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Featuring Lori Steffy Archer '94

Position: Homeschooling mom of four children
Location: Enola, PA
Certification: K-6 Elementary, K-12 Reading Specialist, K-12 Library/Media
Graduate School: Kutztown University
Graduate Program: MA of Elementary Education
(Profiled: April 2013)

  What attracted you to this position?
♦  What are the most gratifying aspects of your job?
♦  What question do you get asked most often?
♦  H
ow did your time at GCC prepare you for the teaching field?
♦  What has been/was your biggest challenge?
♦  What is your favorite educational quote?

What attracted you to this position?
After ten years of teaching in the public school classroom (fifth grade, third grade, kindergarten, and Reading Recovery), I am now employed in what I consider to be my life’s most important and challenging role: that of being “Mom.”  All my experiences, training, and skills as a teacher collided with the amazing God-given opportunity to stay home with my children. As a public school teacher, I had a philosophy of education that involved preparing children for the global economy and being productive citizens. As a mom, I have found my vision to be much more specific. I am raising children to be disciples of Christ. I am raising children not just to be citizens, but to be leaders with the heart of a servant. I want them to have a rigorous classical education accompanied by plenty of time to play and explore their own interests in a nurturing environment. For our family, I find that these goals are best met by homeschooling.

What are the most gratifying aspects of your job?

The best part of being a homeschooling parent is seeing the fruits of my labor and prayers. There is nothing on earth like teaching a child to read, except for teaching your own child to read! I love to see them learn, to see them love learning, and to see them work hard. I love that each of their educational experiences can be individualized to their exact abilities and skills. And I love the amount of time we spend together as a family.

What question do you get asked most often?

The question I hear most often is, “But what about socialization?” I guess it depends mostly on your definition of socialization. The majority of society assumes a plan for healthy socialization of a child is to place them in a classroom with 24 other children of similar age and background as their primary social influence 8 hours a day. By contrast, many homeschoolers believe that children are better socialized in a more “real-world” environment which daily exposes them to adult role models, younger children, older children, and more diverse backgrounds than they would find in a homogenous school setting. If the true definition of socialization is used, that of socializing children to citizenship within a culture, then my children are well exposed on a daily basis. As part of this socialization, my children spend time with peers on sports teams and at Sunday school. And, like most good parents, I am deliberate about sheltering my children from certain aspects of our culture until they are mature enough to know how to think through and handle difficult issues. I am proud to say that my children are friendly, out-going, confident, well-spoken, and respectful.

How did your time at GCC prepare you for the teaching field?

Grove City College gave me the best education possible. The rigor and challenge, the breadth and depth of my GCC education prepared me well for life in general and for the field of education in particular. Grove City College gave me the very type of education I want to give my own children. I want them to read the best of literature, to see the beauty of mathematics, to study Latin that they might better appreciate the grammar and vocabulary of language, to see God's amazing plan throughout history from Creation through the Ancients to present day. GCC taught me the importance of setting high standards, the value of work ethic, and the joy of life-long learning. I pray I pass this vision on to my children.


What has been/was your biggest challenge?

My biggest challenge (and joy) as a homeschooler has been the freedom given to me as their primary educator. For years as a public school educator, I was provided with standards, curriculum, and grade-level expectations. I did have more freedom in my district than in many, but I was still constrained by the school's vision and goals. As a homeschooler, I am the one to choose the philosophy, goals, curricula, budget and school hours. And in the end, I alone am accountable for the education my children receive. I have gained so much knowledge by reading about educational philosophies that I was not exposed to in my public school training such as classical education, Charlotte Mason education, Unschooling, and more. I enjoy trying out different curricula, many of which have been developed by homeschoolers. It has been a fantastic learning journey.


What is your favorite educational quote?

To whom much has been given, much will be required.” Luke 12:48b

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