The Student News Site of Lake Central High School

Lake Central News

The Student News Site of Lake Central High School

Lake Central News

The Student News Site of Lake Central High School

Lake Central News

Q&A: Mrs. Valerie Gardner


Q: What school did you attend?

A: “I attended Purdue University in West Lafayette.”

Q: How did you get into teaching?

A: “I needed a solid career that I could get out [of school] and get a job because my family didn’t have a lot of money, and at that time teaching was a great opportunity, especially for women.”

Q: Did anyone inspire you to go into teaching or was it a decision you made on your own?

A: “I’m a Lake Central graduate and we had a teacher here. Her name was Marcy Stump, and at the time, there weren’t a lot of female math teachers. She was just really great, and I just thought, ‘Wow I can do that.’ That’s what inspired me.”

Q: Why did you choose to teach Geometry?

A: “Geometry kind of chose me when I was offered my job. I didn’t intend to teach it, but I learned to love it.”

Q: So is Geometry your favorite subject in math?

A: I like [all types of math] but I actually really like Geometry now, and it is probably my favorite subject now that I’ve done it for 22 years.”

Q: What’s the hardest part about teaching?

A: “The hardest part of teaching right now is just the demands of paperwork because the State has so many requirements on us. We spend a lot of our time doing things that are not really teaching which is paperwork, copying our own papers, and stuff like that.”

Q: How do you balance being a teacher and a parent?

A: “You kind of have to organize your life and do as best you can to not bring things home that you don’t need to. If I do bring things home, I do them when my child’s asleep or early in the morning, and that helps me out.”

Q: What’s the best part of being a teacher?

A: “The best part of teaching is just seeing when people get it or when they say, ‘I really like your class’ or ‘I got a good grade’ or ‘I got the best grade I’ve ever gotten.’ That’s really rewarding.”


More to Discover
About the Contributor
Tori Wilkes, Author