Whitestone siblings launch online education platform to help remote students and parents

Courtesy of Enzo Marchese

As formal classroom settings have changed and more students are opting for remote learning amid the ongoing COVID-pandemic, two Queens siblings are providing virtual support to families through their online educational platform called The Learning Room

Whitestone residents Daniela and Enzo Marchese founded The Learning Room (TLR) in June 2017, which has since evolved into a tailor-made learning experience for children. The center, located at 7-30 149th St. in Whitestone, has clients across New York City and nationally. Its staff consists of dedicated and progressive educators specializing in a wide range of subjects. 

The Learning Room has become a home for all, and is one of the most innovative brands in education today offering services such as tutoring, test prep, art therapy, wellness classes, creative lab workshops and foreign language classes. 

During the pandemic, technology has become a vital tool in helping to keep families connected. However, for those who may not be tech savvy when it comes to navigating online learning programs, Daniela and Enzo have managed to create a sense of calm during a time of chaos. 

“We send project managers to students’ homes to help with remote learning, academic and technical support,” Enzo said. “There are still a lot of people in this world that are not tech friendly, even though we have iPhones and iPads. Parents don’t understand Zoom and we didn’t have an online platform until COVID hit.” 

The sibling duo’s online service allows one-on-one and group remote learning experiences with the ability to navigate Google Classrooms for each student, streamline assignments and create unique, individualized learning experiences without neglecting human interaction. 

The Learning Room is not a traditional educational service, according to Enzo. They create customized programs for each student who enters their facility, as well as those who on-board remotely, and they’re paired with an educator based on their need and personality.  

“Kids are very comfortable here. It doesn’t feel like a school, but more of a learning spa with cleanliness, bamboo and essential oils,” Enzo said. “It’s a special place in the sense where you can really dive into what you love and learn the way you want to learn.”

The Learning Room has been a dream come true for Daniela, who started the business when she entered motherhood with her first-born child. 

“TLR is a game changer. It is probably the most incredible place I’ve ever had an opportunity to be in,” Daniela said. “It is a positive space where every child is truly treasured, and where no two children learn or are taught the same.”

As an educator, Daniela taught first grade students at St. Luke’s in Whitestone and adults with dyslexia at St. John’s University. Though she left the classroom, she continued to tutor kids in the local library, her home and parents’ home. 

“When I realized I had more students than I could take on I started distributing work to my friends and former colleagues,” Daniela said. “Even then, business was coming in, and I knew I had to do something to help my students — saying no was just not an option.”

Now, more than ever, The Learning Room provides comfort, knowledge and security for all of their community. 

“We set these kids up for success. We bring out the very best in each of them, and sky is truly the limit to how far we will go for each and every one of our families enrolled with us,” Daniela said. “TLR has completed me, and I am honored to be part of this journey each day.”

Daniela and Enzo are planning to launch a TLR merchandise line of loungewear, and there are plans to transform the front section of the center into a boutique. 

Together, they’re trying to make the best of the “new normal” helping to educate kids and staying informed about what is currently taking place in the education world today. 

“The amount of calls we get daily regarding the chaos in school and the hysteria is crazy,” Enzo said. “These kids should be happy to go to school and they genuinely miss school for the most part. They want to be with their friends and it makes learning a lot easier.” 

Enzo and Daniela say they’re proud to give back to their community that served as the foundation for who they are today, which is extremely rewarding. 

“We’re trying to be the light at the end of the tunnel for these kids,” Enzo said. “With an online platform we’re able to have more of an impact and further outreach to students and their families. It’s very alive here and I think we live in a time where people are not connected and we have a connection with these kids. It makes Daniela and I feel really good.” 

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