Kumon Completers Share How A Supplemental Education Program Helped Them Succeed - Student Resources

Kumon Completers Share How A Supplemental Education Program Helped Them Succeed

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Completing the Kumon Program does more than give students an academic advantage. It equips students with soft skills like perseverance and determination and demonstrates how a supplemental education program can help your child succeed. Completers say finishing the Kumon Program left them with the confidence to tackle anything.  

Just ask Instructor Lipi Singh of the Kumon Center of Coppell-East in Texas. A former Kumon Student, Singh completed Kumon math at age 17.  

“It gave me a great sense of achievement. It helped my math skills, of course, but it also gave me a boost in confidence,” Singh says. “I tell parents all the time that Kumon helps build soft skills like focus and determination.”  

Kumon’s individualized instruction allows students to work at their own pace, mastering each individual skill using worksheets that help students practice the concept before moving to the next one. Completing the Kumon Program is an impressive feat, boosting a child’s confidence and resulting in improved academic performance as well as life skills development. 

Although she doesn’t advertise her completer status, Singh says she draws on her personal experience to motivate her students who are approaching the finish line. However, she believes that to stick with Kumon long enough to complete the program, students have to want to do it for themselves. “I think the student has to be driven. A lot of parents think they can push the kid, but then the student will get stressed out or begin to hate it. They need to have an internal drive.” 

That’s certainly the case with two completers we caught up with this summer. Both recent high school graduates, they credit the intrinsic motivation that carried them through Kumon and the confidence it instilled in them with their success so far.  

Kiran Shay  

Kiran Shay is fascinated by engineering and medicine – and how the two will converge in the future.  

Kiran started Kumon at age 4 and completed English at age 10 and math at age 11. “I was very competitive with one of my buddies from school. He also did Kumon and we pushed each other. He finished math at 11, too.”  

That friendly rivalry continues to this day. When Kiran graduated as valedictorian of his class in the spring, his friend was salutatorian.  

Kiran, 18, of Florida will attend Johns Hopkins University to study electrical engineering with a pre-med track. “Medicine is one of my passions and that’s what I’m thinking of doing after college. But 20 to 30 years in the future, the connections between technology and medicine will be so advanced. By then, surgeons may not be doing actual surgery but working on machines that do the surgery.”  

Kiran’s interest in medicine and technology goes way back. When he was 11, he and some of his friends got together to design and develop a prosthetic hand for another boy who lost his hand at an early age. They used a 3D printer to produce it.  

Because Kiran completed the Kumon Program so young, it was years before he encountered some of the concepts in high school. “For me, the biggest takeaways from Kumon were more than academics. When I got to calculus in high school, I was thinking, ‘I’ve seen this before.’ And I used deductive reasoning to pick up some new things quicker, too. But Kumon also teaches life skills like time management, and it instilled the confidence that I could do a lot more than I thought I could.”  

Christine Sinn 

Christine Sinn gets excited about using what she’s learned to build communities and improve people’s lives.  

Christine started in Kumon at 3 years old and didn’t stop until she completed the program, finishing English at age 10 and math at 12.  

She says Kumon became a habit that she never considered quitting. “It was just a normal part of my day. But I realized the everyday work led to faster progress in and out of the classroom,” she says.  

“At some point, I realized how much I didn’t know and how much I wanted to learn. Sometimes, it could get a little draining. Like you finish level I and realize, ‘Oh! There’s a level J!’” she says, laughing. “But I would look ahead and think how exciting it was to see all that I could learn next.”  

Now 18, Christine graduated from high school in northern Virginia and will attend the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to study computer science, economics and finance. She is interested in exploring entrepreneurial ventures and social startups, as well as how to finance and sustain them. 

Christine did not wait to learn about entrepreneurship in college. She is founder and CEO of ScolioBend, a service-oriented organization by and for scoliosis patients, and she designed, programmed and wrote the free ScolioBend app. She manages a national team of volunteers and leads a team that conducts research surveys on treatments and an outreach team that partners with health professionals and schools to raise awareness of scoliosis.   

Christine says completing the Kumon Program taught her self-discipline and perseverance. “It felt like a huge accomplishment because it was the culmination of many years of work. I learned the most rewarding things don’t come easy or fast. You can’t cram Kumon. In hindsight, I appreciate learning to take small steps toward learning something.”