Ashok C. Popat

Update! We're in empy-nester phase and moved to San Carlos.

Old info:

Hi, this site is from 2014 and hasn't been updated since except to automatically convert to the new Google Sites. Wishing you well, visitor!

Math tutoring

Hi, I live in Menlo Park, CA.  I enjoy tutoring high school math and science, motivated kids only, grades 5 or 6 through 12.  My degrees are in electrical engineering and computer science (SB, SM, PhD from MIT).  I'll only tutor kids who are already motivated and interested.  I do not charge for tutoring.  Example topics: proofs, the why's of different laws, complex numbers, induction, number theory, real analysis and calculus, linear algebra, probability and statistics, multivariate calculus, topology.  The more advanced the subject, the more I'll approach it as being a study partner rather than teacher.  Discussions will be organized around a text in most cases; I have suggestions of suitable texts for most topics, and am always open to suggestions of others.  I usually just take on one student at a time, once or twice a week.

Readings / "Conversations"

For the past few years I've been reading with my kids for about 1/2 hour each Sunday.  We read selections from Epictetus, Marcus Aurelius, Dale Carnegie, Ernest Dimnet, and other classics, and occasionally from modern writers.  We meet either one-on-one or the three of us together, taking turns reading, and pausing to digest each set of ideas.  We discuss what we read to get meaning out of every part, relating it to other things we have read or know, sometimes making a vocabulary list, and sometimes looking up a word on-the-spot either in the physical dictionary I keep handy, or on one of their phones.  Although we joke about this Sunday ritual being a chore for them they actually look forward to it and enjoy it a lot.  We keep it light and they see that thinking deeply and getting to the bottom of something interesting can be very fun.  It's complementary to the hectic approach to learning they get in school.  I got the idea from Margaret Fuller's "conversations" in the early 1800s in Massachusetts, kind of a book club where you discussed interesting stuff deeply, guided by material by very smart and articulate writers.  I've only done this with my kids so far, but I'm good at it and would be happy to do it with other kids, grades say 6-12.  For this I'd want to do it on Sunday mid-day-ish, and we'd have to figure out where, but probably our place would be best.  I will not charge for this either.

For either the math tutoring or readings, feel free to contact me at  Phone is also okay: I'm listed in the Menlo Park white pages, or doing a web search for "ashok popat monterey contact info menlo park" will find my home phone number.

Background check:  I've been cleared as a volunteer tutor at the Boys and Girls Club of the Peninsula and went through clearance a few years ago when I was a basketball coach for Las Lomitas league.  This involved a TB test and fingerprinting, and probably some background check as well.

Again, I won't charge for either the tutoring or the readings.