Zeyneb completes the Kumon Maths Programme in just two years!
12-year-old Zeyneb from the Kumon Milton Keynes, Giffard Park Study Centre has completed the Kumon Maths Programme in just over two years! It’s a remarkable achievement for someone who initially lacked confidence in her own ability, and was prescribed a study programme that saw her working on topics that were well below her school level. Demonstrating determination, consistency, and trust in the Kumon method, Zeyneb has defied her own expectations and is now working at a level equivalent to GCSE standard work.
Zeyneb’s aim when she joined Kumon at ten years old was to improve her maths skills and her general academic confidence. From the initial assessment, it was discovered that Zeyneb was not completing her school maths work very efficiently; she got lost in the calculation processes and was therefore losing concentration.
Her Instructor, Anjana, concluded that it would be a good idea for Zeyneb to revisit basic additions, subtractions and her number bonds, in order for her to master the early foundations of mathematics and to ultimately allow her to progress onwards with speed - and that’s exactly what happened! After spending some time practising the key functions, she was empowered to move swiftly through the Kumon levels to more advanced work.
One of the many skills that Kumon students learn is to hold information in their head and develop an overall mental agility that allows them to work with a focus and flow. This efficiency means that they are less likely to forget things in the calculation process and make mistakes along the way.
Zeyneb was able to start the Kumon Maths Programme at her own, individually-set starting point. She had ability in some areas, but through a diagnosis of areas that needed more specific practice, she was able to progress at a comfortable pace, completely outside of the work she was doing at school. Then, by studying consistently every day, Zeyneb practised her skills and learned to take ownership of her learning, both in maths and across all her schoolwork.
She said, “Over time, I unknowingly developed many study skills that have helped me to progress across all my subjects. I was able to manage my time better with a daily study routine, which helped solidify my knowledge and problem-solving skills. Learning to study independently has taught me to persevere and to thrive on new challenges. Kumon also taught me to have confidence whenever I encounter new problems or tough questions.
I started to notice that as I progressed through school, my subject work seemed easier and I became more confident in my abilities. As a result, I’ve started to discuss the latest concepts that I have learned from Kumon with my maths teachers at school. Overall, I’ve started to achieve higher grades and I’ve been placed in the top set.”
At Kumon, Instructors instil each child’s confidence by encouraging their students to assert a ‘have a go’ attitude and to endeavour to work out answers by themselves using the examples and their learning from previous questions. The learning gained from doing it for oneself is powerful and increases the child’s self-belief.
Zeyneb has also developed a great relationship with her Instructor, Anjana.
She says, “I have studied under Anjana throughout my Kumon journey, who has always been there to instruct and guide me when needed and motivated me to carry on. Not only does she love her role, but she passes on her passion for maths and English to all her students. I have very much enjoyed studying at the centre.”
What would Zeyneb’s advice to her fellow students be?
“If you’re doing higher levels in Kumon, my advice would be to be resilient and keep going. Never give up! Just stick to it, even if you feel like you are having a tough time. The motivation is a key structure that will take you to success.”
Zeyneb feels that the wider study skills she’s developed will be invaluable for her future, telling us, “Kumon helped me to develop my time management, self-learning, problem-solving, the ability to concentrate for longer periods of time, and a love of learning.
I feel very proud of myself to have achieved completion of the programme and such an honourable reward; it will be so useful and effective in my education. My future goal is to achieve a grade 9 in my maths GCSE. In the long term, I aspire to study medicine at Cambridge University and become a neurosurgeon. Kumon has helped me to realise my own potential and the steps I need to take in order to achieve my goals.”
Kumon Instructor, Anjana is proud of Zeyneb’s achievements, telling us, “When Zeyneb joined Kumon I placed her on an early Kumon level with the intention of building her basic foundations. Within a year she progressed well and was working on fractions, and by Year 6 had reached one of the highest levels of the programme. Zeyneb has always had a good understanding of mathematical concepts, and now she has also become an independent self-learner. This skill enabled her to work through the higher levels of the programme and take ownership of her work.
In March 2020, when the COVID-19 pandemic emerged, I was concerned for all my young learners who were doing higher-level work. But they all had paved their way with their excellent foundations and ability to self-learn. Zeyneb’s completion of the maths programme during the pandemic is excellent proof that “Learning never stops”. Challenges make us stronger and increase our ability to persevere and to be successful. Well done, Zeyneb!”
Equipped with a love of maths, strong academic skills and self-confidence, Zeyneb looks forward to preparing for her GCSEs in two years’ time.
Congratulations on your stunning achievement, Zeyneb!