Our specially trained math instructors will teach your child how to understand math in an individual setting; our unique approach enables us to explain concepts really well and lend a helping hand to every student. Our tutors foster a caring, encouraging environment that helps kids thrive and learn! Read below to learn more about our talented team:
Ken Tiu, Curriculum Mentor
Ken opened the first Mathnasium center in the state of New York in 2007. He has a background in business and science education. All through high school and college Ken traveled and competed in windsurfing events around the country. After college he worked in the action sports industry while obtaining a masters degree in education. Ken taught middle and high school physics for 9 years and ran a successful competitive robotics team. In 2007 he was named the Suffolk County Science Teacher of the year. Ken believes that a strong background in math is essential to be competitive in the global marketplace. If the US is to keep its competitive edge as a world innovator it must commit to improving math and science literacy among its population. Math is a challenging subject to teach to large groups of students since people think and work at different paces. Mathnasium allows students to work at their own pace in a low pressure environment with individualized help. Ken's wife Amy, also an educator, assists in running the center. She has taught children of all ages since 1993. In her spare time she volunteers for the Guide Dog Foundation as a puppy walker, fundraiser, and speaker. Ken and Amy welcome the opportunity to help the children in the Commack community develop the skills and confidence needed to succeed. Whether students are struggling, advanced, or anywhere in between Mathnasium will deliver results!!!
Jen Barkus, Lead Instructor/Assistant Center Director
Jen has had a passion for Mathematics from a young age. She always wanted to have a career that was centered around math. In 2007 she graduated with B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Farmingdale State College. She began working at Mathnasium of Lake Grove in August of 2008. While working at Mathnasium, she discovered that her true calling was teaching. She enrolled in the Math teaching program at Stony Brook University and is now NYS certified to teach 5-12 Math. She currently teaches Math at Comsewogue High School in Port Jefferson Station. Jen is well versed in the high school math curriculum and has, over the years, helped many students prepare for their Regents exams. Jen is very passionate about what she teaches and tries to help every student at Mathnasium see the beauty of Mathematics and gain more confidence in themselves.
Key Career Achievements:
Attaining a Masters in Arts of Teaching Mathematics from Stony Brook University in May of 2017
Fun Trivia About Jen:
In her off time, Jen loves cooking and crafting. She is also learning to crochet. She also loves listening to music and watching old movies and TV shows.
David Diaz, Instructor
David Diaz is currently a senior at Stony Brook University studying physics with a particular interest in quantum information research. He has conducted research in accelerator physics and quantum information at facilities across the country. Throughout his college career, he has also had the privilege to teach undergraduate students calculus as a teaching assistant at the University of Rochester and at Stony Brook University. Additionally, he has been able to further express his passion for teaching by working at Mathnasium for quite a few years now. He is currently searching for PhD programs in physics that will allow him to continue research, while also training to become a more effective instructor.
Key Career Achievements:
Member of the national physics honor society; presented research in Arizona for the American Physical Society; published a papers in the Student Journal of Physics, International Edition.
Fun Trivia About David:
He used to be a Latin dance instructor, quit playing Minecraft because it was too addictive, currently plays League of Legends, knows how to program, and enjoys bothering our Assistant Center Director, Jennifer Barkus.
Anthony Porras, Instructor
Anthony Porras majoring in Applied Math and Statistics as well as Economics from Stony Brook University. He has a passion for math ever since he was a little boy and continues to explore new areas in math both theoretically and applicability. Prior to Mathnasium, he had tutoring experience at Suffolk Community College as an EOP tutor and student associate in the math learning center. He was an intern researcher at Farmingdale State College and his research was on "Chemical Espionage" along with his colleagues.
Anthony and his colleagues won first place at the international SCUDEM IV competition against Hofstra, City of Tech and NYU. His hobbies are playing guitar, writing songs, swimming and spending time with his family. Anthony has a strong passion for music and he believes that math and music go hand in hand.
Michelle Ciccone, Instructor
Michelle is currently a junior at LIU Post studying mathematics. She is graduating a semester early and will pursue her Master of Education degree. She has always enjoyed math more than any other subject in school. Ever since her sophomore year of high school she has been tutoring kids in math. Michelle’s main goal is to share her love and passion for math with her students but also she hopes she can be a role model like her teachers were for her. To her, there is no job more fulfilling than being a high school math teacher.
Key career achievements
She was awarded the Joseph Panzeca Memorial Scholarship for having the highest GPA amongst math majors at LIU Post. She was the course tutor for a sociological statistics course at LIU Post.
Fun trivia about Michelle
She loves to watch basketball and baseball (her favorite teams are the Knicks and the Mets), her favorite class in high school was algebra 2 and in college it was differential equations, her major in college is mathematics but she is also minoring in sociology, and she can recite the dialogue to almost every episode of Spongebob.
Rayyan Nabi, Instructor
Rayyan has always loved math and has been an active participant of many math related extracurricular activities. He loves the feeling of thoroughly understanding a mathematical concept, and the more complex it is, the better the feeling! This was particularly present when he took physics in high school and applied the knowledge he has learned in math classes through the years into a science related field: an intersection of two of his favorite fields. Though he is not majoring in mathematics in college, Rayyan still stays involved with the field by helping friends with math homework, and teaching at Mathnasium. Rayyan hopes to pass on his knowledge and enthusiasm for math to as many students as possible.
Fun trivia about Rayyan
Rayyan is commonly found picking up new hobbies, which can range from learning how to play the guitar, to learning how to skateboard. Like nearly every other teenager, Rayyan also enjoys watching TV shows and being around friends.
Mark Stanclik, Instructor
Mark graduated from MIT in 2017 with a degree in mathematics. He has been a tutor since high school, and in college he graded for various advanced math classes and online programs. Mark’s passions for math stems from its applicability to a wide variety of fields and its predictive ability. When he’s not studying, Mark likes to play chess and trade cryptocurrencies. Mark is now working towards a degree in quantitative finance.
Eugene Arnold, Instructor
Eugene is a math education major at Queens College. I aspire to teach Calculus at the high school level and eventually become a professor in Probability or Statistics. Teaching is his passion and he loves working with children to make a brighter future.
Nick Hager, Instructor
Nick studies at the University at Buffalo majoring in mathematics. He attended Lindenhuurst Senior High School and enjoys being back on Long Island during breaks. He enjoys tutoring and helping students gain the confidence to succeed in math. In his free time he likes hiking and being in nature. and is an avid runner, currently training for a half-marathon.
He was the proud valedictorian of the Lindenhurst Senior High School class.
Fun Trivia about Nick:
He has perfected the art of jumping rope on a pogo stick.