When young students were having trouble learning math and music concepts, Clara Castano invented a brand-new approach: special cards that made the learning process fun – and fast. The Colombian-born entrepreneur now is President of CCRiddles, publisher of Learning Cards™ and the Music Theory Workbooks. These innovative teaching tools for teachers, students, and parents engage and challenge music theory learners of all ages and levels.
Clara’s first product, Learning Cards™ for math, was born seven years ago in her son’s elementary classroom. During five years of tutoring young students in basic math, Clara developed unique pocket-sized math cards parents could use to help young students memorize and retain math concepts.
Clara believes children achieve their greatest potential when parents and teachers become partners to help them. When her own son needed help preparing for his music theory tests, Clara’s lack of musical background stymied her. Instead of giving up, she devoured information in theory books, music dictionaries, and the Internet, which she then synthesized into another versatile learning tool. Students enjoyed her colorful music theory Learning Cards™, which presented questions in a riddle format that successfully increased knowledge retention and made learning easier and fun.
The late Peter Yazbeck, Clara’s son’s music teacher for many years, loved her riddles and encouraged her to expand her product. Since then, Clara and Peter collaborated on their passion to increase musical literacy for both students and parents. With his encouragement, she formed CCRiddles, which published the popular music theory Learning Cards™ and the Music Theory Workbooks. Both programs have received enthusiastic feedback from top music teachers as well as parents.
Prior to founding CCRiddles, Clara earned a B.S. degree in Computer Science and won several awards for her 20 years of contributions to the development and management of database systems with Fortune 500 companies. Clara emigrated to the U.S. from Colombia at the age of 17; she and her family now live in Southern California where she continues to expand and improve her creative products and curriculum.