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17 Nov 2008
How to Buy Franchised Math Learning Center
Frank Ho
Canada certified math teacher and founder of Ho Math and Chess
The era of using the idea of “cut and paste” some math worksheets together to open a math learning center has long gone. Children today living in a world which has a landslide difference from their parents, urban children do not run around in the rice fields and they hardly play with their neighbourhood children any more. Many children grow up surrounded by computer games and cell phones and downloaded music and they watch video clips on their cell phones. Simply put, it is an electronic age and video game world they grow up with. With the above scenery in mind then we look at what kinds of math worksheets today’s school children are working on. Lots of children are still working on old style of math drills and they dislike them.
Why most children hate old style drill math worksheets? They are downright boring, lifeless, and not interesting. Computerbased teaching suffers the same fate as the dull worksheets. There are no bounding among children and computers. Even to use the point that children learn by mimic their mom’s language to justify math drills, we still can not deny the fact that mom has different facial expressions, gestures, different tones and the most important mom has emotional feeling toward their children, and for these worksheets and computer offer none of them. This is why a human math tutor can not be “easily” replaced by the use of drill worksheets or a computerbased teaching method.
The fact of matter is also we need children to continue to practice to get the fluency of computation procedure to work out problems and for this we still need math worksheets.
To buy a math learning center, the far and fore most important investigation is to take a look at what kind of worksheets children will be working on. The worksheets are tied to the teaching philosophy or mission statement of the math learning center. For example, Ho Math and Chess started because its founder has a personal story to tell and the founder believes children learn best whiling having fun. It does not matter how wonderful your math tutors are but if children do not want to enrol or are not motivated to learn then the results will not be there.
What is wrong with old style math worksheets? Many worksheets have been produced by math educators but have these worksheets gone through the stages of been actually “sampled” by children to find out what they like or dislike? Children like to be challenged by not under stressful condition and children like puzzles and like to use their brains to think but not to the extent that they get the feeling of hopelessness. Children enjoy that problem can be solved by themselves step by step if they put a bit efforts to try and are able to think themselves. The difficulty is how we, as math educators, are going to create some math worksheets to possess these characteristics?
A good math worksheet has a clear goal, has a message to convey to children by the creator and children are interesting to hunt for the solution by going through some kind of logic process. There are very minimum efforts required to explain the question and even though the length of thinking may be long, children do not even realize that. Good math worksheets are teasing, interesting, and addictive. The difficulty level can be low or can be high and there is an uniform style across all worksheets with a theme. These kinds of worksheets are good to train children’s basic math and motivate children to learn. A good example is Franko puzzles which combine Suduko, math and chess all in one. Children learn logic, chess and improve math at the same time and all on one worksheet.
Children like mazes. They are adventuresome and interesting. It gives children a feeing of reward when the problem is solved and children feel better when they are challenged mentally. The difficulty is how to marry math and mazes? The problem has been solved by integrating math into chess mazes. This is the birth of Frankho Chess Mazes. A chess maze not only is fun to play but it also teaches geometry concepts and trains children’s visualization and orientation.
Some children were born with sensitive number sense but most children can be trained to be more alert with numbers, patterns, and symbols. Chess serves as a good tool to combine with math so to provide an innovative way of training children to be more aware with number patterns, and relationship between numbers.
By use the technology of Geometry Chess Symbols invented by Mr. Frank Ho, children are able to work on an array of different math worksheets, which are to be more entertaining, more fun and more interesting.
For more details on how math and chess integrated worksheets can raise children’s math marks with fun, visit www.mathandchess.
It is my view, that a good math learning center has the potential to become a worldwide franchised math learning center by firstly producing an oneofitskind and innovative worksheets which children truly like and enjoy working on them. Secondly, these worksheets must be streamlined and has an uniform look to have the potential to become an signature product. Because of these extremely unconventional worksheets, a business model can be created to also streamline the teaching flowchart to provide an efficient and smooth teaching method.
No success can be achieved if the unique math worksheet which is the key ingredient of franchising a math learning center does not exist. Not only these worksheets are truly interesting to children, they also can improve children’s math ability, otherwise they are just fad and will not have a long lasting effect.
Good worksheets motivate children to learn and at the same time they also improve children’s true math ability.
When buying a franchised math learning center, one should look for the true substance to see what a math learning center can really offer whereas others can not.
Frank Ho
