Rebecca Zook - Math Tutoring Online

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Posts Tagged as "interview"

Making Math Magical is in the newspaper!

Thursday, January 25th, 2018

Hey beautiful readers!

I’m so excited…. I was interviewed about the process of making math magical for an article for the Rye Record newspaper by the fabulous Maureen Mancini Amaturo!

Read on for the full article 🙂

Math + Rebecca Zook = Magic

By Maureen Mancini Amaturo

Rebecca Zook, musician and fairy godmother of math who works with kids all over the world, will be at The Rye Free Reading Room November 9, 2017 from 6:30-8:00 p.m. She’ll present, “Making Math Magical: How to End the Math Freakout and Raise a Math-Confident Daughter,” a program that is just as effective for boys. Her mission: to conquer math anxiety. Because of her unusual way of guiding all those who say, “I’m not a math person,” there are a lot more people out there adding to their potential.

“I work with girls and boys, but the majority of my students are girls. There is lots of research on girls and math. From my own experience, I find that the reason is not that our intellect is an obstacle. It’s emotion. There is a larger shift in our culture now of women coming more and more into positions of leadership and in fields not traditionally slated for them. There is greater awareness of where women are underrepresented and a lot of positive energy going into changing that.”

Rebecca is a musician, really, with a self-designed interdisciplinary degree in Music and the Humanities, and she performs around the globe. “I find that because I am a creative, artistic person, I understand what creative, artistic people need to feel comfortable with math. This helps me connect with kids having a hard time.”

When Rebecca heads out to tutor math-phobics, she arrives with her cello. Memories of struggling with math as a young girl motivated her to find a way to help others avoid that stress and discover the skills they they don’t have. “A big part of my work is hearing, ‘I wish I worked with you when I was growing up.’ I say I wish I had worked with myself!”

Her students have shown incredible growth. “Many think once you have a hard time with math it’s game over. You work hard, and it’s not clicking. You think something is wrong with you. Over time, you disengage and give up. I am amazed at how much transformation is possible.” Rebecca has perfected a process to subtract the anxiety and add confidence. “I work with students to eliminate the negative emotion — the nervous feeling, anxiety, fear­, and help them slow down.”

So, what’s the key to unlocking math phobia? “There are three fundamental pieces,” she says. “One: have a growth mindset about math which means to understand that math ability is something you can cultivate and grow with comfort, and it’s not something you either have or not. It’s such a toxic mindset to think that you’re either a math-science person or humanities-language person. I’m living proof you can be both.

“Two: Stay in the sweet spot where it’s not so hard you are overwhelmed and not so low you get bored. Break it down into pieces that are small enough for you to handle.

“Three: Take a mastery orientation approach with math. We have an understanding in our culture with athletics and art that you practice, and it’s enjoyable. With math, we think if we just do what we are told, that’s enough. Mostly, the curriculum doesn’t identify that, and kids give up and opt out. Practicing math in a way that is pleasurable and customized is crucial.”

Rebecca is the magician that dispels the fallacy that if you are working with a tutor, you’re bad at math. “If you want to bring your dreams and vision to the world, you have to support that desire. All winners have coaches, trainers, guides, mentors, and teachers. Support is not about dependency. It’s about facing new challenges and growing.”

Hear more about Rebecca’s unorthodox approach to developing a successful relationship with math at the Rye Free Reading Room, visit or contact her directly at or 617-888-0160.

Is your creative kid freaking out about math? Do you want them to truly master math and love it so their dreams can come true without experiencing math as an obstacle?

I’d love to connect and explore if my work would be a fit for your child!

Just click here to take the first step: click here

Posts Tagged as "interview"

It’s not just about math

Saturday, December 17th, 2011

I don’t normally put testimonials on my blog — they have their own beautiful lil’ zone over on the testimonials page — but I wanted to showcase one of the BEST things that happened to me this past week — doing a video interview with one of my favorite clients of all time, Miranda Lynch, and her mom, Sheri Lynch!

Before we talked, I really didn’t know what Miranda and her mom were going to say. I had no idea that Miranda is now taking *two* math classes (because she wants to), and I also hadn’t heard about most of her other amazing results (like consistently getting straight As in math since we worked together–way to go, Miranda!!).

But what got me even MORE excited was hearing Miranda talk about how our work together helped her feel more comfortable solving any kind of problem. Amen, sister! It is not just about math!

AND hearing Miranda, who is a filmmaker, talk about how she is totally confident about applying to her dream schools for film — because her math skills are so strong, she had no worries about her applications — GIVES ME GOOSEBUMPS!

An amazing healer who I am privileged to work with once told me that what she really does is remove obstacles. Many of my students come to me because they are experiencing obstacles to their learning… or math itself feels like an obstacle in their life. What we do together is remove the obstacle, lovingly, slowly, patiently, step-by-step… and in the process, my students learn to remove obstacles on their own.

This is something I think about, but don’t usually talk about with my students. It was amazing to hear one of my students express this to me herself.

Thank you, Miranda and Sheri, for taking the time to share your experience with the world!

*In other news, my website has a new tips page, which showcases some of my best tips all in one handy place.

Related posts:
Encouraging independent problem solving–subliminally?
Self-taught hero: Pearl Fryar
On being yourself while doing math

Posts Tagged as "interview"

Guest Post Alert: Interview up today on Maths Insider

Tuesday, February 1st, 2011

I’m quite honored to be interviewed today over on the Maths Insider blog!

Maths Insider is the brainchild of my intrepid colleague Caroline Mukisa, whose blog fills a crucial need for parents looking for advice on how to help their kids with their math homework. (Caroline is British, thus “maths” instead of “math”).

Caroline asked me great questions about my mentors, whether I’ve always loved math, and my top three pieces of advice for parents looking to support their kids’ math learning.

So click on over and check it out!


Related posts:
Tips for how to help your kid with their math homework
Guest Post Alert: Q & A with Danica McKellar about Hot X: Algebra Exposed!
Five fun ways to help your kids learn math this summer