Acera BlogStaff Spotlight

Staff Spotlight: Meet Thom Fries

By September 28, 2023No Comments

Thom Fries, Math Specialist Teacher

  • Ph.D, Physics, Tufts University
  • B.A., Dartmouth College
  • Activities: Biking, skiing, reading, cooking
  • Quote: “Make New Mistakes. Make glorious, amazing mistakes. Make mistakes nobody’s ever made before.” – Neil Gaiman
  • Movie: Local Hero. A gentle, human, funny story about self-learning and growth.
  • Song: “Sing Sing Sing” by The Benny Goodman Orchestra. It has amazing energy!
  • Book: Foucault’s Pendulum by Umberto Eco. It’s a complicated and challenging book about knowledge, truth, and how we recognize them – surprisingly timely for a 30 year old book.
If you could go anywhere for two weeks…

I’d tour Italy for the wonderful people, the history, and the fantastic food.

Math at Acera is unique. With its extensive roster of math classes taking place during the same time block, students have the opportunity to explore the math that they are ready to learn. 

As an Acera Math Specialist, Thom Fries is an in integral member of Acera’s math team. Originally a Chartered Financial Analyst, Thom’s love of math and science led him to a career teaching high school math. He came to Acera in 2021, drawn to the school’s creative approach to teaching.

As a teacher, Thom loves the rewarding interactions with Acera’s smart, creative kids, and he excels at inspiring students to enjoy – rather than be intimidated by – math.

“At my previous school, there was one student with major math anxiety,” Thom explained. “I taught her for all four years of her high school career, and was able to get her to relax and let the learning happen. By the time she graduated, she had made incredible progress and, most importantly, no longer feared math.”