An unexpected opportunity
A teaching career inspired by a mission trip. Kaitlin Skeie (pronounced “Shay-a”) thought she would grow up and become a veterinarian because she loves animals. That was until she went on a high school mission trip and got the chance to work with kids. “I absolutely loved it. I was energized every day from the […]
Education during a pandemic – the academic gap
Six months have passed since the US closed businesses and schools in an effort to slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus. Schools across the nation shifted to distance learning in March 2020. What started out as a temporary closure turned into the remainder of the 2019-20 school year. The quality and time of direct […]
Golfing in support of Christian education
The 23rd Annual Golf Classic raised over $64,000 for Variable Tuition On Monday, September 14, NLA hosted our 23rd Annual Golf Classic at Prestwick Golf Club. 142 golfers came out to support Variable Tuition for students at New Life, raising $64,220 in critical funds. Variable Tuition extends Christian education to families that might otherwise not be able to access […]
A Foundation to Build Upon
John and Sydney Horner – My New Life Story Meet John (’14) and Sydney (Steele ’15) Horner. They both graduated from New Life Academy. After meeting in middle school, they started dating in high school and got married in June 2017. “I had a huge crush on him the first day that I started at New Life Academy in seventh grade,” laughed Sydney. “I saw him walking down the hallway and […]
Bringing History to Life
Becca Wyant is one of the newest teachers at New Life Academy. Up until this fall, Ms. Wyant was teaching Middle School and High School Social Studies in Kuwait. Now – for her eighth year teaching – she’s the Upper School History teacher at New Life. She can’t wait to use her international experience to […]
Discovering God’s Faithfulness
Jacque Olson is the new Middle School Bible teacher. The one main thing she wants to communicate with her students this year is that God is faithful, especially during this current season. So many people are wondering: “Is God faithful enough to bring us through this?” or “Are things really to going to be okay?” […]
Elaina is thankful for teachers who really care about students
Growing up hasn’t always been easy for Elaina. There have been challenging times and heartbreaking situations.But she has been surrounded by friends and teachers at New Life Academy that care for her and have helped her navigate through hard things
I have my dream job – teaching middle school and science are my two favorite things
Emily Streeter began teaching at New Life Academy in August. Get to know one of our newer teachers! Formerly, Mrs. Streeter has taught in both private and public schools. She teaches 7-8 grade science at NLA, which includes life science and earth science.
Mateo is thriving in school – but it wasn’t always that way.
Mateo attended New Life for kindergarten but transferred to public school in first grade. From the beginning Mateo struggled with being bullied both on the bus and in the classroom. By November Mateo was in tears every day and was not thriving at school. He did not feel safe and was in constant fear of […]
Ella found a caring Christian school that is helping her thrive
Ella, Class of 2023, was experiencing verbal bullying at her previous school. It got to a point where she was no longer thriving in school, in fact she felt like she was barely surviving on a daily basis. She would regularly look for excuses to stay home from school out of fear of what the […]
My New Life Story: Discovering A Call to Teach
Sam St. Cyr graduated from New Life Academy in 2017. She attended New Life in high school from freshman to senior year. Currently, Sam is attending Wheaton College in Illinois, double majoring in English and Secondary Education. She was motivated to choose her majors due to the relationships she had with her teachers at New […]
Inspirational Faith: Overcoming Challenges and Emerging Stronger
New Life Academy is made up of a lot of unique people and many individual stories. One of these unique people is Louise Erickson. You can find her holding a teacup, teaching first grade, making a catchy comment, or hustling down the halls. Louise has been teaching at New Life Academy for 28 years. We’re […]
Innovation and Inspiration
Kathy Lutes is the enrichment teacher at New Life Academy. Her classes range from one student to 15 students. These classes allow her to go deeper into a child’s understanding and push them to think differently or try something new. Students from second to eighth grade love the engaging activities in Mrs. Lutes’ class. Kathy […]
Marie was inspired to take her learning outside of the classroom
Marie, Class of 2025, was inspired to take her learning outside of the classroom when she solved a problem her sister was having. Marie participates in problem-based learning (PBL) during her enrichment class.
