Overcome Educational Learning Gaps Through Individualized Lesson Planning
It should come as no surprise that student learning gaps created during the COVID-19 pandemic persist.
Month after month, news headlines report continued declines in testing scores for a sobering look at the pandemic’s effect on education. Toward the end of 2022, The (U.S.) Nation’s Report Card was released, showing deep regression in both math and reading scores.
If not addressed, those learning gaps will continue to grow.
“The math and reading declines shown in National Assessment of Educational Progress’ report reflects what Kumon Instructors in the U.S. and Canada have seen since the pandemic,” says John Collins, Kumon North America’s vice president of centre network development. “While the return to normal classroom instruction has helped close those skill gaps, it isn’t enough, and Kumon further helps address the concern. Our Instructors continue to help students achieve the gains they need to continue their education.”
Learning gaps in education are nothing new. The gaps are simply a discrepancy between what the student should have learned by a certain benchmark in their education versus what they actually learned. Programs like Kumon’s after-school Math and Reading Program are designed to help a child accelerate their learning. The Kumon Method, which has been in practice for more than 60 years, focuses on building math and reading skills though daily practice.
“The pandemic created so many learning gaps in students’ learning process because, as we know, online is not in-person, especially for our early learners who are just learning to read or count, because they are not yet independent and the parents are not always able to be there and sit with them,” says Pinali Patel, Instructor at the Kumon Centre of Tampa-Carrollwood in Florida. “That created a huge gap. Kumon is the one program that is there to fill those gaps, because Kumon works differently.”
Closing the learning gap relies upon the consistent daily study of the skills the child has missed. The consistency and practice of the work each day, through scored worksheets based on mastery of skills, is a more effective way of addressing the learning gaps compared to tutor instruction that leaves additional gaps in the time worked on assignments and remediation.
So, where do you start?
The first step is through an orientation to determine if the process is right for your child. That’s followed by an individual assessment that will determine your child’s starting point.
“When they are tested, we find out where the gaps are and we start at that level to fill in those gaps and create a strong foundation,” Patel says.
The Kumon Program is an individualized approach that addresses the identified needs of each student. This helps identify where a child may be struggling and provides a clear understanding of where they need to start in the program. No two children are the same.
Closing the learning gap – as measured by formal assessments – takes time, and the Kumon Method focuses on an active learning process that keeps students engaged and turns them into self-learners.
“The program works best when you are consistent, when you are doing homework regularly and consistently in coming to class,” Patel says. “Not only that, but it also depends on the individual student – how motivated they are, how punctual they are and how much the gap is. Some are quick, some are a little slower. But we accommodate all kinds of students.”
They develop critical, self-learning skills through daily worksheets. Two days a week they also complete assignments at a Kumon Centre where they can meet with an Instructor. By studying the worksheets and following the intended sequence, The Kumon Method can help your child overcome their learning gaps and develop them into lifelong self-learners.