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Sunday, March 29, 2009

E.nopi Math vs Kumon Math vs UCMAS Mental Arithmetic

E.nopi Math or Kumon Math or UCMAS Mental Arithmetic?.... During last year’s year end school holidays, I had a little time during my confinement to hunt for some enrichment classes for my son. Ya, ya, I know I was not supposed to run about during confinement. But I’m just about one of those people who finds it difficult to follow rules :). My eldest boy just only started to speak properly at the beginning of last year. As such, he was very much behind in many areas – numbers being one of them. I was frantically looking for some classes to help him boost his skills and confidence. I just knew that once I resume work, I would not have the time to do more for him. Sigh!

I have checked out E.nopi, Kumon Math and UCMAS Mental Arithmetic. This is what I’d like to share with you. Please note that this is just my opinion. I would love to hear yours too.

  • E.nopi and Kumon are direct competitors. Kumon is more established. In both cases, they offer Math and English, and the availability is dependent on the respective centre. Each centre has its own operating days and timing for classes – you just have to see which one fits you. Your kid would need to attend twice weekly. The key syllabus is on basic math skills (E.nopi calls it Basic Thinking Math). Young children can start from basic numbers 1,2,3,... and slowly evolving into the principles and foundation of math. The correct writing strokes will also be part of the lesson. In both cases, the level of Math in which a child participates is dependent on current competency level. Students will move from level to level and at the higher levels, they will go into algebra, probability, etc etc. The later part and the more advance levels – this is where I'm not sure how the syllabus differ between Kumon and E.nopi. After all, I was only assessing for my 4+ year old son.

  • The franchisees in both E.nopi and Kumon respectively explained that it’s all about practice makes perfect. The child will go to the class to do the worksheets (with some assessment) and they will go back with homework which they have to complete before the next class. They are taught NOT to use fingers to count. Besides obtaining the skill set, the programs would cultivate discipline, self learning and independence in children.

  • E.nopi has an additional area which is called Critical Thinking Math which concentrates on problem solving, pattern/relationship recognition, geometry, reasoning, etc -- another area leading to math. This is where Kumon does not have. But since Kumon is concentrating on basic math, a child under Kumon will progress 'faster' in basic math than a child under E.nopi. At the end of the day, it really depends on what you want for your child.

  • For my son, I have chosen E.nopi because:
    a) The worksheets are more colourful and interesting - for kids - which I think is good because it is not chicken feet to engage the attention of a young active child. Fun and colourful worksheets help.
    b) Critical Thinking Math – I thought my son was not able to do, but surprising ok – and in fact, he loves it
    c) Use of apparatus to teach concepts – visual aid

  • The fees are more expensive for E.nopi RM160 whereas Kumon is RM120-130. No regrets! My son was initially very weak in numbers - last Dec he couldn't count 1-10. Now he is able to count, and just by looking, able to know how many the qty is and progressing into math - different combination making up to 10. As for UCMAS, I didn't do much check simply because the teacher told me that the child, at the very minimum, must be familiar with 1-100. My son then was still struggling with 1-10. What I do told is that UCMAS Mental Arithmetic uses abacus and the one quality that they are building in a child is photographic memory – I don’t know how so but I have heard amazing things about what a child can do.

  • A final note. Go and see for yourself. Go through free trial sessions. See which one your child finds it more interesting. Figure out what you want for your child. Assess your confidence in the owner/franchisee. And good luck to you!


Anonymous said...

Hi I have attended a UCMas and was informed that as long as the child can write 1-10 he can learn mental arithmetic and is no 1-100.


3R's Mom said...

Thanks for your feedback. Hmm wonder why that franchisee told me so. How's UCMAS? Good?

Anonymous said...

Hi, I just want to follow up with you to see how your son is doing with Enopi. Is he still interested in the workbooks now that he's been doing this for awhile? Are you seeing good results from the program? Is he enrolled in the Enopi English program and if so, how is it?


Joanne said...

Hi Meg,
yes Ryan is still on E.nopi Math and I actually see good improvement in him. He has no problem following in school as a result. Of course every now and then, we have a give a little push for them to do work and go to school :) My area doesn't have E.nopi english. Thinking of Cosmotots instead.

