, there are already a lot of activities that would put reading slightly further from one’s priority list. Kids these days would spend more time playing online games and interacting on social media than reading books. As parents, you know how valuable reading is, specifically developing a love for reading. Your child gains comprehension and reading ability and enhances his communication skills. He also gets a new outlet to relieve stress since reading helps reduce stress and promotes relaxation and learning.

So how can you motivate your child develop a love for reading? Here are three tips to help you and your child start the journey:

  1. Read and discuss.

Set an example, and read in order to encourage your child to do the same. You can try to set a certain time of the day or week just to spend time and read with him. Talk about the book you are reading and what you’ve learned from it, then see how he reacts. Seeing you enjoy what you are doing and actually doing what you are pushing him to do encourages him to give it a try. Once he starts to read regularly, you can start reading the same book and holding discussions about it. This allows your child the chance to share his views and to learn from you. It also leads him to make reading a daily and fun habit.

  1. Choose and recommend.

Not having reading as a daily habit makes it hard for your child to know which books to read. You can start by letting him choose which ones he finds most interesting. Getting a book that he really wants to read will help boost his curiosity and reading ability since he is reading something he wants to read. After a few months, you can try searching for the most recommended book lists and encourage him to try reading these books. By this time, he will have already developed an interest in other genres and in well-written books.

  1. Explore genres.

It is said that children who read different genres of books develop their thinking skills, and improve their vocabulary. Aside from these, they broaden their worldview, while boosting their self-esteem. Your child gains more inspiration when they read stories with new and unpredictable plots. The more you expose your child with various books, the more they appreciate the value and worth of reading, which could also be the first step to him creating his own library.

Maximizing Kumon at Home

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Consistently studying your worksheets at home guarantees continuous progress and a smooth Kumon study. Since the environment at home is different from the Center, there are many activities that can distract you from studying. You can increase your productivity at home with a dash of discipline, the right attitude, and a good study routine.

Doing your worksheets in the Center allowed you to stay focused because the environment encouraged you to study well. Here are some steps you can follow to duplicate your Kumon Center’s environment at home:

1. Create an environment conducive for learning at home.

 

 

Find a space where you can do your Kumon worksheets without any distractions. No TV, gadgets, or toys. Think of this space as your “tiny Kumon Center” where it’s quiet, enabling you to focus on studying. Don’t forget to have sufficient lighting for you to study with ease.

 

2. Establish a Kumon time at home.

 

 

Decide on a best time when you can do your Kumon homework in a day, and follow this schedule. This can occur in the morning, in the afternoon, or at night. It can also help if you have a clock at home you can always refer to so that you won’t miss your Kumon time.

 

3. Set your own routine at home.

 

 

Once you’ve decided on the best environment and time for your Kumon study, the next thing you should consider is having your own study routine at home. You can customize the routine you follow in the Kumon Center! For example, instead of getting your vinyl folder and giving it to your teacher, you can ask your mom/dad to set up the laptop while you prepare your notebook, pencil and eraser before sitting down with a prepared self and determined mindset.

 

4. Ask for help.

 

 

If you find yourself facing a difficult question/problem in your worksheets, don’t be afraid to ask for help from your Instructor. Just like in the Center where you can directly consult your Instructor, you can do so at home through a video call. Always remember that your Instructor is there to provide guidance and to help you develop the needed independence to study on your own.

 

5. Celebrate your success!

 

 

Nothing beats a pat on the back after working hard. Reward yourself by doing your favorite home activities, and by taking a break. This will surely help you recharge and make you feel accomplished after consistently studying Kumon at home.

 

Four Secrets to Raising Smart Kids

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By: Mrs. Melissa Villanueva, Mother of Zelina, Pauline, Mary of Kumon Mabini (Tagum) Center

1. Know your kids’ needs and create a plan to work on it.

Mrs. Villanueva has always dreamt of having children who are good in math because it was one of her frustrations as a child. Since she and her husband wanted their kids to face math with confidence, they wanted them to explore and love the subject at a very young age. “So, six years ago, we started to research on parenting advice related to our dream and we came across Kumon. We also asked relatives and friends who had experienced the program.”

They were also able to come across Teacher Jane Doce, who happens to be their friend and the Instructor of Kumon Mabini (Tagum) Center. “We saw this opportunity as God’s will because everything came into places at the right time.”

Mrs. Villanueva’s children were pioneer students in the Center. “My children are very enthusiastic to learn and discover new things. From orientation up to their first day in Kumon, I found them very happy and they said it was everyday fun.”

2. Listen to your kids, especially during tough times.

“It was a tough journey for my children.”