Culture and Connections
Sylvia Stubbs has been teaching Spanish at New Life Academy for 16 years. Her classroom ceiling is covered with beautiful, colorful murals painted by students. Murals are an important part of Spanish culture, and this project allows students to express creativity while sharing their own experiences. Sylvia enjoys being able to take students out of […]
Be the Light
Kerri Kent began working at New Life Academy in 2009 as a substitute teacher and eventually moved into teaching 3rd grade. After taking time away while her children were young, Kerri returned to New Life Academy and is now teaching Preschool Prep where she loves teaching two and three-year-olds!
Building Relationships and Engaging Students
Laurie Dahlen has been teaching for 14 years. She recently started teaching fourth grade at New Life Academy. We sat down with Laurie to ask her “what sets New Life apart?” After 14 years of teaching, what drew her to New Life and what made her decide to enroll her kids?
Why Matthew, Class of 2010, chose New Life for his own children
Matthew Brocker, Class of 2010 #MyNewLifeStory #WhereAreTheyNow Matthew Brocker is a New Life alumni from 2010. With nine kids in his family, he and his siblings have attended New Life for going on 20 years. Now his child is enrolled at New Life and the legacy continues. Matthew started at New Life in first grade and continued […]
Identity and Self-Perception
How do you see yourself? How do others see you? If you were asked that question, would there be a difference between how you see perceive yourself and how others see you? That is what Sara (Class of 2019) set out to discover in her final project for Photography 2 class. She chose to focus […]
Building a Lasting Legacy
Paul and Sarah (Muyskens) Ofelt – Class of 2006 Paul and Sarah (Muyskens) Ofelt met while they were students at New Life Academy. After graduation in 2006, Sarah went on to study Spanish and elementary education at Bethel University, where she graduated in 2010. Paul went on to Grove City College, where he studied finance and computer information systems and graduated […]
Where are they now – Matt Nylin ’05
#WhereAreTheyNow highlights New Life alumni to see where they have gone and how they are making a difference in their chosen fields. Our Portrait of a Graduate list characteristics of a New Life Academy graduate. See how these alumni are making an impact.
At Camp Forest Springs, students understand what God did for us by sending His son to the cross
The start of middle school, can bring about new challenges and changes for 6th graders. In a lot of ways, 6th grade is a year of significant transition for students as they move on to more complex learning, their friendship dynamics shift, and they begin to understand what a personal relationship with Jesus is all […]
New Life Academy students scoop up multiple awards at the Regional and State Science Fairs
Every year, New Life Academy students in grades 6-12 work on 15% Innovation Portfolio (15% IP) projects, which are long-term, student-driven projects. Each year students will compete at the 2019 Regional Science Fair. A select number of students advance to the MN State Science Fair.
Shay Motalebi of New Life Academy wins a $1000 Seagate Mentor Award
The Seagate Excellence in Science Mentoring Award recognizes outstanding science teachers from around the state who find creative ways to nurture students’ interest in scientific research and discovery. Two awards are given, one for teachers with 1-10 years experience and one for teachers with more than 10 years experience.
