Mathnasium 17581 Glasgow Ave, Lakeville MN 55044 (763) 269-6969   Member Service: (612) 454-0582

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We are OPEN for both In-Center and Online instruction. Call today 763-269-6969!

Our Team

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:


Owner...........Master Certified Instructor

Bobby Tarnowski, Owner

 It thrills me to see a young person's face light up when it finally hits them how math works and is useful in the things they're passionate about. I believe that a solid understanding of mathematics is foundational in our ability to make good life choices, equipping us to live lives with greater independence and accomplishment of our goals. I graduated from St. John's University with a B.A. in Mathematics and continued with a Master's Program in Manufacturing Systems Engineering at the University of St. Thomas. Math has been indispensible throughout my career in engineering and management, and is also quite useful in my business and family life.

Lead Instructor

Steve Johnson, Lead Instructor

 Steve Graduated from St. Olaf College with a degree in mathematics. He taught high school math for 11 years in Minnesota and Wisconsin schools. During that time he was introduced to his first desktop plug-in calculator, resulting in him throwing out his slide rule. Steve then worked for 25 years with Sperry, a high tech company that later changed to Lockheed Martin through company mergers, as a software engineer and later as a project manager. There he learned to count in different number bases including octal and hexadecimal. Steve loves working with kids and nurtures that love by substitute teaching, asking his 3 grandchildren mental math questions, and playing in a church youth band. He is excited to be a member of the Mathnasium staff and to apply innovative methods to help students learn math. 

Tom Joseph, Instructor

 Tom is a retired educator after serving 43 years as an elementary/middle school teacher and principal.  Tom received his BA and MA from the University of Wisconsin.  Since his retirement, Tom has tutored math to middle school and high school students at several inner-city schools.  Strongly embracing the Mathnasium Method, Tom loves the way the program greatly increases the confindence level of students and supercharges their ability to think "mathsensically."  Tom enjoys his seven grandchildren, reading, working out, kayaking and traveling.  


Jeanne Olson, Instructor

 Jeanne is a State of Minnesota licensed middle school teacher for Mathematics.  She attended Gustavus Adolphus and the University of Minnesota earning a BS from the College of Education.   She has shown her versatility by working in a variety of settings:  public and private, inner city and suburban, regular and substitute teacher.  She currently is a substitute teacher and very excited to be part of the Mathnasium experience.  Jeanne loves to help students learn.  Once you meet Jeanne her enthusiasm for math will catch on with you too!!!

Terri Joseph, Instructor

 Terri recently retired after teaching middle school math for 31 years.  She received a BS in math from the University of Wisconsin Green Bay and an MA from the University of St Thomas.  She is grateful to be able to continue to work with young people in the Mathnasium setting.  She enjoys hanging out with her seven grandchildren, reading and traveling.



Peggy Pechacek, Instructor

Peggy earned a BS in mathematics and computer science from Briar Cliff College in Sioux City, IA and a MA in Education from Hamline University in St. Paul.  Her career began by teaching high school mathematics for two years then spending nine years as a systems engineer applying her math and computer skills in support of General Motors computer systems.  Peggy put her career on hold for several years to be at home with her four children, then returned to the education field. She has 19 years of classroom experience which include middle school mathematics and K-8 technology. Peggy enjoys working with students of all ages and helping them build confidence in their math abilities.


Lara Silverthorn, Instructor

Hi! My name is Lara! I've been teaching at Mathnasium for about 8 months, and I've also assisted the teachers at my school with teaching math and other subjects. I've gone to a Pre-K through 12th grade school, and constantly am talking to and spending time with the younger kids. I've also worked at a daycare for about 4 years. I'm a PSEO student and have taken College Algebra, Geometry, and am currently taking Pre-calculus. I don't exactly know what I want to do in the future, but I've thought about a variety of careers such as becoming a mathematician, biochemist or biochemical engineer, an FBI agent, a bodyguard, or a forensic pathologist. In my free time, I love playing piano (also in a band) and spending time with friends and family. I've played piano for more than 11 years, and have won a state-wide competition three times in which I played at the Minnesota Convention Center. I love working at Mathnasium because I get to interact with the kids and know them better, along with helping them to understand math



  Ben Ellis, Instructor

Ben is currently a senior at Rosemount High School, where he is taking a Calculus 4 course in linear algebra and differential equations. He also participates in the band program and math team as well as serving on the Independent School District 196 Gifted & Talented Advisory Council. Before starting at Mathnasium, he tutored in various capacities for families, schools, churches, and volunteer organizations. He enjoys Mathnasium because he loves to get to know the students as he watches them grow and gradually overcome all of their obstacles in math. In the future, he plans to pursue chemical engineering. In his free time, Ben enjoys sudoku, crochet, and playing, composing, and arranging music.


  Ayla Steigerwald, Instructor

 Ayla Steigerwald is a freshman in high school, taking classes at the University

of Minnesota and St. Cloud State University. She was a student at Mathnasium
from 2nd grade through 7th grade, has tutored kids at multiple levels of math, and
is a part of the math team at Farmington High School. In her spare time, she enjoys
reading, solving math problems, and photography. Her goal when teaching math
is to have math understandable while teaching students to enjoy it.



   Natalie Schwartz, Instructor

My name is Natalie and I'm a senior at Apple Valley High School. I'm so happy to be working at Mathnasium because I love math and love kids. My favorite thing about math is how logical it is, how everything is like a puzzle, and that there is always a correct answer. Working with the students and seeing them really understand the math they're working on and seeing them begin to enjoy it is my favorite part of the job. 



  Cass Hoffmann, Instructor

 My name is Cass, and I am a senior at the School of Environmental Studies. I am currently taking a college level math course in linear algebra and differential equations, and have taken all high school classes through calculus and AP statistics. I like working at Mathnasium because I want students to have a positive relationship with math and feel confident in their skills. Other than math, I also enjoy painting, hiking, making jewelry, and practicing with my band. In the future I plan on attending UW River Falls and majoring in Biotechnology.