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Third, fourth and fifth grade MCA’s

All third, fourth and fifth grade students at Park Brook will take the MCA’s on April 20, 21, 26 and 27. There are two-days scheduled for math assessments and two-days scheduled for reading assessments.

The Minnesota Comprehensive Assessments (MCA’s) are taken by all students in grades 3, 4 and 5 across the State of Minnesota. The test measures both proficiency-level and growth from year-to-year. Students in fifth grade will also take the MCA science test, at Park Brook and across the state.

Students have been preparing for these assessments all year. However, there are a few things you can do to help your child be prepared to do their best on these assessments:

  • Have your child in school every day, and on time to school every day.
  • Be sure your child gets 9 – 11 hours of sleep every day so that they are prepared for learning when they are in school.
  • Be sure your child gets 60 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (play time) every day.
  • We also encourage students to practice sit-ups and push-ups every day.
  • Have your child read at-home every day.
  • Enjoy eating together as a family, without the television or cell phones.

You will notice that this list does not contain homework or what they should study every evening. Students have been working throughout the school year to prepare for these assessments, and as soon as they are finished, we actually begin preparing for the assessments the following year as we teach through the end of the school year.

The most important thing to note is that having students prepared for learning when they are in school is the best way to prepare for the assessments.

If your child does not have the multiplication facts memorized, this would be important for them to work on at home.

As a school we primarily focus on growth, not to say that proficiency is not important, but the goal is to have students make significant growth from their individual level at the beginning of the school year.  The Park Brook Staff adjusts instructional strategies to increase growth for all students.

California Department of Education graph

The graph shows the relationship between academic growth and fitness levels.  On average, when students demonstrate proficiency on more fitness tests (sit-ups, push-ups, mile run,…), there is an increase in the percentage of students who are proficient in reading and math. For example, for students who demonstrate proficiency on one fitness test, 29% of these students demonstrate grade-level proficiency in reading; when students demonstrate proficiency in all six fitness tests, 55% of the students demonstrate proficiency in reading. This is the reason why Park Brook is a school with a Focus on Fitness.  

Please feel welcome to reach out to Mr. Taylor,, if you have questions regarding this graph, the Focus on Fitness initiative, or other questions related to the MCA’s.