New Life Academy students win Entrepreneur Shark Tank Competition
New Life Academy students in the Entrepreneurship and Business Consulting class participated in a Shark Tank competition. The competition was held at the U of M Carlson School of Management. Eight student teams from four private schools across the twin cities pitched their business concept to a panel of judges, “sharks” in January. New Life […]
Meet Dawn Kroohn, 3rd Grade Teacher, nominated for the 2019’s Woodbury Educator of the Year Award
Mrs. Dawn Kroohn has taught 3rd grade at New Life Academy for seven years. In a lot of ways, New Life Academy has become an extension of her home, and the people here are like family to her. “This has become more clear as I’ve watched my sons grow up under instruction and care […]
Meet Shay Motalebi, STEAM Coordinator & Engineering Teacher, nominated for the 2019’s Woodbury Educator of the Year Award
Mrs. Shay Motalebi has taught at New Life Academy for eight years. Currently she is teaching two introductory engineering courses for grades 9-12. In addition to providing opportunities in hands-on STEAM activities for students, she also supports science teachers and students with developing student-driven Innovation Portfolios (15% IP) and coordinating Tech Forums and STEAM […]
Shrek the Musical recognized by Spotlight Education
Spotlight Education, a program of Hennepin Theatre Trust, honors and supports Minnesota high school musical theater students and programs. Two evaluators, either actors and theatre educators or those with a strong theatre background, evaluated Shrek the Musical in several categories, including movement and dance, vocal and acting technique for ensemble, execution of the technical aspects […]
What is Cognitively Guided Instruction?
Have you ever uttered the phrase “I don’t understand how they teach math today?” Depending on the age of your oldest child or when you graduated from school, there is a chance you have said this. Math instruction has evolved over the years, moving away from rote memorization of just facts to focusing on understanding […]
Accreditation: what’s the process and why is it important?
It is an exciting week ahead for New Life Academy! The ACSI/AdvancED Accreditation Committee will be at New Life Academy from Sunday through Wednesday (Sept 15 – 19, 2018). We have spent the last 18 months in a self-assessment study and we are ready and confident that our collective effort and work will result in […]
Alumni Story – Abby Thor
Abby Thor, Class of 2016, is attending U of MN – Duluth, majoring in Marketing Analytics. She is also playing Volleyball for the Bulldogs. We visited Abby on Campus during the Spring 2018 to ask her about her College experience and how her time at New Life Academy equipped her for higher level academics. Meet […]
Art Fry inspires NLA students to be creative and see things differently.
It’s the start of a new school year filled with curiosity, exploration, discovery, creativity and problem solving. The culture of innovation at New Life Academy is inspiring many students to think differently about the world around them. To see every day problems and search for solutions. Not too entirely different from Art Fry back in […]
Alumni Story – Valerie Hohol
Valerie Hohol, Class of 2015, is finishing her senior year at University Minnesota, Duluth. She’s studying Chemical Engineering and playing softball for the Bulldogs. We caught up with her on campus in the spring of 2018 to find out what’s next. Valerie, tell us a little bit about how college is going and what you’re […]
NLA students earn blue ribbons at the Twin Cities Regional Science/Engineering Fair
Congratulations to Nancy, Nicolas, Bryna and Noelle for earning Blue Ribbons (highest level of excellence) on their 15% IP Projects at the Twin Cities Regional Science/Engineering Fair. Read about their creative and innovative ideas below.
Mrs Gina Kortuem launches a writing center with the goal of helping students become confident communicators
This past month, Mrs. Kortuem launched a Writing Center at New Life Academy with the goal of helping students become stronger, more confident writers and communicators. Inspired by a long line of students requesting assistance and her dream of having a resource similar to those you find at college, she set out to explore a […]
Handwriting without Tears
Handwriting without Tears® Curriculum in Preschool and Pre-kindergarten by Christine DeBoer, Early Education Director Handwriting without Tears® was implemented as a new curriculum in our Preschool and PreK classes this year. This curriculum allows our students to be engaged in learning crucial Pre-writing skills and helping to develop their fine motor skills at an early […]
Striving for continued excellence in lower school
Striving for continued excellence in lower school by Joanna Richter, Lower School Principal At New Life Academy we believe God has called us to pursue excellence so that we can bring glory to Him. This pursuit is a never-ending journey. With this desire we are continually striving to improve our educational programming and extra-curricular activities […]
Pursuing Excellence in Upper School
Pursuing Excellence in Upper School by Lynn Atkinson, Upper School Principal The pursuit of excellence is a journey. A journey of pushing into new areas, learning, adapting and continually moving forward. The pursuit of excellence at New Life Academy is singular focused on elevating the student experience. In the middle and upper school, we pursue […]
Dan Palkki, 5th grade teacher, named finalist for Educator of the Year Award
Mr. Dan Palkki is a current 5th grade teacher at New Life Academy. He’s been teaching here for 5 years and prior to teaching at New Life, he taught at Christian Life School in Farmington for 2 years. Recently, Mr. Palkki has been named a finalist for the Educator of the Year Award. The criteria […]
What are number talks and why do we do them?
