Kaitlin O’Neill opened the second Mathnasium in Queens at 108-14 72nd St. in Forest Hills. It provides area students a place to catch up on their studies and strengthen their math skills.
Going into their second week in the neighborhood, O’Neill said she has already assessed 16 students and currently has around 12 in the program. She said the center can hold around 25 kids at one time, and hopes to enroll over 100 students within the next calendar year.
“Students first come in here to take the assessment so we can find out where they’re at,” O’Neill said. “Some kids come in here and they’re above grade level; they love math so much they just want extra work. And some kids will come in here well below grade level and they need some help.”
There is a monthly membership fee to enroll at Mathnasium, and like a gym, students can come as often as they want.
The program is offered to kids from pre-kindergarten through 12th grade, and provides a regimented curriculum based on their assessment and operates under the supervision of trained math instructors.
“Each learning plan is designed for the individual students,” O'Neill said. “If we see that they’re having trouble with fractions, we’ll give them a whole unit on fractions.”
She explained that some students need to touch or see the problem in front of them, so instructors might bring out cards or dice or some props.
“A lot of kids say they hate math, and that’s because they get frustrated with it, because they can only do so much of it in school and their teacher can only help them so much before they have to move forward,” O’Neill said. “We’re here to show them that math can be fun.”