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Mathnasium of Arlington

Because math is cumulative, a misunderstanding at the elementary level can create built-in handicaps that compound with every new grade. “If you don’t know your multiplication tables, division becomes difficult, and then fractions get hard. The gap gets bigger and bigger,” says Neha Desai, owner of Mathnasium of Arlington. The program has enrolled more than 160 kids since it opened last year, generating praise from parents for its approach. If a high school student is failing algebra, for example, Mathnasium instructors will search for the root of the problem, which might go all the way back to fourth-grade fractions. If that’s the case, they will then teach fractions, not algebra. “We fill in the gaps,” says Desai, who holds a master’s degree in molecular genetics and worked on the Human Genome Project. She says she opened Mathnasium because “a lot of American kids don’t go into math or science—and we’ve got to fix that.”

–J.S.

4801 First St. North, Arlington, 703-351-6284, www.mathnasium.com/arlingtonva


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