Enopi Cupertino said...

Thanks for your sharing.
I work in Enopi in California and We know what is important beetween students and teachers. I saw many students developed their Math and Language arts in our Enopi.

Thanks again

Best Regards,

Joanne said...

Thanks Shawn for the encouragement. I intend to put all my kids thru Enopi. Unfortunately the centre has yet to offer the language course.

Fledge said...

Hi Joanne, thanks for this very helpful sharing on Enopi & Kumon. Question - you mentioned that Enopi & Kumon are all about practice. What about mental arithmetic - does Enopi & Kumon teach that as well?

pankaj said...

Thank you for another great article. Where else could anyone get that kind of information in such a perfect way of writing?

kathleen said...


May I know which Enopi centre you are sending your son to? I pay a visit to the one in Puchong, I don't like the environment.

Thanks and regards,

jessie said...

Could anyone tell me of a UCMAS Centre in Markham, Ontario, Canada. I would like to go and check it out for myself. Also, I cant decide on which would be better programme for English and Math for my daughter. She is 7 yrs old. I hear that Kumon emphasises on speed in math. Thats a skill thats as important as accuracy.

Business Advisor #1 said...

They may sometimes get good results, butE.nopi in ILLINOIS, is trying to cheats. First day I worked there, the owner asked my age, when I told her my true age (60), all she said was "HMMM"
I think she thought I was too old to work with children.
The E.nopi owner then said I needed to work the first 4 hours for no pay to learn. After working 12 hours, she said I need more training, so I needed to come in for another hour with no pay. When I said I wouldn't work for no pay she said, "then don't come in again" Now I can't get her to pay me for what i worked. Bad person's name is Hera Jeong in Buffalo Grove.
E.Nopi may not charge that much for tutoring, but they keep cost down by shorting the tutors there.

Business Advisor #1 said...

Just to let you know. E.nopi does try to keep tutors and students happy. Once they found out we were unhappy, they contacted us, found out the details and straightened out the misunderstanding. They are reputable.

lori said...

I want to thank you for your review on ucmas,
it was very enlightening. Would anyone know anything about the mississauga, ont. location?

Anonymous said...

hi guys...i'm eldest daughter has been to kumon for 3+ years the beginning, practices in kumon was very helpful since it concentrates on addition, subtraction, multiplication n division...and during in primari 1 n 2 she was quite advanced compared to her peers. but when entering primary 3 during when the school math syllabus is more on clock, volume, mass, 3D,2Dshapes, etc, she became very backward. also when it comes to solving problems questionaire. i plan to stop her from kumon n try out enopi, in addition to her private tuition class. Wow! i guess that'll cost me a fortune, just for her alone...thx...

Anonymous said...

Hi Anonymous,
Wow, your comment makes me a bit worry. I'm just intended to send my 6 years old kid to Kumon next Year Jan 2010. And yet,it sounds not worth to invest on Kumon's program?

Well, would be the sllyabus of P3 suddenly different from P1 and P2, your daughter needs a little bit of time to adjust herself?

BTW, Can you tell us which Kumon your daughter has been attended?

Anonymous said...

My children are taking both Kumon and Enopi at the same time. For mathematical speed and accuracy Kumon is the best. For the ability to translate a word problem into a number sentence Enopi seem to have the edge. I notice a different approach to which a child is handled. In kumon, true to its slogan to turn their student self-independent, the center rarely intervene in the lesson. Instead, students are provided a blue book to discover and understand step-by-step solution. My daughter since then develops that wonderful habit to work on her own and still excel in school. Enopi, on the otherhand, believes that a student should not be exposed to unnecessary irritation/ pressure and that learning must be cultivated in playful environment(noticed their worksheets?)thereby making tutorial as part of their system.

Joanne said...

Thanks. Thats very good insight :)

Anonymous said...

my daughter attended UCMAS for past 1.5 year; very good program but too much work for kids. my kid is only 7.5 (grade 2) ans she is already in level 7 of this program. now i started thinking that maybe it is too much for her age.

Joanne said...

