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Did anyone take Kumon when they were younger? Any advice for a gr 11 who wants to apply for ChemE?

A photo of milliex51 milliex51
Hi! I really don't know where to begin but my teacher adviser has recommended me to take Kumon in the summer for at least two months to learn general math, instead of summer schooling a new credit. He wants to help me improve my basic skills in math. Frankly, I don't mind taking Kumon but have you guys been to it before? How was it? I'm aware that it's mostly for young kids and again I don't mind... I just really want to improve my math skills. I'm also planning to hire a calc & vectors & adv. functions tutor to teach me during the school year.

I currently have a 78 in Functions and my plan is to take calculus & vectors and advanced functions, along with biology, chemistry, physics, religious education (mandatory) and band next year. You may wonder why I'm taking bio but it's because my parents want me to take nursing (since it's easier to find a job when I graduated), and I guess it's my backup against applying for Chemical Engineering... Also I go to a non-semestered school and taking tests and exams for the 7 courses I take is stressful, which taking band helps to relieve the stress I encounter every day with units, tests, etc.

Anyway, I'm also terrible in Physics when it comes to tests (they are tricky due to the concepts) however, I try to do better on unit work since my teacher marks our unit work heavily than tests. Though, I'm scared when it comes for taking the exam... any tips?

My plan is to apply for Ryerson's ChemE/McMaster's Engineering, UofT's ChemE, and Ryerson's Nursing next year and any advice would be appreciated! :bom:

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A photo of Bscit Bscit
Ive never been to Kumon but its just a a bunch of tutors right? I didnt even know you an get them for GR 11.

Your functions mark does not seem too bad, 78. I mean its not the greatest mark but i dont think you have to go to Kumon for it. If you really want to get better, you probably just need a regular tutor, maybe a uni student.

I had an 80 in Functions and got an 83 and Adv and currently getting 85 in Calc. Not the best marks but I wouldnt get a tutor.

For physics, i dont really have any great advice. I was lucky that they sent midterms because my mark will probably drop (86 right now), all i can recommend is make some
friends in Grade 12 who have physics so you can get their tests.

One last thing, your parents want you to go to nursing as a backup but i dont know about you but that sounds boring. If you want a program that is easy to find a job in, go for computer science as it is atleast similar to engineering in some ways, seeing that you want to do engineering.
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A photo of annabella annabella
I am a centre assistant at kumon and frankly I don't think taking kumon for 2 months would be helpful at all. Kumon is only helpful when taken over a prolonged time (atleast more than a year) because kumon not only focuses on your accuracy but also your speed. So when you enroll in kumon they would make you take a placement test to see what your level of math is (judged on speed and accuracy) and placed accordingly and then they expect you to work your way up. I have already graduated university but when I wanted to brush up on my math skill they took my placement test and placed me to do basic math (additions).
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A photo of tukr tukr
I agree with annabella - also being a Kumon assistant, I can definitely say that the program is NOT a 2 month fix at all, and it's not designed to be. You can definitely get functions work at kumon in higher levels, in fact work up to 1st year university calculus.

Kumon also isn't a bunch of tutors - it's a lot of self-learning and self-discipline, which is why a lot of parents enroll their kids when they're young and I have a lot of friends who went through the program for like 10 years, and their work habits are splendid... (except for the ones who hated kumon so much, they don't do any work at all now)

One thing I would recommend is, talking to the Kumon Instructor and seeing where they would place you for 2 months of remedial work. Because if they're going to put you into fractions or something basic like annabella said, it'll be a complete waste of time (and it happens, trust me, I've seen it happen many times). If they do put you in the proper place, you'll probably need to get a tutor/ask them for additional help because they just send you home work packages to complete. It WILL, however reinforce basic math skills if that's what you're looking for - we're talking basic algebra, quadratic equations etc. but again, talk to your instructor because it usually takes kids at LEAST 2 months or so just to complete ONE level.

I guess, what I would do if I were you is look into kumon, see if it's right, but keep your options open. I personally would probably summer school a new credit (probably biology or chem) to take a load off, and then use the extra month to get a tutor and make sure you master all of high school math, from grade 9 through grade 11 (like make sure you can nail everything!!).

As for physics - how I managed to get my 90+ was taking notes and paying attention in class, reading my textbook a lot, changing my notes if needed, and doing problems. Practicing problems is so crucial, like you can never practice enough problems. Then you should be better prepared to write tests, as you'll know how to break down each problem because you've done something similar before! I studied for tests by sitting down with my textbook, calculator and a bowl of food for a couple of hours.

I'm going to end my excruciatingly long post soon, but as a future engineer and kumon employee, feel free to message me about whatever :)
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A photo of milliex51 milliex51
Wow, thank you guys so much for giving me great advices! I should really talk to the Kumon Instructor and look for options... I really don't want to waste my time and money. Anyway, thank you guys so much!!
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