Veader brings purpose and passion into math class

As students walk into Mr. Veader’s math class, they are met with not just math but an organized, thoughtful approach to teaching it.

Veader’s quiet humor, comprehensive structure, approach to teaching and meaningful contributions to discussions allows him to form strong bonds with both students and his fellow teachers.

Veader started out as a mechanical engineer, but after feeling like there was more meaningful work to be done, he became a teacher.

“I just felt that I was spending my time doing something that wasn’t having enough of an impact on people and wasn’t important enough,” Veader said. “I decided that I didn’t want to keep spending most of my waking hours doing something that I didn’t think was important enough. Education is certainly something that I’ve always felt was important.”

Mathematics Curriculum Coordinator Joshua Paris spoke very highly of Veader, especially surrounding his use of structure in the classroom.

Paris talked about the many organizational systems and rules that need to be put into effect and how Veader implements them well.

“He thinks about all those very carefully to try to frame students’ learning experiences carefully and in ways that will hold them accountable and help them become independent and also support them,” Paris said.

Christine Shen, a math teacher who has a close relationship to Veader, emphasized her fondness of his subtle humor and the way it uplifts the math department and everyone around him.

“His humor is really dry, but it is perfectly executed. He just knows how to come up with these really unique responses to things that are often unexpected and hilarious,” Shen said.

Paris delved deeper into the articulate, caring nature in which Veader conducts his classes.

“He thinks very carefully about all the concepts he presents and figures out ways to structure his instruction in a clear way, and then sets the students free and lets them work through things on their own,” Paris said. “That’s what I look for in a class. I want to see teachers providing students the structure or the infrastructure of the content and then letting them do work because you don’t learn math just by sitting there and listening.”

Beyond school, Veader has many hobbies and pastimes, some that have stuck with him since childhood.

“I played a lot of sports when I was younger, and so I’m still somewhat interested in that. I still play basketball once a week. I certainly enjoy watching sports. I enjoy reading when I can, although it’s tough during the school year, and spending time with my family,” Veader said.

When speaking about the math department as a whole, Veader expressed nothing but gratitude and adoration.

“The teachers in this department are all very thoughtful and think a lot about their teaching practice. I think seeing the way they think about math and the effort they put into it is very inspiring. We push one another to try our best,” Veader said.

Overall, while Veader and his work draw appreciation and inspiration from his coworkers, Paris highlighted his ability to connect with students and convey subjects on a deeper level.

“He’s a great collaborator. He really thinks very carefully about all aspects of teaching, like curriculum, what content is important and what we want to make sure all students in the course learn,” Paris said. “He is always thinking about the best way to deliver instruction and to help students become independent learners.”