She’s a full-time mom, a pastor’s wife, a ministry leader, and in between all that, the Middle and High School Science Science teacher at TC Christian. Say hello to Erica Boven.
What do you love about TC Christian?
I love the Christ-centered focus of every class. I love that we start our day with prayer. I love that staff is dedicated to seeing students succeed and they are willing to go to great lengths to help them become who they were created to be. I love that students freely ask questions that connect their faith to the creation around them. I love that we have the freedom to take the time to explore these things. I love the way that I see several student leaders actively looking for ways to encourage other students and show Christ-like love. I love the deep relationships that are built here. I simply love all that TCCS is and all that they do!
As a mom, I love that my children will gain a Biblical perspective in all that they do throughout the day. I love that teachers see my whole child and do their best to bring out their gifts while strengthening their areas of weakness. I love that this is all done in an encouraging and life giving manner. I love that when conflicts arise between classmates, I have confidence knowing that the staff will walk through the process of reconciliation with my children in a Christ honoring way. It truly is a partnership to raise our children up in the way they should go.
What motivated you to become a teacher at TC Christian?
I had taken time off from teaching to be at home with my children when they were young. Once they were both enrolled in school here, I felt led to get back in the classroom. The Lord opened up an opportunity for me to do that in a way I didn’t expect. My previous teaching placements were always at an elementary level.
But, I LOVE this new opportunity to teach science to middle and high school students! I love exploring Creation with my students and seeing the fingerprints of God in so many different areas. I love to see the excitement in their eyes when they discover things for themselves. I love the relationships that we build with our students. I love praying with students and authentically “doing life” with them. I love that God has asked me to partner with Him to help students see the truths that are counter cultural, and giving them the tools they need to walk in confidence as they defend their faith. I love the partnership that we have with families because we all know we are on the same team. I truly count it an honor and privilege to be part of the amazing TCCS staff!
How do you incorporate a Christian Worldview in your lessons at TCCS?
Science is simply exploring creation, and creation points to our Creator. I love helping students make these connections as we stand in awe of the way things work all around us. I love helping my students understand how other worldview’s interpret things and giving them opportunities to see evidence for defending their faith through creation. I love the way that TCCS staff is united to incorporate “Biblical through-lines” into all of our classes in a way that uses common terminology to help students see that God is truly everywhere and He has invited us to partner with Him in sharing the Good News with the world around us.
What is a unique experience, talent or interest that you bring to your role to help shape the experience of students and their families?
I did not become a Christian until after college. Therefore, most of my education was from an evolutionary perspective. I think that God has used this for good because I can help students understand how non-Christians see things. I often tell them this…. “I wasn’t stupid before I became a Christian, I just didn’t have all the right information. Based on the information I had, evolution seemed logical. It is our job as followers of Christ, to bring the rest of the creation story to the world around us.” I think that these conversations help my students grow in their ability to understand where other people are at and build a bridge from that point to share their ideas about Christ.
God also made me very relational and authentic. I do not have the ability to mask my emotions very well….and that used to make me crazy! However, I am learning to see this as a gift because students and families know that I am “real.” I love deeply and truly see my students as an extension of the family that God has called me to steward. My heart is all in! Students know that I am here to listen, encourage, support, and pray for them in any aspect of their life.
What sets TC Christian students apart from students in other schools?
TCCS students face the same challenges, struggles, trials, and temptations that all students face. I think it’s important to note that they are not immune from those challenges. They are all walking different journeys and are at varying places in “living out their personal testimony.” However, the way that most of these students handle these challenges is what sets them apart from many in their generation. They may feel anxious about the circumstances around them, but they know the source of peace and hope. They may struggle with individuals around them, but they know we are all created in God’s image and therefore deserve love, respect, and encouragement. They may not know what their future holds, but they know the One who does. They see the world differently not because THEY are different as individuals, but because of the One who lives in them. This reality is a powerful tool and opens many doors for them to be agents of change in the world around them. People see that difference in the way the live out their lives. They truly are set apart.
A TC Christian tagline is “Teaching Students Purpose”. How do you accomplish this in your role at TCCS?
My heart is to help students see their purpose in the “bigger story.” They were created on purpose and for a purpose. Many youth in the culture today have been separated from truth about how they got here and where they are going. Without that perspective, they simply live in the moment….feeling lost and disconnected. As we explore creation together in science class, it allows students to see truth about how they got here and gain an understanding that they were created by a loving God who desires to partner with them to accomplish something bigger than themselves. They have an essential role to play…both today while in TC, as well as in the future wherever God leads them. They were created to know God and make Him known. Science is a great avenue for that!
What do you want students to gain from having known you?
I hope that my passion for Jesus, His creation, and His people is contagious. I pray that the authentic relationships that I build with my students are something that helps strengthen their faith and helps them discover who they are in Christ. I want students to see authenticity in my life and gain an understanding of how truly loved they are. I pray that I reflect Jesus to them every single day and encourage them to do the same.