At New Life Academy we seek to make math a purposeful learning opportunity for every student. During this first semester we have implemented number talks in our 3rd-5th grade classes. Number talks are short, daily exercises aimed at building conceptual meaning around numbers. They encourage students to visualize problem solving, calculate quickly, use higher level […]
Do not give in to fear, but have great courage.
Do not give in to fear, but have great courage. Elementary Chapel speaker, Mr Beyersdorf. October 11, 2017 In the Joshua 1, we read of the LORD’s calling on Joshua to lead Israel into the promised land. God called Joshua to be strong and courageous three times. This repetition would seem out of place unless […]
Renewable Energy – 15% IP inspiration
The following kits are available to power your prototypes with alternative, renewable sources of energy: Wind turbine towers, blades, voltmeter or LabQuest probes, light bulb, etc. Motors that run using hydro or wind energy Wind to Hydrogen fuel cell kit – for storage of energy Biofuel experiment kit Solar thermal energy experiment kit – heating […]
Fashion and Art Innovation through Recycling and Repurposing – 15% IP
Fashion and Art Innovation through Recycling and Repurposing – 15% IP Mrs. Bateman-Ek shared information about making textile, cloth and other art pieces out of recycled material, such as plastic. She is a great RESOURCE. See the PowerPoint. Mrs. Kalinoff has a large collection of fabric, old clothing, patterns, idea books, etc. She can […]
Working with Animals and Pets – 15% IP Inspiration
On Monday, students were able to work with animals as an inspiration for 15% IP. Guinea Pigs, Tortoises, Fish in Mrs. Tschanz’s room. Students can work with these animals any day for your projects, with your teacher’s permission. You can also make an appointment to come in after school. She has A LOT of experience […]
Architecture and Industrial Art – 15% IP
Mrs. Bateman-Ek offered a lot of great ideas and resources for STEAM/15% IP projects regarding “Green Architecture”, eco-friendly, energy efficient, sustainable and affordable buildings and industrial art. She offered examples of simple industrial art inventions that have solved important world problems. Please read the powerpoint and feel free to seek her help and ask any […]
Prosthetics, 3D Printing, Health and Hygiene – 15% IP
Dr. Nelson shared many project ideas related to human and animal body systems and behavior (see Mrs. Motalebi or Dr. Nelson for a copy of the document) Options for designing a medical device or prosthetic (hand, foot, etc.) was discussed Students can design and build a 3D prototype by using SKETCHUP to design parts and […]
Environment and Agriculture
Teachers and students brainstormed ideas related to using, modifying, preserving natural resources responsibly and ways to meet humanitarian needs. The following is a list of ideas generated at this session:
Robotics – 15% IP
Limited numbers of various robotics tools and kits are available through NLA Media Center for students’ use in the IP projects. Some kits can be loaned out. Students may also store their projects at school and work on them on their free time or during IP Fridays.
Rocketry – 15% IP
Students who are interested in rocketry can choose an IP project that involves building a basic rocket and making adjustments to meet various challenge requirements.
Physical activity and the effect on student performance and behavior in the classroom
I recently came across an article in Scholastic Teacher that discussed the importance of movement for students, throughout the school day. In the article, The Motion Quotient author Calvin Hennick states, “physical activity can have a hugely positive effect on students’ performance and behavior in the classroom”.
NLA music director, Cindy Martinson, selected for this year’s Music Hall of Recognition
Cindy Martinson, an alumna of the University of Northwestern – St. Paul, has been selected for this year’s Music Hall of Recognition. Cindy has shown herself to be a worthy recipient of this honor and the University is thrilled to honor her on September 29, 2017.
