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Kumon’s History

Timeless and borderless,
Kumon does its all for each and every individual.

Kumon’s aspiration, which began with a parent and a child,
is to maximize the potential of each individual through learning.
The Kumon Method is now reaching people all around the world.

Japan

Worldwide

1950

1954
Toru Kumon, a high school math teacher, began providing education based on the concept of self-learning to his son, Takeshi, then a second grader in elementary school. He wrote numerous calculation problems on loose-leaf paper for his son. This was the origin of the Kumon Method.
1955
The first Math Center using Kumon worksheets is opened in Moriguchi City, Osaka.
1958
The office of the Osaka Institute of Mathematics is established in Osaka City. Toyonaka Uenozaka Center where Toru and Teiko Kumon instructed students together (circa 1965).

1960

1962
The Osaka Institute of Mathematics Ltd. is established. The first Kumon Center is opened in Shinjuku, Tokyo. From 1959 to 1962 the Kumon office was located in a rented room inside this residence in Osaka.
1963
Kumon’s Tokyo Office is opened.
1969
The total number of subject enrollments in Japan exceeds 10,000.

1970

1972
The company name, Osaka Institute of Mathematics, is changed to Osaka Kumon Institute of Mathematics.
The Tokyo Kumon Institute of Mathematics Ltd. is established.
1974
The Secret of Kumon Math (published by Koseido Publishing) becomes a best seller.
  • The Kumon Method became widely known through the publication of this first book written by the founder, Toru Kumon. The book officially introduced the aims and theory of the Kumon Method for the first time, and included numerous concrete cases of instruction and learning effectiveness. The book generated a tremendous response and the company was flooded with inquiries.
1977
Kumon begins publishing workbooks for preschoolers.
The total number of subject enrollments in Japan exceeds 200,000.
1979
The first Kumon Instructors Conference is held in Japan.
  • Kumon began holding the Instructors Conference annually from this year to provide Instructors with an opportunity to share the results of their instruction and voluntary study group activities with their colleagues from around Japan. The theme of the first conference was “In Search of Better Instruction.”
The total number of subject enrollments in Japan exceeds 500,000.

1980

1980
The Kumon English Program (for native Japanese speakers) is launched.
1981
The Kumon Japanese Program (for native Japanese speakers) is launched.
The first Instructors Conference on Learners with Special Needs is held.
  • At this annual conference, Instructors develop their understanding of how to instruct students with special needs and receive practical advice for how to apply what they learn in their Centers.
Both the Osaka Kumon Institute of Mathematics Ltd. and the Tokyo Kumon Institute of Mathematics Ltd. are restructured from limited liability companies into joint-stock corporations.
The total number of subject enrollments in Japan exceeds 1 million.
1982
The Osaka Kumon Institute of Mathematics Co., Ltd. and the Tokyo Kumon Institute of Mathematics Co., Ltd. merge to become the Kumon Institute of Mathematics Co., Ltd.
1983
The company name, Kumon Institute of Mathematics, is changed to Kumon Institute of Education.
  • The first Kumon logo is created.
1984
The Kumon Japanese Learning Program (for foreign learners) is launched.
1985
The Kumon Penmanship Program is launched.
1986
The Kumon French and German programs (for native speakers of Japanese) are launched.
1988
Kumon Publishing Co., Ltd. is established.
1989
The total number of subject enrollments in Japan exceeds 1.5 million.

1990

1995
Company founder Toru Kumon passes away.
1996
Kumon Lifelong Integrated Learning Co., Ltd. (Kumon Penmanship and Calligraphy) is established.
1997
Kumon President Takeshi Kumon passes away.

2000

2000
Kumon is reorganized into a group management structure.
The Kumon Toru Research Institute of Education Co., Ltd. is established.
2001
Joint research into the effects of learning therapy on senile dementia begins.
The first Kumon World Leaders’ Seminar is held.
  • Held under the theme, “Kumon in the 21st century and my personal mission,” this training session saw Kumon staff in key positions from around the world gather together to discuss topics such as The Kumon Way and how best to share Kumon’s values.
The first English Immersion Camp is held.
  • The children who participate in this camp take on the challenge of total immersion in English. The camp was initiated with the intention of fostering capable people who can contribute to global society by joining together with people from different countries around the world.
The new Kumon logo is created.
2003
All Kumon signboards are replaced with the new Kumon logo signboards.
2007
Activities for child-raising support begin.
2008
Kumon celebrates the 50th anniversary of its founding.

2010

2010
Kumon begins offering its educational services to universities.
2011
Global Communication & Testing Co., Ltd. (GC&T) is established.
GC&T is in charge of promoting the TOEFL Junior® and TOEFL Primary® tests in conjunction with its partner ETS (Educational Testing Service), the world’s largest nonprofit test development organization.
2012
The Baby Kumon Program is launched.
2014
100th Anniversary of the birth of Toru Kumon.

