Rebel Roundup

Springtime is state MCA test time for many students. Encourage your child to do their best with this advice.


Focus on schoolwork: The work habits your child uses all year long are the same ones they’ll need on test day. Have them keep a list of what they do well when they complete schoolwork, such as double-checking math answers or proofreading their work.


Try a strategy: Let your youngster practice a key test-taking strategy in a stress-free way. Make up imaginary questions like “What is a unicorn’s favorite food?” List answer choices, including one that’s “right” (A: rainbow sprinkles), one that seems wrong (B: coal), and two that sound possible (C: pasta, D: pizza). While the question isn’t real, the strategy is—discard any obviously wrong answers, then weigh your first instinct against the remaining choices.


Practice keyboarding: The state tests are done on a computer, help them work on keyboarding. They might type a story they wrote or email a relative, for instance. They’ll practice typing, using special keys (shift, enter), and pointing and clicking the mouse on commands (save, send).


Be strategic. Suggest that your youngster use strategies that increase their chances of getting the right answer. If they have to answer multiple-choice questions about a passage, they could read the questions first so they know what to look for in the text. For fill-in-the-blank items, they might read the sentence with each possible answer to see which one makes the most sense.


Plan before writing. Your child will do better on a short answer or essay section if they take time to plan what they will write. This may be as simple as listing his main points on scrap paper. Then, they can write about each point in a separate paragraph in the essay. Or they might create an outline. The essay will be more organized, and they’ll be more likely to include all the important information.


Idea: Tell your youngster to stay calm and confident. Remind them that they have been preparing for the test simply by going to school and completing their work. We will begin our MCA testing in April for our students in grade 3-6 at the elementary.


A special shout out to staff and parents for being supportive during this academic school year. Parents are the child’s first teacher and we could not educate students without you continued encouragement and support. I feel confident that all our students will perform well on the upcoming MCA tests.

It feels like spring after a long cold winter. I’m excited for warmer weather and longer days. Best of luck to our spring activities as they begin their seasons. Please contact me at 507-836-6450 x 5102 or email with any questions you may have.


Todd Burlingame

MCC Elementary Principal