How much does Mathnasium cost?
$250 – $400 average cost per month
$395 – $1,000+ summer program cost (8 to unlimited sessions)
Mathnasium costs $250 to $400 per month or $25 to $75 per session, depending on the location and whether you book a 3, 6, or 12-month plan. Mathnasium summer programs cost $395 for eight sessions or $1,000+ for unlimited sessions. Some Mathnasium locations charge $100 to $150 for evaluation and enrollment fees.
Most locations offer both online and in-person tutoring sessions.
|Evaluation and enrollment fees||$100 – $150|
|Cost per session||$25 – $75|
|Cost per month||$250 – $400|
|Summer programs (8 sessions to unlimited)||$395 – $1,000|
Background on Mathnasium
Larry Martinek graduated college in 1974 and began teaching in schools in the Los Angeles area. To his horror, he realized that all he was doing was repair work with the students. As a teacher, he found it frustrating that he was working with kids who were well below grade level by the time they got to high school. In his role, his efforts were largely centered around getting students up to the grade level they should be at instead of taking them further than that grade level.
After the birth of his son Nic in 1980, Larry looked for ways to discuss math ideas with Nic that were beyond his years. Larry decided to change the language around teaching math, and his vision became the mission statement for Mathnasium: “Teach children math in a way that makes sense to them.”
Tragically, in May of 1999, Nic passed away after falling asleep at the wheel while driving home. As a living memorial to their son, Larry and his wife wanted to take all the creative ways Larry had conveyed math topics to Nic to a broader audience. Three years later, in 2002, education industry leaders Peter Markovitz and David Ullendorff made Larry and his curriculum the driving force of the Mathnasium Method.
Los Angeles schools began teaching directly from his material instead of their textbooks, and after seeing tremendous success in test scores, his method became an entire curriculum spanning pre-K to twelfth grade.
Why do math tutoring?
The reasons why parents elect to seek out a math tutor for their children can vary widely. The most common thread in most parents’ hearts and minds is to either see improved grades for their kids who are not doing so well, or beyond average grades for those who are.
The reasons for the low grades are varied and often include one or more of the following conditions:
Lack of understanding
Even with every possible factor in the students’ favor, they could still have issues with their learning style being different to the one-size-fits-all approach in most school systems, or their brains just may not be suited to getting math concepts outside a system in the way Mathnasium Method can.
In reality, not every student will excel in math. Some will not need it once they leave high school, and they will choose vocations that don’t require technical excellence in math on a daily basis. These students tune out what they feel is not mission critical in the pursuit of the dream.
School politics, the educational budget, the geographic location, the school principal, and parental involvement are some of the factors which influence the math curriculum in a school. Each and every school district having a different mix of these factors, either at a city level or statewide, will determine the quality of the curriculum offered.
Class to teacher ratio
Local and city budgetary constraints are at the root of the worsening child to teacher ratios over the last fifteen to twenty years. With schools on land of a limited size, or lacking the funds to build extra classrooms, this trend is likely to continue beyond where we are today.
Some would argue it’s already in breach of a number that is fair to all students. If we take the 80/20 rule and assume that 80 percent of students are not doing the best in any topic, then that 80 percent is competing for a portion of the teacher’s time and attention.
In a 2015 report from the National Center for Education Statistics, classroom sizes for elementary school classes ranged in size from 16.6 in Vermont to 27.4 in Utah, which yields a national average of 21.1. For high school classroom sizes in the US, the numbers ranged in size from 18.7 in Alaska to 34.5 in Nevada, which yields a national average of 26.8. Alaska, North Dakota, Wyoming, Vermont, and Maine were the only states with fewer than 20 students per class, and the remaining states had approx. 22. These numbers all shift over time.
In a similar report based on the rest of the world, the class size goes from 17.3 in Belgium to 35.5 in Singapore, yielding an average of 24.1 per teacher. While classroom size is only one contributing factor that potentially inhibits students’ chances of excelling in their studies, it is important to be aware of this factor.
For many kids today, their parents grew up in an era where only one parent worked outside the home. With many families either making a career choice to have the mother return to work after the birth of a child, or current economic pressures dictating the need for two incomes, it is often true that without that extra layer of support for homework, etc., that many kids have to work harder to get through school with good grades.
Not all parents are math geniuses, and they may not have done well in math themselves. As a result, when kids come home with math homework, parents can find it difficult to be of much assistance to the child.
We all appreciate teachers in what is considered to be a fairly thankless profession. They turn up every day to teach the nation’s next generation—our kids. As with any profession, there will be those who are gifted and love what they do, and the majority of their kids will excel in their studies.
There are also those who are in the wrong job, are not great communicators, have little patience, or are simply jaded. Sadly, not every school can only have teachers from the first group.