As Mrs. Villanueva’s kids grew older, their concentration and time management skills changed as there were more demands in school activities plus daily commitment with Kumon.

“I have always been thankful to the Lord for His guidance to my children. Even though it was a very challenging journey for them, they learned the importance of the right balance between study and fun and the ability to focus. They learned to work productively and consistently, to follow the system diligently, and to embrace the challenges completely – all important factors in achieving success academically, emotionally and mentally.”

3. Be their best and no. 1 cheerleader.

“Never give up. Aim high. Dream more.” These are the phrases Mrs. Villanueva always hear from her children. These are the same magic words she would like to share to all parents out there as well.

“Work as a team. Work with your children and always make them feel that you are with them in their journey. Provide a praise and reward system to keep them motivated during challenging moments and when they start to think of quitting. Never stop reminding them of their commitment to succeed.”

“A dream doesn’t become reality through magic, it takes sweat, determination and hard work.” This is the quote Mrs. Villanueva uses to empower her children to do more, learn more and aim more – to become an achiever.

4. Acknowledge help; we have extended arms.

Mrs. Villanueva owes her thanks to Kumon for creating a big impact to their family – from the test of patience to the love of teaching and learning.

“Despite our busy schedules, my husband and I made time to assist and guide our children during homework time. We developed a stronger family relationship as well as everyone else in the family got involved. This is just one of the ways on how we support them in their dreams and we are happy that we can also feel the success they aim for each day!”

 

Top 4 Places Where We See and Use Math

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“Do I really need to learn math?”

The answer is, yes! Math is present everywhere – in nature, in technology, in money, and many more. It is more than just solving problems or critical thinking, but it’s also there to prepare us in facing challenging problems in the future.

Here are some aspects in which you can see the outright use and presence of math:

1. In Daily Activities

Let’s say you want to bake cupcakes and consult a recipe book for that matter. The first thing you’ll notice is that every ingredient must be measured accordingly to what is written on the recipe book in order to bake the cupcakes correctly. Whether you need 1 cup of flour, 1 cup of sugar, and a dash of salt, you can see math working its way in letting you create the best recipe!

 

 

2. In Games and Puzzles

There are many board games and mind puzzles that require mathematics and logic. For instance, solving a Sudoku puzzle will require you to place numbers from 1 to 9 in a 3 x 3 box without repeating any number per row or column. Here, not only are you using your number knowledge, but you are also exercising your brain.

 

 

3. In Clocks and Calendars

Can you imagine life without clocks and calendars? Math played a huge role in the development of the modern way we tell the time and weather. Ages ago, people only relied on sundials and astronomy to predict the time and seasons. Now, we have an instant way to tell time, thanks to math!

 

 

4. In Nature

There is a famous sequence called the ‘Fibonacci Sequence’ where each number is derived from adding the previous two numbers. It is also said that its properties can be applied and found in natural patterns – in sunflowers, shells, cherry trees, and more. Isn’t it amazing to see how a structure is derived from a mathematical sequence?

 

 

Sometimes, we may not be aware that we’re already using math in our everyday lives. But math’s presence is everywhere, which is why we should continue to learn and appreciate it!

 

 

4 Ways to Set Up Your Reading Corner at Home

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Have your checked your books lately? If you have a mini-library at home, now is the best time to arrange your books and continue reading them!

Whether it’s in a rack or a shelf – here are the best ways to arrange your mini-library for your ultimate reading project:

1. Alphabetically

This is the most reliable method you can count on, especially when you want to locate your favorite titles quickly. Most libraries use this method, and some would alphabetize books by each author’s last name. Just a little tip: ‘A’ and ‘The’ counts when you alphabetize titles!

 

2. By Genre

If you’re a full-fledged bookworm with a wide range of books, you can categorize your books by genre (classics, non-fiction, fantasy, etc.) Don’t worry if you come across books that may cross two or more genres (historical-fiction, mystery-fantasy, etc.), because as long as you think it’s easily located from the genre that makes sense to you, then you’re good to go!

 

 

3. Chronologically

Libraries that have a collection of rare books are arranged by publication date for easy access. You can adopt this system and add a little spice to it by era (if you’re into historical, cultural, or technological periods). This system may be time-consuming, but it’s definitely interesting for others who plan on trying it.

 

 

4. By Color

If your aim is to have an aesthetically pleasing mini-library, then arranging books by color is you best option. You can play with the cover of your books by arranging them in such a way they come out as a rainbow effect. This way, you’ll find it more pleasing when you want to locate a certain title.

 

 

Ultimately, the decision lies to you when it comes to arranging your reading corner. Don’t be afraid to try these tips! What matters is that you have your own efficient mini-library which contributes to your reading project.