Actually, all you have to do is watch your kid. If you detect strain and stress then perhas its too much. but if he enjoys it, let it be.

Alex Wong said...


i just came about this blog, which i would like to share some with you all. U C MAS is minimum age is 4 -12 years old (older age is acceptable but preferable around that age group), and requirement are: able to write numbers 1-10, recognize the numbers 1-10 and able to grasp the pencil.

From this minimum requirement the child may start to attend the class. further what it is emphasize in this program; C.O.M.I.C. = Concentration, Observation, Memory, Imagination and lastly Calculation.

Due to this are the 5 main mental built up, which this is also the reason why the child can calculate so fast.

Anyhow for further info please feel free to drop me an email at


Anonymous said...

Hi, I send my son to UCMas, but he doesn't seem to be grasping it well. Do you or anything know of any aids, online tutorials or other ways to get my son to like and practice UCMas?

Anonymous said...

E.nopi Helps Sharpen Your Child’s Mind, See here for more information:

Vani said...

Hi , My daughter is in E.nopi taking all three of the subjects English, Math and Critical Thinking . She is just catching up all very well. As far i could sense is that there is not much difference between Kumon and E nopi's program. The reason i chose E nopi was that due to less kids teachers were able to give my daughter much attention. It was like private tutoring . Secondly , if kids wants to study under the table ..all the teachers go ahead and make the kids study in that pattern.

Jocelyn said...

sent my son to maths monkey when he was 4+ (now 6), he loves it, cause they use games to teach maths, suitable for kids which does not like numbers like my son, seen improvements within a month, but now he's 6 and i found that maths monkey's are a bit slow, thinking might change to enopi.

Lindsey said...

Hi there, I have 2 kids aged 5 years and 1.5 years. Joanne, I really like your blog as it's so informative. Thanks for all your sharing. I would also like to add my thoughts- my 5 year old started CMA classes in SS19 Subang Jaya about 6 months ago. I'm happy that she has grasped addition and subtraction well by now and can use the abacus like an expert in the Chinese medical hall! Really cute to see her working on her mini abacus =)

Ben Lim said...

My son goes to Globalmaths Mental Arithmetic USJ4.They are well known in Subang Jaya and Puchong for their experience teachers and proven results. Just after 3 months, my son able to do sum of 1 digits 5 rows mentally. That is amazing. Besides that, they even help my son's school maths when he needed it. After research enopi, kumon and math monkey. I find that they are all just like school maths tuition. Just the brand only. The materials can be learn and bought from book store. well, That's just my opinion. Is better to invest my child in a lifetime skill like mental arithmetic and piano which trains their right and left brain. logic thinking will come in later when he is 9 - 10 years old. I will be sending him to the globalart class this hoilday to enhance his creativity and also put more practice in his abacus.

Anonymous said...

Parents need to understand it's not about doing the work faster. E.nopi wants to build a strong foundation with every student. By offering Basic Thinking and Critical Thinking, the child has a stronger foundation than a Kumon student that only works on numbers and speed. Also - E.nopi has booklets in color, not worksheets that are black and white. Although there is repetition, I noticed the workbooks show variations of exercises and it's not the same problems over and over.

E.nopi is fun, too. My 6-year old loves it! Yes, tuition is more than Kumon, but you get what you pay for in this world. I chose quality over quantity. My son started E.nopi when he was 3 and a half years old. He's already learning subtraction and he's in Kindergarten! E.nopi really has made a difference in our lives!

Anonymous said...

Hi all, all these programs such as Kumon, Enopi, UCMAS Mental Arithmetic, Math Monkey,
Globalmaths Mental Arithmetic, CMA, Globalart Class etc are like computer software. However, if the hardware (eg microprocessor) is not good enough, then the software will not perform to its utmost performance. Thus, I have sent my daughter to learn Transcendental Meditation when she was 4 years old. It seems that her brain can "turn" faster (microprocessor with higher speed). After that, I "installed software" such as ballet dance, phonics etc on her, she learns fast. Worth for you to find out more about Transcendental Meditation.


Ben and Shaun said...