NLA student attends 2017 Young Investigators’ Summer Program in Nuclear Technology.
Justin H. is passionate about math and science. He is currently pursuing a college and career track that would involve both subject matters. His desire to go into a Nuclear Engineer career led him to the 2017 Young Investigators’ Summer Program in Nuclear Technology at NC State University.
Grace Killeen invited to participate in Hamline Undergraduate Research Symposium following summer internship
Grace Killeen, a New Life Academy senior, spent her summer learning genome editing using the most advanced method in Biotechnology, CRISPR-Cas9. CRISPR-Cas9 is currently the simplest, fastest, most efficient and reliable methods for editing genes. It enables geneticists to study the affects of altered genes is showing promise as a tool for treating human diseases […]
NLA students travel to Swaziland for summer missions
Mark 16:15 “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.” This summer a number of New Life Academy students went to different parts of the world to serve God and his people. These students have incredible stories and memories that they have made on their trips. God worked through them and […]
The story behind the organizer of International Club
Mrs. Rupp is an English Language Learner (ELL) teacher at New Life Academy in Woodbury as well as the International club organizer. We spoke with Mrs. Rupp recently on her passion to serve International Students.
NLA Launch Club powered by MIT
Alex spearheads NLA Launch Club This summer, one of our students, Ruicheng (Alex) L. applied for a club program through the MIT website, which is called “MIT Launch Club.” Launch provides materials and mentorship support to high schools throughout the school year to allow students to develop entrepreneurial skills and mindset by launching startups. This is not […]
Cheerleaders win championship in two categories
The New Life Academy cheerleaders attended the UCA Summer Cheer Camp again this year. The cheerleaders were the champions in the two categories that they competed in – Game Day and Extreme Routine. On top of the team performance awards, individual cheerleaders were also named All-American Cheerleaders. July 2017 New Life Academy Summer […]
There is more to a student than a test score
Minnesota has been in the process of standardized testing these past two weeks. At the same time, the US News and World Report annual list of “Best High Schools in the US” came out and it always sparks conversations about what makes schools great. When parents are searching for a new home, one of the criteria many […]
Military Appreciation Day 2017
For this spring’s Middle School Project Serve Day, wanted to try something different. We took a day to thank those who serve and protect our country by writing letters and creating care packages that we sent to a group serving overseas in the United Arab Emirates.
Meet Amber Kuiper
Amber and her family have lived in Woodbury for 4 years. Amber and her husband have 4 young children attending New Life Academy. This is their second year at New Life so we sat down with Amber to talk about her experience. What has your experience at New Life Academy been like so far? We have been […]
The greenhouse is the best place for young plants to mature
I will never forget the first time I stepped in a Christian school. Up until the time I thought I would be teaching in a public school. However, I walked into a Christian school and I felt the Lord speak over me, “this is where you are called to be, to bring my Name to […]
Can an egg survive when dropped from 6 meters?
Can an egg fall from 6 meters and not crack? This is the challenge that Applied Physics and AP Physics students were given this semester.
15 Percent Innovation Portfolio – Awesome Happens Outside the Classroom
15 Percent Innovation Portfolio – Awesome Happens Outside the Classroom Our children are the future. Today’s youth, Generation Z, are already one of the largest generational segments at more than a quarter of America’s population.
Get in the Game and Get in the Book – Fields of Faith
Field of Faith events challenge our youth to stand together, get in the game and get in the book. In a world that is filled with pressures and temptations, students are challenges to stand their ground, share their faith and change a culture.
Middle Schoolers, you are God’s Masterpiece
Middle School. A time of transitions filled with big and sometimes awkward changes. Physical, social and personality changes are all happening and sometimes by the minute. If you have a middle schooler, you likely know the middle school angst, energy, enthusiasm, humor, anger, silliness, and the emotional highs and lows that come with each day.
Elementary Student Council Produces Young Leaders at NLA
At New Life Academy, leadership is one of the three major foundational pillars, among scholarship and service. It’s a quality NLA wants to see implemented in students as early as possible.
