NYC Gifted and Talented Program and Testing


Hunter College Elementary Test Prep Tips
April 5, 2019, 2:10 pm
Filed under: hunter elementary gifted talented, Stanford-Binet | Tags:

Hunter College Elementary School application process begins in August!

Hunter College Elementary is not a public school and not part of the NYC DOE (Dept. of Education). That’s what I call fake news. It’s actually closer to being a tuition free private school kindergarten through high school or possibly a charter school since the money comes from New York State.  The teachers at Hunter don’t have to follow common core curriculum, and in many cases the kids don’t have to take the state ELA and math tests.

Going into kindergarten, the child needs to be a Manhattan resident to apply at the kindergarten. Some people may say, “I know a child from Brooklyn or Staten Island that attends Hunter”.  In this case, the child must have gotten admitted in 7th grade since it opens to all boroughs at that point.

Here are some scary numbers. Over 3,000 4-year-olds take the Stanford-Binet test to qualify for Round 2, out of that number Hunter takes 250-300 lucky students who get into the 2nd round. In the end, only 25 girls and 25 boys make the cut (along with 12 and 12 on the wait lists). Hunter only has a wait list until second grade and there many cases of kids making into the program off the the wait list.  If your child is on the waitlist don’t give up hope, you may end up getting that call so make sure you answer your phone!

Here are the details on the test given to make it to Round 2:

  • Hunter administers a modified version of the Stanford-Binet V (IQ test).
  • There are different components to the test and the psychologist assesses many abilities for every child.
  • The test is given in a one-on-one setting in the licensed psychologist’s private office. These are pre-selected by Hunter and you’ll receive a list of 5 to select from when you sign-up your child for the Stanford-Binet.
  • This test does rely on a large verbal component and it’s not a time for your child to shut down and not talk. It seems that the kids who do well on this test are very verbal and expressive.
  • Keep in mind, this test is only administered in English so it your child is bilingual make sure you really beef up the English at home.
  • You’ll need to make sure your child knows many general knowledge concepts. An example might be items while shopping in a grocery store or classroom setting.  The test proctor will ask open ended questions, not “yes” or “no” responses. This is why you want your child to be very expressive in his or her answer. The more descriptive the better!

Hunter makes a BIG deal about prepping for the Stanford Binet this is why you want to work on the underlying skills to do well on this test. Math skills and reading skills are important and the good news is that any prep you do for Hunter translates over to your child’s kindergarten experience. It’s a double win-win!  There are many visual components to this test like visual absurdities where the child is shown a picture and they ask “what’s silly with this picture”.   It could be something easy like a flying dog or something really tricky! That’s why it’s important for your child to pay close attention to whatever the tester asks of him or her.

Many parents ask how early should I start preparing my son or daughter for Hunter? Well, you’re probably doing things right now at home and don’t even realize it! Read to your child, play “I spy”, have your child describe things to you in-depth, etc.  For official prep you’ll need start at least 6 months prior to the test to make sure your child has the underlying skills needed for this test.