“Traveling” to South America This Summer

by John Witt, Lower and Middle School Spanish Teacher
I really enjoy expanding my own academic and personal interests with students during summer language classes. I love that I have more time to explore culture more in-depth, so students can experience it through fun and creative perspectives.
This year, I will be “traveling” with Lower School Spanish students to a few major cities of South America on virtual tours! This gives students a chance to use vocabulary that they have learned over the school year. We will also expand our knowledge of other countries through activities and games that share the rich culture of each place.
I am also offering a refresher course for Middle School students that will be conversation-based. I find that in the summer, older students really want a chance to learn more about culture in other countries and practice their conversation skills.
For more information and to register for these or other summer classes or Panther Camp weeks, visit moundsparkacademy.org/summer.

Posted: March 20, 2017 at 9:43 AM in:  All School, Lower School, Middle School

Where In The World Are These Panthers?

Whether your Spring Break takes you across town or around the world, send MPA your photos so our social media followers can try to guess your location. This was a very fun and popular feature last summer and we hope it will be again this Spring Break. Hints and Panther gear more than welcome! No names will be used. Email us at communications@moundsparkacademy.org. Safe travels!


Posted: March 20, 2017 at 9:39 AM in:  All School

Black Box Theatre Takes Center Stage

We are excited to announce that this year’s Spring Auction Fund a Need will allow MPA to  transform the Black Box Theatre! This important initiative will support a staple space in our community used by all students for both classroom instruction and theatre performances. Our goal is to raise $100,000. This will allow us to:

  • modernize our electrical system for safety and practicality based on the theatre’s heavy usage;
  • reimagine the costume room layout with a room expansion and storage redesign;
  • replace the current Black Box curtains with a full set of performance and masking curtain options;
  • elevate our many audience members’ comfort with new seating;
  • accommodate multiple theatre venue styles with a new, flexible set of seating platforms;
  • remodel the make-up room with new paint, lights, seating, and cohesive storage concepts and much, much more!

Watch for more information to come about this exciting project and get your tickets to the Spring Auction today!


Posted: March 20, 2017 at 9:37 AM in:  All School

Head’s Message: Permission to Create and Explore

By Dr. Bill Hudson, Head of School

Although winter is not yet ready to let go, as evidenced by Sunday’s snowfall, spring is beginning to make itself known at Mounds Park Academy. It has been a rather busy week with several rites of spring making their appearance. The Upper School is in the throes of final exams, Middle School is in i-Term, and Lower School students are embarking on a series of project-based learning experiences. The energy level is building as Friday approaches.

I was away from school for several days in early March attending the annual conference of the National Association of Independent Schools. A central theme of the conference was innovation. It is also a buzzword in educational circles as well as in business and industry. People in all sectors tend to confuse technology and innovation. They are not synonymous and technology is only one piece of the innovation puzzle.

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Posted: March 15, 2017 at 9:47 PM in:  All School, Head's Message, Middle School

Alumna Update: Christina Berget ’09

After graduating from Mounds Park Academy in 2009, I went to Saint Olaf College in Northfield, MN, where I graduated with a major in Human Resources. While at Saint Olaf, I designed my own major in HR using a variety of courses in the Management Studies, Psychology, and Sociology/Anthropology departments. I filled the rest of my schedule with Theater and Music classes, and enjoyed using the leadership skills developed through my major with actors in my Stage Directing classes. I also spent six months studying abroad through Saint Olaf’s Global Semester, where I took Global Psychology courses and spent time in Egypt, India, Thailand, Hong Kong, and South Korea. During the summers of my college career, I worked at summer day camp in Stillwater MN, Hidden Pines Ranch, where I found my true passion for working with children.

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Posted: March 15, 2017 at 9:07 AM in:  Alumni

Yoga Calm Featured in MPA Lower School

MPA alumna and PreK teaching assistant shares her passion for yoga with her young charges

by Annie Stewart ’11, teaching assistant

Many yoga practitioners remember their first yoga class as the day their life changed. My first class was at the Heartworks Yoga studio in Northfield, Minn. when I was a sophomore at St. Olaf. I was living in the dorms and going through a challenging time. My friends suggested that I try a yoga class—a hot yoga class. I don’t know how I survived the 100-degree heat, the high humidity, and the crazy moves, but I was hooked.

Today I am sharing my love of yoga with the Lower School students at Mounds Park Academy. I think it’s vitally important for young children to experience yoga. They are experiencing a lot of emotions—and expending even more energy—during the course of the day. As teachers, we often expect them to sit still and listen, not move or chat with their neighbors. Few adults have that control!

I asked some of my students what they like about Yoga Calm. One said, “It calms me, and I just love time to be still.” Another shared, “If I am having a bad day, remembering these techniques really helps me calm down.” A young boy said, “I can get nervous before tests and this really helps relax me.” Another student said, ““I showed my mom how to do the yoga flow. She was really stressed about her annual meeting at work.”

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Posted: March 13, 2017 at 7:23 PM in:  All School, Lower School, Parents Association

Dinner is Served!

Panther Family Dinners are back! They are a convenient way to quickly get dinner on the table! Find these offerings in the small refrigerator in the cafeteria and place your payment in the box on top.
  • Roast Beef Au Jus: Serves 5-7, $12
  • Beef Tips & Brown Rice: Serves 5-7, $12
  • Vegetable Eggrolls: 8, $9
  • Cheese Ravioli with Housemade Marinara & Parmesan: Serves 5-7, $15

Posted: March 10, 2017 at 8:30 AM in:  All School

Science Fun in the Summer

by Russ Purdy, Extended Day and Summer Program Coordinator

I love teaching science because students are naturally curious about the world in which they live, and therefore, natural scientists. As soon as they utter that first “why?” a junior scientist is born. Students learn best by doing, and will remember what they discover for themselves.

I’m very excited to teach the “Science Wizards” and “Kitchen Science” classes at Summer at MPA! During these classes we will ask questions, conduct experiments, stretch our minds, and learn that science is involved in every aspect of our lives. But, most importantly, the process will be interactive, hands-on, and FUN!

For more information and to register for these or other summer classes or Panther Camp weeks, visit moundsparkacademy.org/summer.


Posted: March 10, 2017 at 8:27 AM in:  All School, Lower School, Middle School

Save The Date For Passover Cultural Celebration

The Parents Association would like to invite all MPA friends and families to our final Cultural Celebration of the year on Friday, April 14 from 3:10–5 PM in the Cafeteria. Join us as we retell the Passover story and experience coconut macaroons, chocolate covered matzoh, and other Passover treats.

An adult must accompany all Lower School students. There is no cost to participate but we do request your RSVP so we can plan for you. Please RSVP by April 6, 2017 with your family’s information including student’s name and grade, as well as adult guests by emailing the Parents Association.

If your family would like to learn more about Passover or the Jewish religion there are several books in the MPA library on these topics.

Please contact Christine Larson or Amanda Campbell, Parents Association Co-Presidents, if you have any questions.


Posted: March 10, 2017 at 8:20 AM in:  All School, Parents Association