Coding for Kids: NLA Students Dive into Technology
With the ever-changing technological advancements of the 21st century, it is becoming increasingly important for students to become prepared as early as possible to take on modern-day jobs.
Why Our Family Gives to Annual Giving
Kurt and Kathy Nuehring’s two daughters have attended New Life Academy since they were four years old. This past May, their eldest daughter, Emily, has graduated New Life Academy and the Nuehring’s say they have seen Christian education come full circle.
Kindergarten at NLA: A Biblical Foundation
At New Life Academy, Kindergarten is like no other program in the surrounding area. Instilling values and a biblical foundation in children from an early age is an important part of their development, and teachers at NLA work side by side with parents to form a biblical foundation with their children and create an extension […]
Senior Trip: An Example of Community at New Life Academy
Community is a cornerstone of life at New Life Academy, so relationships are among the most important gifts each student leaves with.
Graduation at New Life Academy
In its very nature, New Life Academy is set apart from other schools. We make it our mission to educate and energize future generations to impact their world for Jesus Christ, teaching students to use their God-given abilities in their communities and beyond.
What’s the Difference Between a Christian School and a Charter School?
Your child’s education may be the most important investment you make in your life. In choosing a school for your children, you commit them to an environment where their minds and hearts will be shaped for the rest of their lives.
Just Be It
A poster in my high school locker room said something like this: “Adversity doesn’t build character, it reveals it.” As I’ve experienced challenges in my own life, I’ve thought a lot about this old poster, and I really believe the concept has Biblical roots.
Innovative Learning through STEM-Inspired Maker Spaces at NLA
Our aim at New Life Academy is to energize students in their God-given gifts, empowering them to use their talents in powerful ways for the Kingdom of God.
Service: A Pillar in New Life Academy’s Mission
At New Life Academy, students begin learning how to live out Jesus’ message from an early age. Though much of this learning takes place academically, NLA aims to give real-life opportunities to apply God’s Word; community service projects make up a large part of learning outside the classroom.
The Dangers of a Front-Runner Mentality vs. True Success
An old friend of mine coaches basketball at a large high school. I recently asked how his season was going, and I’ve since been reflecting on his profound response—he said one of his biggest concerns for his team was, what he called, a “front-runner mentality.”
The impact of iPads in the classroom
Due to the generosity of New Life Academy parents at last year’s Auction, every teacher was provided with an iPad Mini and an iTunes gift card to purchase applications for learning.
National Honor Society Students Impacting Younger Students Through Tutoring
New Life Academy’s Portrait of a Graduate states that NLA’s vision for graduates is that they become wise leaders and discerning followers. NLA students are taught to live out their faith authentically and lead generously and boldly from a heart that bends outward in love of God and of one another.
New to MAP Testing at NLA this Year: The Learning Continuum
This year, MAP (Measures of Academic Progress) tests will be administered again to first through seventh graders in the Fall and Spring semesters. New to the bi-annual MAP testing at NLA in 2014 is a Learning Continuum that will help teachers more effectively apply students’ score data in the classroom.
Innovation Sparks in New Life Academy Classrooms with New “Bring Your Own Device” (BYOD) Program
Bringing new and innovative methods of learning into the classroom is a key fundamental at New Life Academy. With the technological advances of the 21st century, students of all ages are tech savvy now, and this is unlocking new ways to immerse students in learning at school.
12th Graders Start the 2014-15 School Year with a New Senior Retreat
12th Graders Start the Year with a New Senior Retreat NLA’s aim is to cultivate graduates who are authentic Christ followers, Spirit-driven individuals, accomplished learners, and wise leaders. To further develop that, the class of 2015 started the year out a bit differently than previous senior classes at New Life Academy.
NLA Students Lead at Lake Middle School Courage Retreat
On Thursday, September 11th, New Life Academy’s 11th and 12th grade National Honor Society applicants served at the Lake Middle School Courage Retreat, held at Crossroads Church.