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Kumon Math and Reading Center
Industry Education
Founded 1958
Headquarters Osaka, Japan (Global HQ); Teaneck, NJ (North America HQ)
Products Kumon Math and Kumon Reading; Kumon Chinese (in Hong Kong and China)
Website www.kumon.org ; www.kumongroup.com ; www.kumon.com
A Scio Township, Michigan Kumon Math and Reading Center in May 2012.

Kumon Education and Research Association of Japan is a corporation and an education brand created by Toru Kumon. The Kumon method is the mathematics and reading educational method which is practiced in the Kumon centers.[1]


In 1954, Toru Kumon began to teach his eldest son, who was having problems in mathematics at school. Through the support he provided to his son and to other children in the neighbourhood, Toru Kumon developed the Kumon Method. In 1958, Kumon opened the first Kumon Center in Osaka, Japan with the help of parents who were interested in the Method. In 1960, he founded the Kumon Institute of Education, after which Kumon Centers began to open around the world. As of March 2013, over 4,340,000 students have been enrolled under the Kumon Method in more than 7,500 Kumon Centers in 2 countries around the world.[2]


Kumon is a math and reading program intended to supplement rather than replace school lessons. Students do not work together as a class, they work on their own, moving on to the next level when they have achieved mastery of the previous level. Students are guided by trained Kumon Instructors and Assistants. Mastery is defined as speed (using a standard completion time) and accuracy.[3] They take an achievement test at the end of each level.

Company value[edit]

The Kumon family, led by Toru's wife Teiko, owns 35 percent of the company. Forbes magazine estimated in March 2009 that the entire company was currently worth over $499 million.[4]

Math program[edit]


  • Level 6A: Counting to 10, reading numbers
  • Level 5A: Reading numbers to 50, sequence of numbers
  • Level 4A: Reading numbers, writing numbers to 120
  • Level 3A: Numbers up to 120, adding up to 3
  • Level 2A: Adding up to 10
  • Level A: Horizontal addition, Subtraction from numbers up to 20
  • Level B: Vertical addition and subtraction
  • Level C: Basic multiplication, division
  • Level D: Long multiplication, long division, introduction to fractions
  • Level E: Fractions
  • Level F: Four operations of fractions, decimals
  • Level G: Positive/negative numbers, exponents, Algebraic expressions, Equations
  • Level H: Linear/simultaneous equations, inequalities, algebraic functions and graphs
  • Level I: Factorization, square roots, quadratic equations, Pythagorean theorem
  • Level J: Algebra II
  • Level K: Functions: Quadratic, fractional, irrational, exponential
  • Level L: Logarithms, basic limits, derivatives, integrals, and its applications
  • Level M: Trigonometry, straight lines, equation of circles.
  • Level N: Loci, limits of functions, sequences, differentiation
  • Level O: Advanced differentiation, integration, applications of calculus, differential equations.
  • Level X (elective level): Triangles, vectors, matrices, probability, statistics

Answer books are available for levels 6A to O.

Reading program[6][edit]

  • Level 7A: Look, Listen, Repeat
  • Level 6A: Reciting Words with Pictures
  • Level 5A: Letter Sounds
  • Level 4A: Consonant Combinations and Vowel Sounds
  • Level 3A: Advanced Vowel Sounds & Advanced Sounding Out
  • Level 2A: Functions of Words (nouns, verbs, adjectives), Reading Aloud
  • Level AI: Structure of Simple Sentences
  • Level AII: Sentence Structure, Sentence Topics, Thought Sequence
  • Level BI: Subject and Predicate
  • Level BII: Comparing and Contrasting
  • Level CI: Constructing Sentences
  • Level CII: Organizing Information
  • Level DI: Combining Sentences
  • Level DII: Main Idea, Understanding Paragraphs
  • Level EI: Clauses
  • Level EII: Reason and Result
  • Level FI: Referring Words, Interpreting Text
  • Level FII: Concision, Analysis of & Recounting Events from Paragraphs
  • Level G: Point Making, Theme, Story Elements, Summary
  • Level H: Summation
  • Level I: Persuasion
  • Level J: Critical Reading
  • Level K: Elements of Literature
  • Level L: Interpretation


Pencils and an eraser with the Kumon logo

The Kumon language program varies regionally.[7] For example, the Chinese reading program in China is different from the Chinese reading programs in Hong Kong and Singapore,[8][9][10] and the English program in the U.S., Canada, and the Philippines varies from the English program in the United Kingdom.[11] Additionally, Kumon Korea has other subjects, such as science, calligraphy, Korean, and Chinese characters, which are not available elsewhere.[12]

The Math program also varies. The math program for most countries goes up to Level O. However, in Japan, the math program is available up to Level V.[13] The Kumon method is controversial in Japan, with its critics, including the Japanese Ministry for Education, alleging that Kumon promotes rote learning as opposed to critical thinking.[14]


  1. ^ "Around the World in 80 ideas". Retrieved 2009-07-07. 
  2. ^ "List of all Kumon franchises by country". Kumon.org.  "List of all Kumon franchises by country". Kumon Group. 
  3. ^ Emily Yoffe: . Slate, November 4, 2006
  4. ^ Remedial Maths, Forbes.com, March 2, 2009, retrieved 2009-07-07
  5. ^ "Improve Math Skills | After School Math Program for Kids | Kumon North America". www.kumon.com. Retrieved 2015-05-31. 
  6. ^ "Improve Reading Skills & Comprehension | Reading Program for Kids | Kumon North America". www.kumon.com. Retrieved 2015-05-31. 
  7. ^ The Kumon maths, native language and foreign language programmes
  8. ^ 公文式语文, kumon.com.cn, retrieved 2009-09-03
  9. ^ Kumon 教材簡介, kumon.hk.com, retrieved 2009-09-03
  10. ^ Characteristics of the Chinese Programme 公文式华文母语课程的特点, sg.kumonglobal.com, retrieved 2009-09-03
  11. ^ Level descriptions - the English (or reading comprehension) programme in the UK
  12. ^ 구몬학습: 상품안내
  13. ^ "教科書と公文式教材: 算数・数学". Retrieved 2013-04-13. [dead link]
  14. ^ Rohlen, Thomas; LeTendre, Gerald (1999). Teaching and Learning in Japan. Cambridge University Press. p. 249. 

External links[edit]