Hi, I believe that Kumon and Enopi are suitable for kids from ages 4 - 6. However, does it help to continue at 7 years old? My son was in enopi at 5 years old. He is going to Primary One next year and I have decided to stop his classes. I believe that once he has the good foundation of doing calculation fast and accurately, it's sufficient. Our national syllabus for Maths in no longer in English. My boy can solve problems in English, but he can't do the same if the question is in BM. So, I decided to start doing Maths revision in BM instead.

Arunakizuya said...

Hi there, last this year Abacus Mental Arithmetic get more popular at Malaysia. Do you hear anything about EZCount China? I hear it use Abacus and Mental Arithmetic same like UCMAS and Kumon. The fees i think around RM80 per month. Feel free to email me at if you know more about EZCount China. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

I have also researched on both E.nopi and Kumon. I was interested to franchise Kumon originally. And after my research I agree that E.nopi offers a much better curricula for both English and Math. At the end of the day, you want your child to "understand" what he/she learned using critical thinking.

Now I am going to talk to my brother to transfer his kids to E.nopi from Kumon.

Anonymous said...

I agreed with Lim. the hardware is very important.all this also depend on yr child characteristic. That are 3 basic type of child which u must know yr child is visual( seeing & reading), auditory ( listening & speaking) orkinesthetic ( touching & doing). by knowing this it actually help u to deside which programme will help them. if u put an autitory kid to mental math or requre not to speak..he will get bored very soon because he need to transfer info through listening and express one's own views and ideas.know yr child before invest to the programme.

Anonymous said...

BrainBuilder (Math Enrichment Centre)
Prepare Your Child For Success, develop your child to have
I. Problem solving ability
II. Critical thinking
III. Creative thinking
IV. Enquiring thinking
It’s more than just Maths.
We also have
* Intensive Programmes for international scholarship entry exams & maths competitions.
*Power IQ School Holiday Workshop

Anonymous said...

Hello All,

I've had my order daughter in both Kumon Read and Math, along with my other family members and friends for a number of years. My comments will be more specific to my personal experiences with Kumon, through my daughter. We don't have a e.Nopi in my area, but we did visit a center while in Chicago and had an opportunity to speak with the center Directory. I was just wondering what the hype was about really.

One thing I would say is e.Nopi is clearly a Korean Knock-off! They not only copied Kumon, they did a bad job at it. The Center "Instructor" I met had No educational background and didn't even have a strong math or reading trade in her prior experiences. This person was ALL business. The local Kumons in my area have much more personable and knowledgable instructors. Again, I can't say that every Kumon in the US is the same.

I had a chance to look at the reading material for the kids, and yes they WHERE more colorful than the older Kumon stuff, but since this Kumon has updated their packets. Honestly though, my concern for my daughter was that she was happy and learning, both where try for Kumon, so I can't justify paying $50 more per month for a more colorful packet.

When it comes to Math. My local school system is not that bad, so the critical thinking skills are meanly taught there. To me Kumon compliments what my daughter learns in school. From the description of the e.Nopi math material it sounded like the curriculum would conflict with school, just causing confusion.

My take is KUMON all the way. Why go for a knock off, when you can have the real thing!

Anonymous said...

I think UCMAS is a fantastic brain development programme for kids.

Anonymous said...

As a former enopi teacher, I would like to let you know that the effectiveness of enopi is highly dependent on the teacher's capability. Make sure you check with your children frequently how interactive the teacher is to him. I'd think this would go with Kumon and anyother institution as well. Most of the cases I see the problem is not with the program but with the teacher, any of those program should lead your child to a stronger math foundation. If you found a good teacher, just stuck with him/her regardless of the program.

Anonymous said...

