Enthusiastic college grad joins math department

Caileane Thurston, Reporter

A new math teacher, Jeffrey Kaufman, is entering the new year with a new position teaching at NHS. Kaufman has been appointed as a new mathematics teacher and currently teaches Geometry. He has decided to come teach in USD 373 because he has always lived in the area, and the teachers and administrators have always been welcoming and positive towards him. 

He feels that showing others how to properly perform mathematics is very important and interesting. Math can be a big part of someone’s life and everyone uses it every single day, although sometimes only minimally. The subject can help in a lot of situations in life particularly when it comes to money and saving for future expenses or desires. While now, not every high schooler claims to be good at math, nor likes it, with the help from Kaufman, that stigma could be changed.

“Mathematics is all about seeing patterns in the world around us. I am so intrigued by the patterns I see, and I want to help others see the beauty of mathematics,” Kaufman said. 

Kaufman graduated from Bethel College in December 2021, with a Bachelor of Arts in Mathematics. In 2016, Kaufman graduated from Haven High School which is approximately a 40 minute drive from where he will now be teaching. He hopes to begin helping students in particular to see the joy in mathematics in his new position.

“I hope to help others see the joy of mathematics and to make math class fun,” Kaufman said.

Prior to NHS, Kauffman has not taught any math classes. Despite this, Kauffman believes that he will bring many strengths to the classroom such as being a very outgoing individual. Additionally, he believes he will bring a light hearted and fun attitude along with the occasional fun math joke or pun.

“I am looking forward to meeting and having positive relationships with all of my students [and] I would also really like to start a Railer Roundnet Club,” Kaufman said.

Roundnet is the official name of the sport Spikeball. A Railer Roundnet Club would be a club in which students would meet and play spikeball weekly, weather permitting. Kauffman says he would love to have a team that competes with other high schools in the area, and possibly even take a team to play in the National Spikeball tournament one day.

“I really enjoy playing this sport and would love to share my enjoyment with others,” Kauffman said.

Kauffman believes the most challenging aspect of his job will be trying to break the “math is boring” barrier. Many students like math but others currently do not, therefore, Kauffman hopes that his excitement for mathematics will be contagious and energize the classroom. Additionally, he hopes that others will come to love the subject and become excited about it just from being around him. 

“I think I will be a good fit for this position because I have a contagious positive and fun loving attitude and enjoy working with high school students,” Kauffman said.