With school back in session, kids around the country are back in the classroom learning math. Inevitably, some of those kids are going to struggle or need enrichment beyond their current grade level, and some parents of those kids will turn to a commercial tutoring center such as Kumon for help.
Unfortunately, Kumon isn’t the best option for all families. And unless parents find something that works for their kids, the struggles and frustration with math will continue. Here are some reasons why you should explore alternatives to Kumon this school year:
Kumon can be expensive—often, well more than $100 per month. When you are paying that much to take your child to a commercial tutoring center, your expectations may be unusually high, both for the program itself and for your child’s results. You never want to find yourself saying to your child, “We’re paying all this money and you’re not improving!” when, in fact, he or she is doing everything the tutor is asking. Alternatives, including innovative tablet-based tutoring services, are not as expensive and can produce similar, if not better, results than Kumon.
With Kumon, you go to the tutoring, as opposed to the tutoring coming to you. The lives of you and your children are busy enough after school without you having to readjust your schedule and fight through traffic to attend a tutoring session. Tablet-based alternatives to Kumon can deliver tutoring services that fit your schedule—your iPad doesn’t even need an Internet connection for your child to do digital worksheets.
This can drive you crazy: You pay for a tutor, your child is sent home with worksheets, and then… you have to grade them. Besides burdening your schedule when you instead are seeking more convenience, grading worksheets for older grade-schoolers can be a challenge if you haven’t seen certain math concepts in a couple decades. Many parents already take the time to help children with their homework; you shouldn’t have to pay extra for that privilege by being tasked with grading worksheets.
Another challenge with Kumon is getting your child to buy into the process. If tutoring feels too much like school, he may resist. Sitting at a table or desk, filling out worksheets, and waiting for an instructor to point out what was incorrect may feel too much like school, thus resulting in your child feeling bored or uninspired. Alternatives such as tablet-based tutoring services decidedly make the learning feel fresh and innovative—even “cool.” For a child struggling with math, “cool” can be the best way toward wanting to improve.
Have you considered tutoring options for the upcoming school year?