For a number of years, MCA has worked with New England Prep (NEP) for ACT and SAT test prep. This program is embedded into our math and English curriculum for students in Grades 8-11, and it has yielded positive results in test performance for our students. In concert with some other test prep initiatives over the past several years, New England Prep has helped MCA students improve our school average ACT score from about 24 to a current average around 26. We have also had increasing numbers of students earning scores well into the 30s on their ACT!
New England Prep also offers a test prep program for the PSAT test, which students take in the fall of their junior year. The PSAT is the qualifier for recognition as a National Merit Scholar, an achievement that can bring significant college scholarship offers, including free ride offers!
In partnership with New England Prep, Maranatha is bringing this PSAT prep course to MCA. This is a two-session program with half completed in the spring or summer of sophomore year, and the second half completed in the fall of the junior year just prior to the test. If you take the spring or summer session, expect to continue with the fall session. If you do not take the spring or summer session, you will not be eligible for Part 2 in the fall.
Following are the details for the summer session:
This program will be taught by former MCA student and teacher Elizabeth Brandstrom. Mrs. Brandstrom has been offering ACT, PSAT, and TOEFL test prep at MCA for several years with extraordinary success. Students in her ACT test prep programs are enjoying significant gains, often as much as a 4-point increase in their ACT scores. Recently, Mrs. Brandstrom travelled to Florida for training with NEP in this PSAT test prep program.
The summer classes are tentatively scheduled from 8:30-12:30 on Tuesdays and Thursdays starting June 20 and including the following dates: June 20, 22, 27, 29; July 9, 11, 16, and 18. Practice Tests will be held on Saturday mornings from 8:00-1:00 on the following dates: June 24; July 8, 15, and 22.
This program represents approximately 100 hours of PSAT test preparation. According to NEP and Mrs. Brandstrom, the training provided in this program is highly transferable and will certainly result in significant gains for your student in their ACT score as well.
Please carefully and prayerfully consider registering your student for this PSAT test prep program. If your student can perform successfully next fall on the PSAT test to the degree of achieving National Merit status, he or she can receive significant college scholarship offers, even up to a full ride.
We are working on a plan currently to build the fall session into an actual class period during First Quarter to accommodate fall athletes, work schedules, etc. The fall session, even as a class, will require four to five mandatory Saturday morning practice tests.
For additional information and pricing, please contact the Upper School Administrative Offices by calling 763-488-7900 and asking to be transferred.
Maranatha Christian Academy is excited to announce a few recent grants that our teachers have received this year! These three grants, totaling $13,300, are helping MCA maintain the academically rigorous curriculum that helps shape our students into children who love learning.
Congratulations to grade 3 teacher Jody Szwaja and grade 1 teacher Colette Winn for their receipt of an $800 grant to sustain their existing greenhouse grant. This greenhouse learning environment allows students the chance to get their hands dirty! From experimenting with soil and seed types to practicing the scientific method, students are using real-world experiments to practice skills necessary for college and career readiness.
The MISF grant will help create a more manageable and sustainable greenhouse, as the funds will be used to install a watering system and a composting system. Funds will also be used to help teachers develop skills and activities that will allow students from all grade levels to enjoy our greenhouse project.
Congratulations are also in order for S.T.E.A.M. Center Director and teacher Evan Handrick and Learning Commons Director Stacy Huether. This $7,500 grant will allow Handrick and Huether to create a MakerSpace into our Lower School Learning Commons. MakerSpaces allow students to engage in hands-on creation and problem solving. Three products will be introduced into this space: Keva Planks, Cubelets, and Magformers (follow links for more information on these innovative tools).
Over the summer, Handrick and Huether will design a space that whole classes can use to learn practical science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics skills in a hands-on environment that is both engaging and educational. Classes will be scheduled for 45 minute sessions in the MakerSpace 1-2 times a week to participate in a variety of stations.
Finally, congratulations to MCA+ Director Darlene Brown and MCA+ Tutor Director Tanya Marvel for their $5000 grant to fund the project “Decoding Dyslexia Through Technology.” This project will help teachers implement technology in their classrooms that will increase student achievement, particularly those living with dyslexia. The funds will be used to purchase curriculum, apps, a laptop, and iPads for our developing dyslexia program in Maranatha’s MCA+ Enrichment Center.