Frequently Asked Questions

Click on a question below to see more details!


My child is already doing well at school, why should we come to your classes?
At EMC, we can give your child an opportunity to be challenged above his/her current grade level. Our students gain more in-depth knowledge and understanding of the topics, learn how to solve challenging non-standard and competition problems that are usually not covered by regular school curriculum. Our small groups are 3 to 4 times smaller than a regular school classroom, which allows us to give students personal attention and individualized instruction.
How do I register for classes?
You can find a link to register on the Classes or Summer pages.

If unsure which class you should enrol your student in, please contact us (information above) to schedule a free evaluation / free class. 
Can we try a lesson before commiting?
Absolutely! We encourage that you and your child come to one of the grade appropriate classes and participate in the lesson, free of charge. You will have an opportunity to see how the classes are run, and we will have a chance to assess your child’s level and suggest which group to join. Alternatively, contact us for a free evaluation.
Where/how are classes conducted?
Classes are 1 - 2 hours in length per week and are conducted online via Zoom. 
Circle 0 and 1 are: 1 hour per week
Circle 2+ are: 2 x 1 hour classes per week OR 1.5 hours per week on the weekends
What is the pay schedule?
Families pay monthly, according to the number of classes held in that month.
What happens if we miss a class?
If you know that you will miss a class, we kindly request that you e-mail us ahead of time to let us know. There are no refunds for missed classes, however, we allow you to make up missed lessons in any of the parallel groups, with prior arrangement with the teacher.
What happens if we go on a long vacation?
Engaging Math Circles is closed during the school holidays taken by the San Jose Unified School District. We do not charge you for EMC scheduled holidays. We can always freeze your payments if you travel for a month or longer.
None of the times work for me, but I really want to join your school. What can I do?
Please reach out to us. New groups are forming all the time. We only need 4 students to open up a new group. Likely, there is already somebody waiting for a new group and you might just be the person we need to open it. Also, if you have 3 more friends to join your child, chances are we can form a group at a time that works for you.
Do you have any classes for Homeschoolers?
Our classes are designed to work for students of all skill levels and learning types!
Do kids get a break during the longer classes?
There is a 10-15 minute break during the 1.5hr long classes giving the kids a chance to run around and stretch.
How many students are in each group?
We try to keep our groups small to ensure personal attention to every child. There are typically between 4 and 8 kids in each group.
Circle 0 : 4 students max
Circle 1 - 5 : 6 students max
Pre-Algebra or higher : 8 students max
Occasionally when students need to make up in a different class, these numbers may increase by 1 or 2
What does the number next to a Circle mean?
Every Circle corresponds to skill level, and not grade level. While most Circles are very close to grade level, many of our students are enrolled a level below their current grade level. We recommend scheduling a free evaluation if you wish to accurately place your child in the correct level.
How much homework do the students receive?
Students receive about an hour to two hours of practice questions per week. This will vary from grade to grade, and child to child.
Do you cover the school curriculum? Will my child be prepared to pass placement tests?
We cover everything that your child will be required to know at his / her grade level (and go much deeper into those topics). Our students are well prepared for all of their school math classes and exams as long as they keep pace and do their homework. 
How does your program help kids learn a full year curriculum, while meeting just once or twice a week?
We team up with our families to create a productive learning environment for our students. In class, the kids gain the skills and motivation to learn. We cover key points of the material and solve higher level and challenging problems. At home, we equip parents with the right tools to continue the learning and practice of the skills gained in class.
Do you host summer sessions?
Yes! While Summer classes are open, you can find a Summer page that will allow you to register. We offer two main types of classes: Fun Math (designed to keep students engaged in math through fun games, puzzles and riddles) and Competition Math (designed to build upon and enhance problem solving and analytical thinking skills with competition style math problems)
What are the procedures for cancelling enrollment?
We ask for a 30 day notice in writing when cancelling enrollment.
How do we contact a child’s teacher?
You can always e-mail us at; also, each teacher has their own email address that will be given to you when your child joins a group.
My child is struggling in school, will your program help?
Our program’s main emphasis is on problem solving and creative approaches to standard math curriculum. You will be surprised to see your student blossom in our groups. There is no dry memorization and drills. Your child will be engaged throughout the year, be challenged, encouraged, and will grow in all aspects of math and beyond. We’ve worked with student’s of all levels and complexities. It is our job to work with every family to find the best fit and approach to each student.
My child is advanced / gifted in math, can he/she have an appropriate group to join and be challenged?
We will meet and evaluate your child’s math knowledge and abilities and will most definitely find and appropriate group fit. We have many gifted students in our program, and taylor our lessons to keep them challenged and engaged with depth and variety of topics we cover and problems we solve.
Do you prepare children for math Olympiads?
Most of our students participate in various math olympiads and competitions. We bring in a lot of supplemental olympiad level materials into the classroom and our students are excited and well prepared to compete in math competitions.
We were assigned a Circle and my student is bored. Can my student move up?
Yes! We work with you to make sure your student is challenged and learning new things. We do ask that you try a few lessons with both levels to see if it improves the situation. Sometimes during our evaluations specific skills are tested that will come later on in the Circle you were originally recommended, so the beginning can feel boring if it's review for your student.