We bought two sets of right brain training exercise books for 2 – 4 years old. The first is from Kumon and the other one is from Gakken. I really recommend the one from Gakken, I will tell you why shortly, but first let me describe what the books are for and what are their similarities.
From Kumon we bought a series of 4 different books that each focus on individual skills which are coloring, cutting, pasting, and folding.
From Gakken we bought a series of 3 different books. Each book focuses on a set of skills / concept instead of individual skill set.
For example we have a book for learning intellectual skills and it incorporates different skills like cutting, pasting, and folding and introduces different concepts like opposites, matching & writing. The second book is about learning to count and again it incorporates different skills like drawing & pasting. The third book combines cutting & pasting skills in one book.
Both the books from Kumon and Gakken are full of colorful pictures and cute characters, I think this is important cos it really helps to engage lilo to complete the activities in a book. They are also full of creative ideas that help your children to play & learn at the same time.
OK so now what are the benefit of Gakken books over the Kumon books:
- So maybe the obvious first, Gakken books’ size are bigger, so it gives children more space to work on the exercise in the books.
- I really like that it combines different concepts in one book so when we are working on the book at one sitting with just one book, lilo could be either pasting, cutting, folding, & coloring. This makes him able to work on one book longer because he doesn’t get bored so easily.
- But what I really like about Gakken workbook is that it allows children to learn about etiquette. Many of its exercise introduces appropriate behavior given certain settings e.g. how to brush your teeth, how to eat, how to make salad, how to go to the toilet etc. So instead of working on a particular skills to prepare him for kindergarten (which I think is the aim of Kumon books mainly), it also prepares him mentally to what is expected of him in daily life.
So yeah I really recommend using Gakken books to support your child’s right brain training at home.