Today was my day for another tooth cleaning. Months ago I had told Trudy, my dental hygienist, my goals in teaching mathematics . When I spoke of my excitement about soon beginning this our web site – MathLaboratory.com – she told me a fascinating story.
Trudy said that she was once limited by not having the right math background and vowed that would never happen to her daughters. She was determined that her two daughters learn math in the Kumon Program from Grades 4 to Grade 8. She had decided that they would not be limited in what they could do in school – like she had been.
She said they hated it all those years. That it was hard for her as their Mom to be persistent in making sure they did their daily work. Trudy was herself persistent. She insisted that baby sitters have them complete their assignments.
This lasted for four years. Trudy spoke of how many books she was able to read in her car while waiting for them at the local Kumon Center. Twice a week their homework would be reviewed with the Kumon Instructors, they would take a timed test and then based on it be given new homework assignments.
Sadly she had to give way to their refusal to go any further. And happily it was enough.
Both daughters are now in their late twenties. Trudy says she is so proud of them since Kumon did help them in high school and college. She said all the kids taking Kumon would recognize each other in the school classes since they stood out from their peers.
Trudy was happy to report both daughters now say that her insistence on taking Kumon was the very best she did for them!
The KUMON story itself is a fascinating one – it is far and away the most successful After-School Education Program in the world. It continues to expand world-wide – and well-deservedly so. We have learned what makes Kumon so successful.
I relate this story because Trudy wished us well – she thought kids needed some after-school help, encouragement and daily work discipline. And that is what we are about.
Thanks Trudy for the encouragement – only recently have I learned to appreciate such synchronicities!