What Are Math Circles, And How Do I Set One Up?

Math circles are vibrant, playful math groups that help girls fall in love with math through patterns and discovery, fun projects, hands-on explorations, and games. 

We believe girls connect with math the most when they are having fun and experiencing math in real-life contexts. Previous math circle girls have explored math with actual kittens (I’m a kitten foster mom), or by creating and selling chocolates from their own imaginary chocolate shop. (See our events page for more info.)

There are two ways to get involved in a math circle: by joining an existing circle in your area that is a match for your daughter’s age, or by starting your own. 

The first step in joining or creating a math circle is to complete an interest application online. I collect information about your child’s grade and your location, and add your name to the waiting list. 

I offer a limited number of math circles per semester to girls in grades 1-7 (no more than 2 grade levels per group). These meet for an hour and a half each week in parents’ homes in the south bay area (San Jose to Redwood City).

Math circles can be held after school or during school hours for homeschoolers. 

how to join an existing math circle

Sometimes, I’ll have an existing math circle that seems perfect for that child: same grade level, nearby location, a few extra spots available. 

When that happens, I consult first with the other parents and girls in the group to see if they are open to another group member. If so, I invite your child for a trial math circle. 

We take 1-2 math circles as a trial run to see if we’re all a good fit for each other. There is no commitment to continue, but if we are a good fit, you pay a pro-rated amount for the remainder of the semester and we continue happily along. 

Sometimes it can be hard to find an existing perfect math circle in your area. When that’s the case, you and I may be able to create a new math circle.

how to create a new math circle

Girls love to hang out with their friends, and math circles are no exception. Often the best math circles–and the ones that come together the fastest–are  made up of a group of friends who decide to do a circle together. 

To start a new math circle, we would need:

  1. A minimum of 6 girls of the same grade or similar math levels, who are able to meet at a specific time and place. (Online counts as a “place”.) 
  2. A place to meet–usually hosted at the home of one of the parents. The location must be between San Jose and Redwood City, CA–or online. 
  3. Availability in Kelli’s schedule for a new math circle

Setting up a math circle mainly consists of spreading the word to other interested parents, and finding one parent who can offer their home as a place to meet. 

other details

The cost is $55 per 1.5-hr math circle, payable by semester. We meet once per week. Semesters are generally 13-16 weeks long, depending on holidays and start date. 

Fall semester is September through January. Spring semester is February through May. 

Feel free to contact Kelli for more information about math circles, or click here to get on the waiting list

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *