NYC Gifted and Talented Program and Testing


Tips and Tricks to Raising Your Child’s IQ

By age 5, most children in America will have been given some kind of intelligence test

Whether it is for private school admissions, NYC gifted and talented qualification, or public school placement in slow, average or accelerated learning groups most kids will be given some sort of intelligence test. IQ tests cover the 7-abilities children need to thrive in the classroom: language, information, memory, math, spatial, thinking and fine-motor skills.  Here are some of my tips for building these abilities from Karen Quinn, the Testing Mom.

Tips and Tricks on helping raise your child’s IQ!

Language

1.  Talk to your child about anything and everything all the time.  This will strengthen her language skills. Children raised in high-language households have IQ scores that are 38-points higher than kids brought up in low language homes.

Information

2.  Read concept books such as Richard Scarry’s Best First Book Ever or DK Publishing’s My First Word Book to your child.  Children tested for kindergarten are expected to know colors, shapes, seasons, fruit, farm animals – all the basicinformation kids are exposed to through picture books, preschool, and life itself.  If your child knows everything covered in these books, she’ll be ready.

Memory

3.  Challenge your child’s memory.  After you read your child a book, ask him to tell you the story back in his own words. Make patterns using Fruit Loops or colored beads, cover them up, and see if he can recreate them. These activities will build your child’s verbal and visual memory.

Math

4.  Inject math concepts into your conversations.  “Dinner will be ready in five minutes.”  “Do you want a whole cookie or a half a cookie?”  “Look how cute your toes are.  Let’s count them.” “You have three M&Ms. I’ll give you two more.  Now you’ll have five.” You can even bring up math when reading picture books.  “Look at that funny octopus.  How many legs does he have?”

Spatial

5.  Give your child blocks, puzzles, Lincoln Logs, Legos or Duplos to play with.  These will bolster his spatial skills.  You can also look for spatial challenges in Highlights Magazine, which always features hidden pictures inside other pictures, or read a Where’s Waldo book and let your child find Waldo.

Thinking

6.  Let your child solve problems. When the ball rolls behind the console, ask him to come up with ways to retrieve it.  When he can’t get dressed in time for school, let him think of ideas to get ready faster. Give him a voice in making simple choices so he’ll become a decision-maker.  Children who are allowed to think for themselves at home develop solid cognitive skills.

Fine-Motor

7.  Keep craft supplies handy and let your child create on rainy days. Colored paper, crayons, scissors, glue, glitter, paint, markets, brushes, Q-tips, Play-Doh – working with these materials strengthens fine-motor skills, which are simply your child’s ability to control her hands and fingers.



Debunking myths of the NYC Gifted and Talented Program

Well folks, the DOE is debunking all the rumors and innuendos floating around the city about the NYC Gifted and Talented Program. We’re here to set the record straight by debunking myths of the NYC Gifted and Talented Program.

  • There are two type of G&T programs in NYC. TRUE!
    • District G&T programs give an admissions priority to applicants who live in their district. These programs are located within district elementary schools. Citywide G&T programs give no admissions priority based on district of residence and all students in these schools attend the G&T program.
  • Students must take both the OLSAT and NNAT-2 tests to participate in the NYC gifted program. TRUE!
    • If your child attends public kindergarten through second grade, they will take the G&T Test at school during the school day. If your child attends pre-K or non-public school, they can take the G&T Test on one of several weekend dates. Submit the RFT online and early for the best chance to get your preferred test date and location.
  • Students must score a 90th percentile combined score on the NNAT-2 test and OLSAT test to get a G&T application. TRUE!
    • A student who scores 90 or higher can apply for District G&T programs. A student who scores 97 or higher can apply for District and Citywide G&T programs. Make sure you check out free practice questions from programs like Testing Mom! 
  • There is NO guarantee that a student will get a G&T offer letter, regardless of their score. TRUE!
    • G&T programs are so high in demand and usually there are more eligible students than there are seats available. Even at a 99th percentile there are no guarantees.
  • G&T programs give an admissions priority to students with siblings currently enrolled in their programs. TRUE!
    • If your child applies to a G&T program at a school that their sibling attends, they have greater priority to attend that program than applicants without siblings at the school.
  • Only current pre-K through second grade students can participate in the admissions process for the Gifted and Talented Program TRUE!

 



Helping a shy child take OLSAT test
November 23, 2017, 4:38 pm
Filed under: OLSAT Test, testing mom | Tags:

A few tips on helping a shy child taking the OLSAT test

In most cases you probably will not be able to go with your son or daughter into a testing room It’s very rare that you would be able to actually go in. There’s a lot that you could do ahead of time to help your child get ready and be a little bit more comfortable going into the testing room. First of all, you want to give your child experience way before the OLSAT test talking to people who are safe strangers who are going to be similar to the tester that your child is going to meet with, someone they don’t really know but someone who is safe. You can do that, let your child pay for something at a store and talk to the person behind the counter, or let your child order for herself at a restaurant and talk to the waiter or waitress. Any time you can give your child an opportunity to talk to somebody who is not you, but is a stranger who is safe, let your child do that.

You can also talk to your child ahead of time and explain to them what’s going to happen. “You’re going to be meeting with a special teacher who is very nice, just like your teacher, Mrs. so and so.” Connect the experience to something your child has done well at already. You can say, “She’s just like your nice teacher, Mrs. so and so and she wants to know what four year olds know. You just answer her questions. It’ll be fun, just like going to school is.” Helping them feel comfortable with what’s to come, that’s something you can do.

You might take her or him to a tutor and have them work with your child as well. In that case they’ll just have experience with what the tester is going to be like, another safe stranger. You can read the transcript from shyness expert Dr. Roberto Carducci, and he gives lots of hints and tips about what you could do with a very shy child to help them open up and feel more comfortable on test day.



“Journalist” from Alt-right Publication Attacks Testing Mom!
September 11, 2017, 1:54 pm
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Uninformed reporter attacks a company whose mission is to help children

I was browsing online and found this article from the alt-right Federalist publication. The journalist (I use that term loosely in this case) was in full fledged attack mode against Testing Mom and the way they market their program. This reporter was basing her whole assumption of this incredible program based upon a few subject lines and marketing tactics she claims that “scare” parents into submission. I really take issue to this attack with absolutely no statement offered from Testing Mom in the article.

I assume this “journalist” did her due diligence and asked TestingMom.com about their program and what they stand for. Although, I saw no statement from Testing Mom in this article. As the Testing Mom tag line states: Involved Parents. Successful Kids.  Yes, that’s what it’s about: Parent Involvement! Study after study concludes that regardless of socio-economic status IF a parent is involved in a child’s education that child will have more success vs. a child who has no parent involvement.  The journalist also didn’t even mention the community service work that Testing Mom does with underprivileged kids in the S. Bronx in NYC. They sponsor a program called H.O.P.E. (Helping Our People Excel). This program provides tutoring to these kids who are vying for a seat in the NYC G&T program and they had great results this last year!

The article insinuates (not so subtlety) that anyone who uses test prep programs like TestingMom.com (or others) is a neurotic helicopter parent who needs to take a Valium and stiff drink to leave it “up to chance” their child will succeed.  In other words, free-range parenting when it comes to a child’s education should be acceptable.

Many parents who live in districts that have gifted and talented programs (like New York City, Houston, Chicago just to name a few) have no other choice but to get into one of these coveted programs since their local school is sub-par. In some cases their child would have to enter the school through a metal detector and police screening. Not the type of environment I would want my 5 year old in by any stretch of the imagination. Maybe this reporter is lucky enough to live in an excellent school district or is privileged enough to afford some fancy private school for her kids.

Before attacking this company that only wants the best education for every child this reporter should do her homework. Or maybe she’s against homework too?

 



Signs of a gifted child
August 13, 2017, 11:06 am
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Do you think your child might be gifted? If so, keep reading!

We all think our child is the brightest kid on the planet (and we’re all convinced that we’re right!). Especially if you’re a parent in New York City! And we tend to have thousands of anecdotes to prove our child’s academic fortitude. You’ve probably known since the day he or she was born that your child was smart. But how can you know whether your child is “gifted” in the sense that NYC gifted and talented schools and teachers use the word?

Educational psychologists perform questionnaires and interviews of children and parents in an effort to determine whether a child is gifted. During this process, psychologists look for a number of attributes or markers that tend to point to an advanced child. In addition to taking tests like the Stanford-Binet and OLSAT they ask parents fill out a survey to self-assess their child’s giftedness.

Over 80% of parents who think their child is gifted are correct!

Here are some of the attributes that gifted children tend to have. (Don’t worry, gifted children don’t necessarily possess all of these traits, although they tend to have many of them.)

  •  Creative talent:

    If your child displays above-average aptitude for art or music, it could be a sign that he’s gifted.

  • Attention to detail:

    If your child is able to remember and understand the intricacies of academic concepts – or even things she encounters in her everyday life – it points to the possibility that she’s gifted.

  • Good with complexity:

    Gifted children often show a keen understanding of intricate concepts and are able to work through multi-step problems.

  • High verbal ability:

    Gifted children tend to have an advanced vocabulary and the ability to use it at a high level.

  • Emotional sensitivity:

    If your child is able to understand and perceive others’ emotions or feelings, it could be a sign that he’s gifted.

  • Good sense of humor:  

    Gifted children tend to be wittier than their general education counterparts.

  • Works independently:

    Many gifted children don’t mind working independently of others to solve problems; many even teach themselves to read before their counterparts learn it in school!

  • Reaches milestones earlier than other children:

    Among other things, gifted children tend to walk, talk, and read earlier than their general education counterparts.

  • Good memory:

    If your child seems like an encyclopedia, constantly retaining and reciting information that she’s learned, it could suggest that she’s gifted.

  • Likes collections:

    Many gifted children like to collect certain things that have something in common (baseball cards, model cars, etc.).

  • Has older friends:

    Sometimes, gifted children prefer the company of older children or even adults, as they find them easier to talk with and relate to.

  • Has good attention span:

    A long attention span and determination to finish the job is a marker of a gifted child.

Does this sound like your child?

Whether the answer is yes or no, don’t worry. The best way to increase your child’s academic performance and creative processes is to engage his brain on a regular basis with doing practice questions from the OLSAT ande NNAT-2 tests. Don’t rely on school and homework to keep his brain limber and his creative juices flowing; work with him after school and on weekends to expand his mind beyond the “four R’s” of traditional school. Brain teasers, online interactive test prep, and even conversations about complex topics or phenomena (for example, pointing out all the geometric shapes that occur in everyday life) can be tremendously helpful in advancing your child’s mental acuity.

 



Testing Mom and FasTracKids NYC launch partnership!
April 24, 2017, 1:38 pm
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New Partnership with TestingMom.com and FasTracKids NYC locations

Well, it looks like the folks over at Testing Mom are taking their NYC G&T program offline to the New York City locations of FasTracKids.  Seems like a great fit for both organizations since they are geared to helping youngsters succeed in school. It looks like the Testing Mom curriculum for NYC gifted and talented test prep will be fully utilize by FasTracKids teachers and students. This will surely help raise scores of all the talented tots currently enrolled at the FasTraKids locations sprinkled throughout the city. I reviewed the FTK program and was quite impressed with their array of programs they offer through their centers.

Gifted and Talented Prep Programs:

Even the programs above are geared toward G&T test prep they also help with the underlying skills every child needs to school and testing success with a full service curriculum.  This is why their program is so popular for parents of young children across their locations in Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island and Manhattan.

And if you’re looking for a summer camp for your talented tot they have that covered too!

Their Summer STEAM  Academy camp motivates all students to further their education in Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math through 9 different camp themes. Depending on your summer schedule you can do one week or the entire nine week program. You can also select 1/2 days or full days. Make sure your child keeps the momentum going this summer and doesn’t fall victim to the “summer slide” where a child can lose up to 4 months of learning unless a parent takes action.
Find out more about their Summer STEAM Academy.


More reviews of Testing Mom
March 28, 2017, 3:35 pm
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Parents reviews about Testing Mom

I’ve been doing more reviews of Testing Mom and wanted to outline their incredible membership offering they have for any parent no matter what your budget. The enormous offering is by far what you can get anywhere else online.

Here are all of the goodies you get with your Testing Mom Fast Track membership. This membership is geared for the busy, do-it-yourself parent of a pre-K student through 8th grade student. All of their online resources include stress-free test prep and online skill building resources.

  • Over 100,000 practice questions, online games and printables for the most popular tests from Pre-K to 8th Grade.
    • CogAT®, OLSAT® test, NNAT®-2 test and 3, ITBS, NYC Gifted, Houston, Chicago, state assessments, common core and dozens more!
  • Skill Building Academy for Pre-K to 8th Grade
    • Full access to 40 top educational resources! Your kids can learn math, reading, ELA, science, social studies, chess, keyboarding and much more! Over a $1,000 value included FREE with your Fast Track Membership. Keep the momentum high and instill a love of learning.
  • Kindergarten readiness, parent resources and more
    • No matter whether you’re preparing your toddler for kindergarten or a 5th grader for middle school, they have the resources and tools for school and testing success.
  • The best part of Testing Mom is one membership covers your entire household! You don’t get punished if you have more than one child.

You can start today with 100 free questions at Testing Mom.