Manhattan Christian School

Partnering with you for life!

Middle & High School Departments

• High School English- Kim Vander Ark
The High School Language Arts program seeks to develop the understanding that language is a miraculous gift from God and encourages students to read, think, speak, and write creatively. Students will develop effective communication skills and respond to a variety of literature. They will explore different points of view and cultures, maintaining a Christian focus to language and literature.

• Middle School and High School Music (Band and Choir)- Anna Kalfs
Music is at the heart of the essence of praising the Lord.  We have 4 books in the Bible that are solely songs.  We are meant to sing, praising the Lord.  It is our God given instrument to be used in glorifying His name.  We work hard to sing a wide variety of music in our classes, looking at and respecting other cultures.  We appreciate all musicality keeping in the forefront of our lessons that music is represented in ALL cultures around the world.  We also sing a large quantity of excellent Christian music as well.  These songs are selected carefully to lift up the Lord in worship as well as strengthen and emphasize musicality and technique in our lesson time.  We learn excellent skills that are universal - we transfer them to other disciplines for the rest of our lives.  Reading music, playing music and learning about the many facets of music is critical to the well roundedness of our students.  We insist on music being a large part of our lives and we enjoy its benefits and give thanks to God for this!

• High School Bible – Kim Vander Ark / Nate TeSlaa
Subjects studied in Bible class are presented practically and deal with issues the students are facing. For example, covering setting appropriate boundaries between parents and students, students and classmates, students and boy/girlfriends, and between students and God. We also assist students in overcoming objections non-believers may have about the Christian Faith.

• High School Science- Bree Leep
In studying various science disciplines, we strive to see God’s handiwork in all of His creation from the smallest microscopic organism in biology to the grandeur of the heavens in astronomy. By uncovering the layers of complexity within all of creation, students are encouraged to see not only the beauty, but also the order, the symmetry, and the attention to every detail in all that God has made.

 High School Math - Kurt Kimm
At Manhattan Christian we believe that beyond training for a specific job set, the study of mathematics helps us in our understanding of how things in the world and universe work, thus giving us another way of seeing the greatness our God and Creator. God is a God of order, and mathematics provides order and structure in the problem-solving process. We see things in mathematics that appear to be chaotic, but as we go deeper, we find order. It is our goal to not only provide students with the mathematical skills they need to succeed in specific job fields, but also to provide them with a better understanding of God and the world He has placed us in.


High School Social Studies - Nate TeSlaa
In social studies the major theme is "God is sovereign."  I teach my students that the events of history are under the direct control of our God and Father.  In world history we start at the creation of the world. We look at different theories of creation and discuss the world-wide flood.  In US History we look at major events in the forming of the modern American state.  We look at God’s hand in major events.  We also talk about the ethical implications of major issues that the US has dealt with in the recent past.  In Government we discuss the implications of Christians sitting around and not paying attention to what is going on in the country.  I instruct the students that Christians need to be involved in every level of government.


• Computer Technology / Business - Jill Ayers
Jill Ayers, Technology Director and teacher, prepares our students with computer skills, research skills, and training to approach technology though a Christian lens. “Students need to be able to analyze information they find online, “she says. “They need to be able to measure information for truth and accuracy. As Christians, they must be taught how to be safe and responsible cyber-citizens. It’s more than just the ‘how to.’ We are preparing our students to use technology as a tool. We are helping our students practice creative problem solving with constantly emerging applications. We are preparing our students for kingdom work in the 21st century.

Middle School and High School Spanish- Madeline Wesselius

The Spanish program studies the language, history, and culture of the Spanish-speaking communities through the lens of a Christian world view. Learning a language not only allows us to communicate with others, but also gives us a unique opportunity to experience the beauty and diversity of God’s creation. Through language, we can build relationships with people across the globe - promoting understanding, growing in respect, and encouraging one another in the faith. 

• Middle School and High School Art- Kelly Swanson
The MCS Art Department encourages students to explore the gifts that God has given them through the visual arts. Middle School students explore a variety of media focusing on using the elements and principles of art to create their work. High School students expand on what has been learned in Middle School and have the opportunity to choose the media area they prefer, example: Crafts, Ceramics, Painting, or Drawing, we also offer an Art Appreciation class. No matter what the subject matter (landscape, portrait, abstract, etc.) we do all with our worldview centered on Christ. Our belief is that we are all creative beings made in the image of our creator and should have the opportunity to nourish this gift.

Middle School Language Arts - Marylou Sytsma
The middle school language arts program seeks to engage students with language through literature, spelling, vocabulary development, writing, and grammar in order to demonstrate what a special gift God has given us in language. We focus on learning about many types of literature to see the creativity that God has given each and every person, and students learn to read, write, think, and speak creatively.

Middle School History - Marylou Sytsma
In seventh grade history, we seek to see how God has worked throughout history, especially Montana’s history and also in the beginnings of the government.  We see how God has given us organization and creativity in creating a government that has lasted more than 200 years.  Students are engaged in thinking critically about history and its components.

In eighth grade history, we seek to see how God has worked through United States history up through the Civil War.  Students learn to engage the material and think about history from all points of view in order to form a well-rounded understanding of history.  Students are engaged in thinking critically about history and its components.

Middle School Math & Science - Chris Straatman

The Middle School Math and Science courses seek to engage students in learning more about God through his creation.  In math class the students are encouraged to see the order that God has instilled in our world through numbers, shapes, and processes.  They also are encouraged to use their numbers to glorify God, by being honest with the information that they are given.  In science classes the students seek to understand God through his creation while studying Earth, Life, and Physical Sciences.  They are able to see God’s magnificent power through processes such as earthquakes and volcanoes along with the chemistry of everyday physics processes and chemical reactions.  Students are encouraged to see God in the details when studying the intricacies of the cell and genetics along with His design of the atom. We encourage the students to use their knowledge in ways that Glorify God and can show others His awesome power.