Child lacks confidence or self-esteem
Maybe your kid had a bad teacher, or any number of factors that resulted in a few failed exams, and it has taken a hit on your child’s self-confidence. Now he or she just sits in class without asking questions out of fear the question is too simple.
Child lacks motivation
Closely tied to lacking confidence or self-esteem, this can also be because of mean kids at school or bullies. In cases like this, children often have higher priorities on their minds—like staying safe or away from certain kids rather than excelling in their studies.
Change of schools
Often, as is common here in the US, families can find themselves moving house to pursue better career opportunities in a different city or state. The impact to the children can go either way—they will either go from a school where they are surrounded by the wrong crowd to one where there are very few kids to influence them negatively, or the reverse.
In conjunction with that, kids could go from a school where they had great teachers, including ones who really made efforts with them, to a school with a high percentage of burned-out teachers.
This is a biggie. At a certain point, we find our young ones morphing into teens. They are grasping for the right path as they sit at the intersection of independence and become their own person, with us slowly letting go. Right in that period of transition is the constant shout down the hall, “Did you do your homework yet?”
With any number of combined factors that could hold them back, and with all the possible distractions keeping them from opening the books, if they don’t put in the work, it’s likely they will have to catch up with the assistance of a tutor at some point.
Why the Mathnasium Method?
Mathnasium is different from many other tutoring options available because they specialize in math. Using proprietary curriculum, materials, and a custom lesson plan designed from the results of ongoing assessments; and led by the instructor whose focus is to ensure the student masters the material; students will see improved grades, have a better understanding and confidence in math, and have a better retention of math concepts and formulas.
Mathnasium is based on the core belief that every child can succeed at math when taught in a way that makes sense; and when children understand the subject, they will excel beyond the grade averages of most students in public or private school settings.
The approach creates excitement in students about math, as they finally understand it and become passionate about it.
“A strong understanding of the building blocks of math is the best way to help a student feel excited about learning while also setting them up for broad future success.” says Kathryn Kistler, the Mathnasium center director at the Westlake location in Austin. Texas.
According to Oak Park, IL, Mathnasium director, Jana Frank, with its focus on number sense, Mathnasium has provided her the perfect forum through which she can offer best practices in mathematical instruction and learning.
The method begins with unique initial assessments to accurately discover where students are at individually, and a custom plan is created to get them to where they want to or need to be. The learning plan is designed to master the concepts as identified by taking their current level into consideration and beginning there.
The cycle begins with an assessment, a custom plan, teaching for understanding, and then they complete the circle again. The students and their families will see assessment scores increase, and as their progress grows, their confidence follows.
Children’s confidence about math is critical, and when they see that they can do the work, they gain that confidence. This will put an end to the struggle, both in school and at home, when it’s time for homework, because the intimidation and frustration will be gone.
The Mathnasium Method teachers are referred to as “caring people who teach.” Because there is no assigned homework, the specially trained instructors are with students when the learning takes place, in an encouraging, caring environment.
John Van Horn of Mathnasium in Plainfield, IL, says “We enjoy helping students understand math. We love watching a student catch a concept and having "the light come on."
After researching the Mathnasium Method, Leslie Chiu, the Mathnasium Center Director In Astoria Queens, NY, instantly knew this is how all children would come understand math and wanted to spread the word, so she started her own Mathnasium center. She says the method goes beyond teaching formulaic structure and testing by helping Mathnasium students master number facts, build computational skills, improve number sense, go beyond understanding to passion, and develop a love for math.
Pasadena Mathnasium’s asst. center director, Andrew Lukman, thought math was just another subject that he was good at throughout his childhood, but after taking his first calculus class, his eyes opened to how "cool" math can be.
EyeCues Educational Systems has been conducting research on the Mathnasium Method since 2004. The results of this research is available on the Mathnasium website, and its findings, which show improvement in student performance on standards-based tests in 20 sessions or fewer, are grouped into three areas:
Understanding – 82% of parents report an improvement in their child’s math skills and understanding.
Attitude – 85% of parents report improved attitude toward math after attending Mathnasium.
School progress – 88% of students saw improvement in their school grades.
Why not offer online classes?
Unless measures have been taken to control the internet access in the house, the student may have access to a myriad of distractions similar to those in an unsupervised classroom. Additionally, the Mathnasium classroom setting typically has between one to five students per instructor, which gives students the focus to hear other students’ questions and the instructor’s answers, thus making the Mathnasium setting the ideal solution.
Each student’s understanding and skills in math can grow beyond what the vast majority of traditional teaching methods accomplish in our schools today. For any students learning math, when the topic makes sense, they will see progress; and as that understanding grows, the student gets excited about the subject. Many will grow to love it, and some will even consider turning their love for it into a career.