Worldwide

1970

1974
The first overseas Kumon Math Center opens in New York.
It was with the opening of a Kumon Center in New York in 1974 that the provision of Kumon Method study outside Japan first began. Initially, most students at this Center were the children of Japanese expatriates. However, as the effectiveness of the Kumon Method became more widely known, local children began to enroll. Today, Kumon has established itself as a provider of quality education for local children provided by local Instructors in many countries around the world.
1975
Center opens in Taiwan.
1977
Center opens in Brazil.
1979
Center opens in Germany.
The number of Kumon students in Taiwan topped 1,000.

1980

1980
An affiliated company is established in São Paulo, Brazil.
  • Completion of the Kumon South America head office building (August 1994)
An affiliated company is established in Düsseldorf, Germany.
1982
An affiliated company is established in Los Angeles, USA.
1983
The total number of overseas subject enrollments exceeds 10,000.
1984
An affiliated company is established in Sydney, Australia.
1988
An affiliated company is established in Hong Kong.
An affiliated company is established in Toronto, Canada.
A public elementary school in the United States implements Kumon Math. When the vice principal of Sumiton Elementary School in Alabama saw a TV program about Kumon she became convinced of the efficacy of the method and felt that it could really help her students to get over their aversion to math. This was the first time that the Kumon Method was utilized in regular school classes outside of Japan. The results were even greater than expected and this achievement was hailed as the “Miracle of Sumiton” in a variety of media. This publicity led to greater awareness of Kumon and the establishment of more and more Centers around the world.

1990

1990
The Kumon English Program (for native English speakers) is launched in Australia.
The Kumon English Program is currently provided in 23 countries and regions around the world.
An affiliated company is established in London, UK.
1991
An affiliated company is established in Madrid, Spain.
The total number of overseas subject enrollments exceeds 200,000.
1993
The Kumon Chinese Program (for native Chinese speakers) is launched in Taiwan.
The Kumon Chinese Program is currently provided in six countries and regions around the world.
The total number of enrollments in the world exceeds 2 million.
1994
The Kumon Portuguese Program (for native Portuguese speakers) is launched in Brazil.
1995
An affiliated company is established in Singapore.
An affiliated company is established in Santiago, Chile.
An affiliated company is established in Mexico City, Mexico.
An affiliated company is established in Shanghai, China.
The total number of overseas subject enrollments exceeds 500,000.
1996
An affiliated company is established in Johannesburg, South Africa.
An affiliated company is established in Manila, the Philippines.
1997
A Kumon Office is established in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
1998
An affiliated company is established in Bangkok, Thailand.
An affiliated company is established in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
The total number of overseas subject enrollments exceeds 1 million.

2000

2000
An affiliated company is established in Jakarta, Indonesia.
2001
The total number of enrollments in the world exceeds 3 million.
2003
The total number of overseas subject enrollments exceeds 2 million.
2004
The Kumon EFL Program (English as a Foreign Language) is launched in Brazil.
The Kumon EFL Program is currently provided in twelve countries and regions around the world.
The Kumon Spanish Program (for native Spanish speakers) is launched in five countries in South America.
The Kumon Spanish Program is currently provided in seven countries around the world.
An affiliated company is established in New Delhi, India.
  • Up to this point, Kumon’s overseas development had proceeded by receiving offers from local parties. In this case, however, Kumon established an affiliated company in India in order to provide learning opportunities to as many children as possible. In India we continue to seek out the optimum manner of providing the Kumon Method.
An affiliated company is established in Bogotá, Colombia.
2005
The Kumon CFL Program (Chinese as a Foreign Language) is launched in Korea.
An affiliated company is established in Guangzhou, China.
2006
An affiliated company is established in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
The total number of enrollments in the world exceeds 4 million.
2007
An affiliated company is established in Doha, Qatar.
2008
The Kumon Thai Program (for native Thai speakers) is launched in Thailand.

2010

2011
An affiliated company is established in Beijing, China.

(As of December 2016)

Kumon offers learning opportunities in 49 countries
and regions around the world.

Kumon delivers the joy of learning to
everyone, from children to senior citizens.

ABOUT
KUMON

Yesterday, today, and tomorrow
we at Kumon always have, and
always will, place the utmost
importance on continuing to learn.

President
Kumon Institute of
Education Co., Ltd.

Instructors and staff continuously learn from students.

Words of the founder of
Kumon that we value.

Through the Kumon Method we aim to foster sound, capable individuals who can succeed in achieving their goals in life.

Click here for a detailed explanation of the secret behind the Kumon Method.

Click here to read about the essential role of the Instructor for the Kumon Method.

One father’s love for his son gave birth to the Kumon Method of learning.

Kumon has a dream, a dream of world peace brought about by education.

Timeless and borderless,
Kumon does its all for each and every individual.

It began with children in Japan and now extends to students all around
the world.

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