What is 'contraction' in Kumon Japanese The difference between summary and Kumon's goal of reading comprehension.


Japanese (language)

t f B! P L

In Kumon Japanese, you will learn the concept of 'contraction' between the G and L teaching materials. The word "summary" appears in all Japanese language materials, but the word "contraction" may be unfamiliar to you. In this article, we will try to understand what kind of skills Kumon is trying to help you acquire by organising the concept of "contraction" that you will learn in Kumon Japanese.

Difference between "contraction" and "summary

The word "contraction" is not an original word of Kumon, but a general term. Let's check the meaning in the dictionary.

To reduce in scale to a simplified form. Also, the thing.

The nuance is similar to 'summary', with one major difference. Whereas 'summary' is mainly used for texts, 'contraction' is also used for things other than texts.

When 'summarising', it is more like extracting important sentences. The more logically structured a text is, the more structured it is, where the theme of the whole text or paragraphs can be written. Summarising is the extraction of the important sentences, and is particularly powerful in Western-rule papers.

On the other hand, 'condensation' has a stronger nuance of 'shrinking' than of extracting. For example, the aspect ratio of an image or map is also called a scale, and the word 'contraction' has the image of reducing this scale to summarise the whole text.

There are many texts that do not fit into the Western format, such as narrative texts, essays, and Japanese (Asian) papers from a long time ago. Even if it is structurally impossible to extract important sentences from these texts, they can be reduced. It could be said that 'contraction' is a technique that can be used to understand a wider range of texts.

Contractions in Kumon Japanese

So how is 'contraction' handled in Kumon Japanese?

Contractions are dealt with in the six Kumon Japanese language teaching materials GII, HII, III, J, K and L. From G to I, students deal with single sentences, while from J to L, students deal with contractions based on both material and critical texts.

It is worth noting that from J onwards, multiple texts are treated. In examinations, most questions deal with a single text, and the difficulty level depends on the difficulty and quantity of the text. However, once you move on to university, you will not be able to complete a thesis in a single text, but will have to read and understand it while referring to previous research and experimental results.

In the first place, most texts you read in real life are not as complete as a thesis. Many books published by publishers are formatted differently from papers, and news and blogs take a more disorganised form. Emails and chats are even more incomplete and fragmented, but you are much more likely to read these texts if you are working.

Learn more practical reading skills with 'contractions'

We have touched on the concept of 'contraction' as handled in Kumon Japanese. While general Japanese language study often deals with 'summary', 'contraction' is unique in that it covers a wider range of different types of texts. Because of its distinctive method, some have questioned whether Kumon can truly help students acquire reading comprehension skills, but the reading skills it aims to have students acquire are rather more extensive and practical than those of other materials.

This attitude is clearly expressed in the theme of contraction.