No, Enopi is not the right program to study as it’s lengthy, not worth the money invested, and the worst part is that the program do not suitable to our Malaysia school syllabus!!!
One of my friends enrolled her kid few tears ago and after 3-4 years of study, her kid still doing addition and subtraction. When checked with the instructor, the reason given was that the kid had not mastered the basic! According to her, she had invested more than RM5000 on it and she cannot see any result and the program also cannot help her kid in school too, because the school had been doing other topics like time, money, length, weight, volume, multiplication and division. It is just not worth the ROI (Return of Investment)!
Another problem of the program is it does not bring your kids to anywhere. Unlike other program, which I just discovered called ‘BrainBuilder’, that will enable your kids to participate in the World Class International Mathematical Competition like ICAS (International Competition and Assessments for Schools) by University of New South Wales, Australia, or MASMO (Malaysia ASEAN Mathematical Olympiads) by MOEMS, United States, and many more. These competitions will serve as a measurement how well is the program and how our kids benefit from it. The other good point about BrainBuilder is that their program is more align with our Malaysia school syllabus.
Well, those are just my personal opinion on some of the program currently offered in the market. Since there is more and more such programs setting up, it is good for us as parents to do some homework and find out more on a particular program. Choosing a wrong program will not only wasting our money, but it can also destroy the interest of a kid in that particular subject or even worst the interest of learning!
So, Enopi is a ‘NO’ for me.

Anonymous said...

I went nuts comparing Kumon and Enopi and UCMas and finally find a teacher in USJ 1 near Chee Wen - she got good program for English and maths using abacus, last time my boy always cannot listen properly but after about 6 months he is more alert. I don't want to send him for tuition class and want him to learn how to be more independent in school. I think lern to be responsible person is more important than being good in class. - I hear my friends kids getting all A but not happy - but parents very happy
So sorry because my English is not so good but you can contact Teacher Angeline - 0162117626 - she is very strict but my son said very caring.

Joanne said...

Hey thanks for the tip :)

Anonymous said...

want to check how your kids doing with Enopi ??

Kaieza Damien said...

Hi there! great post. Thanks for sharing a very interesting and informative content, it is a big help to me and to others as well, keep it up!
Every student gets the advantage of individualized math help. After learning about your student’s current skill-level and learning style, we generate an individualized learning plan that specifically addresses their needs. We then teach the curriculum at a pace appropriate to your child.

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Anonymous said...

Not only is Enopi a Kumon knock off but they are actually recruiting Kumon instructors/corporate employees and opening locations right next to Kumon centers. Shady business tactics. Kumon is a proven method, makes sense, and my children are gifted mathmatically because of the skills they learned there.
A big eNOpi for me.

diana said...

Anyone knows about the difference between IMA, CMA and UCMAS?

Anonymous said...

DO you have E.Nopi Or Kumon in INdia ?

Isha Sharma said...

Thanks for sharing up–to-date on this subject! I find it is very informative and very well written one! Keep up on this quality!
mental arithmetic

Anonymous said...

My son has been attending Kumon since 7 and now he is 9.

Personally what I like about Kumon, is it builds discipline in my very active son. It helps him to stay focus to complete the task. He progressed much better than I expected. My son actually appreciates Kumon as it does help him in his school work.

It is tough to have worksheets daily and it is even tougher for the kid to stay focus to complete the worksheets UNATTENDED.But once the "habit" is built,it becomes second nature to them.

It also encourages self-correction and eventually self-learning. These are useful life long skills which can be applied to all areas of studies and work life.

Worksheets may look boring but who says learning has to be always FUN AND COLOURFUL!!!;-P

Anonymous said...

A new program is out there called Taptor, and you do it through your ipad. It's still developing, but it has every potential to beat the pants off of both Enopi and Kumon for half the cost. Check it out. It's managed study without a centre. Some of you might still want a center, some of you might want simple managed study. Just to let you know there's a new player in the market....Tech is going to change a lot of how this works in the future.

Anonymous said...

I have gone for all three of them and I would like to tell u that without doubt KUMON IS THE BEST!!!

Anonymous said...

Brainobrain's Advanced Abacus Brain Development Programme (for 4 - 14 yr children)

Abacus Mental Arithmetic
International NLP
Personality Analysis
Group Discussions and Role Plays
Good Habits and Etiquette
Brain Gym
Vocabulary and Spelling Skills Observation & Concentration Skills Quick and Retentive Memory Positive Belief System
Leadership Skills
Attitude Formation
Mental Gymnastics
Creative Art and Story Writing

Anonymous said...

hi there, may I know where can i find more info on TAPTOR. Just google but can't find anything..

