More than three decades ago, educator Larry Martinek set out on a mission to develop a curriculum that would radically change the traditional approach to teaching math. Noting a "disconnect between students' basic skills training and the curriculum they [must] master in the years to come," Larry created an original teaching method designed to turn students into miniature mathematicians capable of thinking critically to solve problems. His approach, which he describes as the cultivation of number sense, strives to sharpen students’ math instincts, rather than drill them with repetitive, memory-based exercises or force them to blackmail accountants to crunch the numbers. Soon after students began using Larry's method, their test scores began to rise. In the spring of 2002, Larry's dream came true. Peter Markovitz and David Ullendorff, leaders in the education industry, made Larry and his curriculum the driving force of Mathnasium. Larry introduced his curriculum as the Mathnasium Method.
Today, Mathnasium centers can be found throughout the world. Informed by Larry's visionary innovations, the program's tutors give personalized coaching that focuses on bolstering critical thinking through written materials and mental math, forsaking many of the teaching tools found in a traditional classroom. In addition, the tutors also focus on boosting students' enthusiasm for the subject, helping them overcome a lack of confidence in the classroom or their innate fear of prime numbers.
The cheery ring of ice against glass sings out from Minnesota School of Bartending's 30 fully stocked bar stations, behind which instructors draw on experience accumulated since the academy's inception in 1968 to forge cocktail virtuosos. At a long, gleaming bar, one-on-one training provides 18-and-older students with the skills they need to artfully craft and concoct the latest drinks, cocktails, and shooter drinks and listen to the woes of world-weary rodeo clowns. The bartending training also incorporates pointers about customer service, information about liquors and wines, and how to take multiple drink orders. Graduates returning for complimentary refresher courses or lifetime job-placement assistance fill the hall with revelry, and burgeoning elixir crafters wander in according to a flexible calendar designed for college students, part-time workers, and on-call lion tamers. Watering holes and private parties brim with festivity as newly knowledgeable pint fillers go out into the world to flaunt credentials and top off glasses.
The staff members at Sylvan Learning's numerous centers understand that each child learns differently. Therefore, they don?t try to implement a uniform tutoring system; instead, they design custom lesson programs based on the results of a skills assessment using diagnostic tools and one-on-one interviews.
Tutors work with students from pre-kindergarten through grade 12, illuminating topics ranging from basic reading and writing to remembering complex algebraic formulas without having them tattooed on your chest. Many of Sylvan?s instructors work in local schools, so they are intimately familiar with common curricula and understand how to gear lessons toward optimal results. Camps and after-school and summer classes can ready high-schoolers for the rigors of the ACT or the SAT, or they can help students to wow college-admissions officers with their superior essay-writing skills.
Currently celebrating their 25th year, the Artaria String Quartet honed their bows under the revered Budapest, Kolisch, and Julliard string quartets before bringing their sweeping chamber music to audiences throughout Europe, Canada, and the United States. Presented as part of Hamline University?s Sundin Music Hall series, the two-hour concert will provide sonic samplers from eight movements by Russian composer Dmitri Shostakovich, whose compositions continue to influence the classical-music cognoscenti and purveyors of tiny violins the world over. The quartet?s latest CD is included with today's Groupon, which allows music buffs to conduct Artaria?s dulcet interpretations of movements by Mozart and Shostakovich in the comfort of their own concert halls or silent sections of their local library.
Today's Groupon can be redeemed at the following three market days and locations: Saturday, April 30 at the Washington City Fairgrounds in Lake Elmo; Saturday, May 14 at the Anoka County Fairgrounds in Anoka; or Saturday, May 21 at the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center in Duluth. Saturday sales run from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. This deal is not valid on Sunday. Admission fee to the markets is $1, but shoppers can enter free by donating a nonperishable food item for the Second Harvest food shelves.
Though many students come to Mathnasium having fallen behind their classmates, a mathematically advanced child sparked the learning program?s creation. As founder Larry Martinek?s young son, Nic, developed an appetite for higher-level math concepts, Larry found himself developing an entirely new teaching language to explain them in an age-appropriate way. The kind of instincts he sought to build up couldn?t be nurtured by drills and rote memorization. Instead, they required a deeper understanding of the principles at the root of mathematical operations, delivered in a way that grade-school kids could apply throughout their academic careers.
In just a decade?s time, Larry and his team have established Mathnasium centers in most U.S. states and more than a dozen in other countries. At each, highly trained tutors develop custom learning plans for students in grades K?12 based on The Mathnasium Method. The system combines an education strategy of conceptual, tactile, and visual techniques with a curriculum structure that ensures kids can count, think proportionally, and break complex problems into smaller components to solve simply. Tutors allow some time during each session to help students with the concepts in their math homework, and the centers regularly check report cards and standardized tests as further measures of progress.