Teacher Spotlight: Eric Reini Eric-Reini-BW

How did you learn about Wilson Hill Academy?

 Mrs. Anne Stublen was the first to share with me about Wilson Hill Academy. I talked with her at length, and I realized that WHA is building the best Classical Christian online school out there. They truly have a desire for teachers to come alongside families in educating their children.

What excites you most about being part of the WHA faculty?

 Without a doubt, it is the teachers! I am so pleased that my children get the opportunity to learn from some most amazing men and women who know how to teach in an online setting. Every single one of their teachers is outstanding. (Well, two of them have me for math, but …)

When did your love of math first begin?

Math and I have had an interesting “relationship” over the years. I really enjoyed solving problems and the study of mathematics through my high school years. However, there was a time during college when it was a real struggle for me. I know and understand the feeling of “not getting it” that so many students often feel. I truly believe that that struggle has made me a better teacher today.

While I genuinely enjoy mathematics, my true love and passion is for teaching mathematics to young people. I love teaching them to think logically, to become problem solvers, and to see the order in our complex world.

Why did you decide to teach?

Well, originally, I wanted to teach because I wanted to coach soccer. Looking back I can see that the Lord has a sense of humor! I now have no desire to coach, but I absolutely love teaching and can see the hand of the Lord in bringing me to this profession. The Lord is good and knows me better than I know myself.

How does the Christian worldview impact the way you teach math?

First off, I believe that every family and every student I come alongside is an important and vital part of what the Lord is doing here on earth. Students need to take their God-given gifts and abilities and increase and build upon them. While students have varying levels of ability in math, I believe that each person must learn to develop his/her own reasoning and thinking abilities and learn that the study of math is critical for this development. They must learn to develop and defend their faith. They must be able to develop a logical argument and solve problems as they grow older. They must learn mathematical thinking and problem solving if they are to be the most effective people they can be for the glory of the Lord.

Secondly, mathematics models a created world that is designed with order and follows principles laid out in scripture. Our world is incredible! Mathematics shows order and demonstrates patterns that exist in our created world. The more we learn and understand mathematics, the more we understand our Creator.

What about you? What are some things that you enjoy when you are not teaching at WHA? What kinds of activities are life-giving to you?

 I enjoy anything pertaining to THE Ohio State University athletics! If you have been in my class, you know I love it when I get an “O-H” in the chat box.

I have been married to my wife, Diana, for almost 20 years. I have 6 children (5 daughters, and 1 son) ages 3 to 15. Our lives are full and busy with the wonderful blessing of raising children. The Lord is good!

Can you share a formative experience or book that has impacted your thinking about education and the learning process?

I spent 3 years teaching at an inner city school surrounded by poverty. It was probably the toughest job I ever had. Yet the Lord used that experience in many areas of my life to teach me to empathize and to appreciate the unique value of every person. He helped me learn how to teach those who are hard to teach. It was the Lord’s will to use this experience to shape me both personally and professionally.

Do you have a favorite book or author, one that has made a significant impact on you as a Christian?  

 I was going to say Harry Potter when I read “favorite book,” but I am not sure it has made a significant impact on me as a Christian …

Without being flippant, I must say the Bible. There are many Christian authors who have influenced and helped to shape my thinking. But, it must come back to God’s Word – the source for absolute truth and morality.

Do you have a favorite Christmas memory?

As I think about this question, a flood of memories comes to mind. But I keep coming back to one memory in particular because it fills my heart and mind with the warmth of family and, more importantly, the goodness and faithfulness of God.

It was Christmas of 1999. Diana and I were grieving the loss of our first child the previous October. It had been planned for us to get together with my wife’s family in Tennessee. They were having many people in and the stage was set for a “tender Tennessee Christmas.” I remember the warmth of family during those several days that were filled with playing cards, watching movies, eating food, laughing, and just being there with each other. I remember the Lord gently calming and eventually healing our hearts through the fellowship of family and the passing of time. It is a Christmas remembered fondly by my wife and I, not for the snow on the ground, the gifts given, or even a beautiful church service, but rather for the arms of people we love wrapped around us, showing us something of the love and faithfulness of our Lord who continually gives us a hope for our future.

Almost exactly a year later in October 2000, our daughter Petra joined us. Again, God is faithful. He is good. As we celebrate this Christmas season, worship Him!

Lamentations 3:22-23 says, “The steadfast love of the Lord never cease; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.”

Eric Reini teaches Pre-Algebra, Algebra 1&2, and Algebra Refresher.