Thursday, December 30, 2010

Fun in numbers

Teenager Koong Zhe Xian admits he was a restless child who got bored of repetitive tasks. Today, he is all praise for a Japanese method of studying, which he credited for his passing the O-Level Mathematics at the age of 16.
The SMK Chan Wa, Seremban student – who is now proficient in pre-university level Maths syllabus such as algebra, calculus and statistics – was trained for 34 months under the Kumon Method.
“My marks in school (for Mathematics) have always been okay, scoring above 90%. But the method encouraged me to be more disciplined in my work,” said a visibly excited Zhe Xian when met in Kuala Lumpur recently.
The Science stream student added that he had learned to be independent in his thoughts.
Zhe Xian, who scored straight As in his PMR last year, aspires to be either a physics researcher or a teacher.
His mother Wu Swee Leng commented that many students failed to score in Mathematics due to lack of practice.
“To enjoy doing Mathematics, students need to get the basic skill correct. Then, they will enjoy the fun in the numbers. Otherwise, the subject will become stressful because they feel they can never get it right,” said Wu, who together with her husband, are both lecturers in tertiary level Mathematics.
The Kumon Method was developed by Japanese Mathematics teacher Toru Kumon in 1954.
There are about 200 Kumon centres spread out nationwide, providing training in Mathematics and English.

TheStar, Sunday December 19, 2010


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