Mathnasium 141 W Northwest Hwy, Palatine IL 60067 (847) 496-4373   palatine@mathnasium.com

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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:

Center Director/OwnerSalma Taher, Center Director/Owner

Salma holds a Bachelor's Degree in English Literature and Psychology and has worked in the corporate world as a creative and technical writer, editor and online marketing specialist. Above all she enjoys her role as a mother, teacher and mentor to her three daughters. Salma strongly believes that the way forward for all children and adults alike lies in education. She knows from her own personal experience that the joy of learning is in the understanding, and the value of knowledge is in its application. Since she believes that imparting knowledge should involve flexibility, creativity and passion, it was only natural that she found Mathnasium the obvious choice. Her quest is to make kids overcome the "math dread" she encountered when teaching her friends/classmates, and the lack of truly engaging math resources available for kids even today. Salma is excited to share the same "aha" moments she experienced while getting trained in the Mathnasium method with her students. She feels it's just the thing kids will love because it relates to their innate curiosity, keeps them engaged, and addresses not just the rules but the reasons. Salma's pleasures include traveling, volunteering her time and family moments. With a passion for lifelong learning, she's excited about embarking on this new journey of her life in helping more kids succeed.


Center Director/OwnerBrad Haber, Center Director/Owner

Brad Haber holds a Bachelor's degree in Information Technology from Roosevelt University and has been an embedded software programmer for the past 14 years. An engineer by profession, he realizes the importance of math in the real world. After years of tutoring kids at home, he discovered that teaching Math for him is a passion and seeing kids succeed is worth any number of hours and weekends. With unlimited patience, a love for numbers and a knack for teaching creatively, Brad has shown kids by example that no math problems or for that matter, life problems are too hard to overcome. An aviation enthusiast who loves to fly, Brad enjoys the exhilaration of taking to the skies. He gets the same high when he sees kids' faces light up when they "get it." His first students were, of course, his own children and their friends. After experiencing many "wow" moments during the training, Brad is really excited to bring Mathnasium to his community because he truly believes in its methodology and the way it explains concepts. Making kids enjoy math is something he truly wants to achieve, not just for his personal satisfaction, but because he knows it will open many doors for them. Brad is an avid reader, world traveler and outdoors enthusiast. He loves to spend time with his family, travel and writes programs for the iPhone as a hobby.

 

 

 Danny Ostrowski, Instructor

Hi, I'm Danny Ostrowski, working with Mathnasium of Palatine since 2016. I love working with kids because they are always full of new ideas and energy, and if that is focused into one subject, such as math, you can really see them grow wiser and develope new ways of thinking.

Math is interesting to me because even if we dont use all the math we have learned, math is still involved in all of our lives every day. Everything can be broken down into mathematics. At Mathnasium, we have learned, practiced, and continue discovering new and unique techniques to tackle math problems as well as teach them to our students so that they are easier to understand and relate to past topics they have learned.

There have been many times that I've heard something alone the lines of "Oh! I get it now!" or "That makes way more sense!" When I get this feedback from a student, it makes me enjoy what I do even more, knowing that I am making an impact on their life.

When the test scores come in and they have increased from when they started at mathnasium, it is just the icing on top.

On a free day, you would find me programming or playing video games, or spending time with friends and family.

 

 

Nergal Lazar, Instructor

Nergal lives in Rolling Meadows IL. He graduated from Roosevelt University with a BA in Mathematics and a minor in Education. He is a certified High School teacher, currently also working at Holy Family as a math teacher for middle school. Nergal is dedicated to helping students gain confidence in their mathematical skills and improve their grades. In his free time, Nergal likes to play piano, read, and spend time with family and friends. Nergal is dedicated to students' success and utilizes his free time finetuning his skills from Singapore math, Vedic concepts to Calculus.

 

 

Ali Ilyas Khan

 

Hi I'm Ali and have been working at Mathnasium since 2016. I like working with kids because I enjoy seeing them have these "aha" moments where they finally understand something they've been struggling with. I find math interesting because there's always a right and wrong answer, but multiple ways to get there.
 
Seeing students happy with themselves and confident in their math skills is a big motivator for me, plus I enjoy making them laugh.
 
I think my best moment at Mathnasium has been working with a student on a subject they found extremely confusing, and then having them come back the next week telling me they aced their test.
 
On a free day, you'd probably find me playing videogames, working on my car, or watching a movie. Fun fact: I like building computers.

 

Danail Damianov, Instructor

Danail is a graduate from Prospect High School and is currently graduating from De Paul University. He is majoring in Mathematics and Economics. He hopes to transfer to one of the top private schools in both of his respective majors. Danail, popularly known as Dani, is dedicated to helping students gain confidence and improve on their problem solving and math skills and loves seeing kids have a eureka moment when everything finally clicks.  In his free time he enjoys any kind of competitive activities (sports or games), reading, watching movies, meeting new people and striving to improve himself.

 

John Hynek, Instructor

John is a retired math Professor with a Masters in Math. He has taught all levels of math at Harper College and works part-time with us. When he is not teaching, he is preparing taxes for clients and corporates.

 

 

Tom Trapps, Instructor

Hi I'm   Tom Traps working at Mathnasium of Palatine since March 2018
 
Why you like working with kids?
I enjoy being in a position that could positively influence them in their lives.
 
What about math interests you?
Math is interesting to me because it is like a puzzle that you must solve and feels when rewarding when you do.
 
What about working at Mathnasium motivates you?
I am motivated by helping our students overcome educational obstacles and trying to make them see that math isn't all that bad or scary.
 
Your best moment at Mathnasium when working with a student
My best moment is really a combination of all the moments having led students struggling with a topic to that "eureka" moment and watching them go from not knowing how to tackle a problem to being a downright expert at it.
 
On a free day you'd find me doing this.......
Playing basketball or making music with some friends.
 
Interesting Fact About me: 
I can speak 3 languages pretty fluently.
 

Shahraiz Khawari, Instructor

Hi I am Shahraiz Khawari working at Mathnasium of Palatine since Jan of 2017

I enjoy working with kids because it is one of the most satisfying jobs out there. To be able to help kids deal with Math, thus making them more confident in school spiritually upraises me. 
Math in general was a subject that I have always done well in and due to that reason I enjoy Math. 
 
Working at Mathnasium has allowed me to become friends with kids of all ages. The friendly environment along side with the cheerful kids allows me to remain positive even in stressful times. 
 
There have been several instances in the past where a student showed me his/her grades proudly, when before coming to Mathnasium they really struggled in Math. These moments to me are significant because it becomes obvious that we (the tutors) actually helped the students in some ways or another. 
 
On a free day you would find me hanging out with friends, reading, going to the gym, watching movies, or doing homework.
 
A couple of interesting facts about me: I was a student at Mathnasium before coming to work there, I like to grow vegetables, and I also enjoy reading/writing.