Frequently Asked

Questions

What is Bright Minds ?

Bright Minds is a mathematics enrichment program for children aged 5 and up. The program consists of weekly classes and homework assignments. Students also have the option to participate in our Chess Club and Flex classes to get extra help outside of class time.

How is your program different from others?

Bright Minds is not a tutoring program. Teaching and learning takes place in a small group environment which has students engaging in collaborative and creative activities. We foster deep understanding by augmenting our curriculum with brainteasers, lateral thinking riddles, puzzles, questions from math competitions, and thinking games. The results are students who become creative thinkers and strong problem-solvers, and not just in mathematics.

What is 'Serious Fun'?

Serious fun is our way of getting kids to love math. Serious fun is when challenge meets ability, and learning happens because activities are engaging, interesting, and fun.

My child hates math. Why would bringing them to Bright Minds help?

When children hate math, it’s generally because they have not been challenged by it at the right level. This happens all too often in typical schools. If the work is too easy, it becomes tedious and boring. If the material is too hard, it is embarrassing and frustrating. At Bright Minds, we are dedicated to giving kids the right challenges and proper support, and we do it in a way that is engaging and fun.

How is Bright Minds different from the math my child learns in school?

Our innovative curriculum emphasizes mental arithmetic, deep mathematical understanding, and creative problem solving. We do not give kids grades or marks; we only assess to determine what your child’s needs are in order to provide appropriate support and challenges. We encourage students to explore mathematics as they learn it. Most of all, we have fun with mathematics – playing games, tackling challenging problems, and having deep and interesting discussions are a big part of what we do.

Who is Bright Minds for?

Bright Minds is for any student who is motivated, has a keen mind for learning, and is willing to practice daily to acquire a skill that will serve them for life. Ongoing daily deliberate practice—whether it is music, sports, or mathematics—is absolutely necessary to improve and master a skill.

Is my child too young or too old to join?

Since the Bright Minds program sorts students into groups by level of understanding rather than by age or grade, we encourage parents of children of any age to inquire about the program. We are currently working with students starting as young as age 3 and a half up to students at the high school level.

My child is behind grade level in math. Can they join the program?

We are sensitive to the needs of all students who come to us for help, and so, while we place students in groups based primarily on their ability, age and maturity level are also important factors. Many of our students have come to us after years of difficulty with math in school. So, we can almost always find an appropriate peer group for your child.

How do we get started?

If you are interested in joining Bright Minds, the first step is to book an assessment. To do so, simply call our Bright Minds team at 587-969-8600, or email susan@calgarybrightminds.com to let us know.

Does my child need to have an assessment before joining Bright Minds?

Yes. To get the best results, and to make sure they have some Serious Fun, it is very important for the challenges we present to your child to be exactly what they are ready for. For this reason, all students wishing to join the Bright Minds program must go through a placement assessment. The assessment allows us to determine the student’s current skills and level of understanding in mathematics. After the assessment, we will assign the student to a group that is most suitable for their level. Assessments are always free of charge.

What do we need to bring to the assessment?

We do no require you to bring anything to an assessment. We will provide all material and workbooks your child needs after your child has been assessed and placed in a class.

Do you offer trials or drop-ins?

We do not offer any free trial sessions, and there are no drop-ins available. Real benefits come from long-term engagement.

How big are your classes?

Our classes typically have between 5 and 9 students. Larger classes will always have instructors and assistants working in tandem to ensure each student gets the attention they need. We maintain a ratio of at least one instructor for every 8 students.

Our family has a tight schedule. Is there a class at the right level and at the right time for my child?

Whenever possible, we try our best to accommodate the schedules of the students and parents within each particular group. While students work best with others who are at their own level, it is not necessary that they be at exactly the same level to work well together. In fact, each of our classes accommodates a range of levels. Also, as the program expands, more classes become available. So, even if we can’t find a great fit for you right
away, an appropriate class will likely open up soon!

What does my child need to bring to class?

We do require students bring pencils, an eraser, a ruler, a protractor, and a graph paper notebook to class every week for in-class exercises and activities.

What happens if we miss a class? What if we miss a few classes?

When students miss a class, they are expected to catch up on all materials covered in the class they missed; as they would when they miss a class at school. However, we offer plenty of support to keep students on track. Parents are kept in contact with instructors through Edmodo, where weekly updates keep you aware of homework assignments and the topics discussed in class. You can even get clarifications and a bit of extra help directly from your instructor through Edmodo. Flex classes are also available and can be attended as often as you wish. Flex classes are probably the best way to keep up with homework, whether you’ve missed classes or not!

What if my child has questions about Bright Minds assignments during the week?

All students registered in the Bright Minds program may attend any or all of the Flex classes we offer. Parents are also welcome to contact their child’s instructors via Edmodo at any time to seek clarification or ask questions.

Who are your teachers and what are their credentials?

Our instructors are experts in mathematics. They typically hold university degrees in mathematics or science and are passionate about teaching mathematics. They are deeply knowledgeable and committed to the intellectual growth of their students.

Do your students participate in math competitions and contests?

We prepare students for competitions as we believe it is a great way to learn mathematics and to test your abilities. Competition preparation is one of the best ways to become good problem solver. All students who are interested in joining may register to compete, and will have access to seasonal competition preparation sessions.

What does tuition include?

Tuition for the Bright Minds program includes everything Bright Minds has to offer: weekly classes, Flex classes, direct instructor contact, Chess Club, seasonal math competition prep sessions, and all assigned materials. Outside of the weekly classes, all other activities are completely optional and students can take advantage of them as often as they like.

What kind of results have you seen in students who join Bright Minds?

We have seen amazing results for all of our students who are committed to the program. With weekly lessons and 10-30 minutes per day of assigned homework, students usually progress through material quickly and deepen their understanding immensely. The students feel confident in their mathematical abilities, and enjoy working through and solving challenging problems. Usually, students start telling us how easy “school math” has become after just a few months in Bright Minds.

Is Bright Minds the same as The Renert Centre?

Bright Minds is one of the many programs offered by The Renert Centre. Our other services include 1-on-1 tutoring at all levels, tutoring centres for high school students, high school final exam review courses, grade 12
diploma review courses, and admission test preparation for law school and MBA programs. For more information, please visit www.renertonline.com.