Anonymous said...

They are all just cons dreamt up to take advantage of the concern you feel for your child's progress in school. Do a bit of mental maths with your kid while they're in the bath - go through their maths homework with them after school for a few minutes every day and stop giving money to the frauds

LinLin Loh said...

how about Math Monkey?Anyone check out this before

Anonymous said...

there's new method to learn maths, where it just opened last year in USJ. It is through Play to learn maths. It is more fun, and kids will not reluctant to learns numbers, puzzle, and other elementary maths.all the kids enjoy it.
there's facebook page, "Playfacto Malaysia"

Anonymous said...

I think ucmas is waste of use in real studies.when something out of sight its outof use of son went for 3 years but never seem to use it.

regents prep said...

SAT and ACT both are very popular and have equal importance and result. And all colleges and universities accept both these. And we know SAT TEST is long term process but very important. How we can get good composite scores.

Adele Chan said...

Great to read your sharing. You are a fantastic mum and knowing the important of education.
Let me do share with you a centre of Science Hands-on Experiment which gather the children to do science experiment with new topic for every single week. The syllabus is from UK, London. The centre located at Bandar Puteri Puchong. You may check out their program. The centre name is Mother Nature Science. I have their contact, 0132669623.
Fyi, I send my kids to UC Mas and I'm happy with their progress as they are sensitive to numbering and pretty fast when doing their maths homework from school.
Once again, thanks for your sharing here!

Anonymous said...

My daughter attended UCMAS in South Africa from the age 9 till 12. She gained all benefits from the program (concentration, observation, memory, imagination, creativety, judgment, application, reasoning and self- confidence). UCMAS is a braindevelopment program and will help the child in all subjects at school, not only maths. The child will stay for 3 years on the program and gain many skills for life time. My daughter is now in high school and still have all the skills she mastered at UCMAS. Her average at school has always been 90% + - even being in hostel at school.

Anonymous said...

I fully agreed with the point depend on how committed is the teacher rather than choose the brand name. This year I have sent my kid to brain builder which is just new opened in Tanjung Tokong. The teacher quality is lousy. Simple addition my son did wrong she can also mark it correctly. I was there when she marked the paper so when confront her she said overlooked the number. And weekly homework which assigned by teacher, herself always miss out for marking. I have feedback few times and happened again yesterday not mark again and for some questions my son does not know how to do, the teacher not bother to go through with him. I have decided to stop after this semester. So my personal experience is when open too many franchises and without control the quality will drop.

Richard Jakson said...

Thanks i like your blog very much , i come back most days to find new posts like this!Good effort. I learn it.

Brain Development

E.nopi said...

Thanks for selecting Enopi. We will do our best for giving good care and education for children. Time to time, E-nopi instructors provide consultation and communicate with parents regarding their children’s progress on a regular basis. See more review at:

Esthler Chan Sooi Ling said...
Kids activities!!!

Esthler Chan Sooi Ling said...

Top 5 kids science activities


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Anonymous said...

I did not see any improvement with my child at Kumon. He has made the most improvement at JEI learning centers. Since private tutoring is too expensive for me, this center has a very low student to instructor ratio of 5:1. Also, they don't make him just repeat things but learn critical thinking. If there is a center in your area you should give them a try.

Saurabh said...

My Kids are going to Best Brains in Buffalo Grove by name Best Brains. My daughter is 9 yrs and son 4 yrs.I see a great difference in both of them.My daughter is in Talent Development Program for last 2 years in school for both English and Maths.My son can write his name,date, number up to 100, started reading by himself or little help. BestBrains maths is more logical and develop logicsal thinking ability.1 sheet kids have to work with teacher in class and rest remaining 6 sheet kid need to finish at home.Parents are not suppose to help kids in homework because they want to see kid's development and understanding.Less expensive then Kumaon or others.It is worth trying atleast..

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KidbuxBlog said...

Thanks sharing, Kumon’s learning method takes students through a structured programme involving specially developed worksheets. Kumon constantly evaluates and revises the worksheets of all its programmes to ensure there is nothing hindering smooth progress. More info at:

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