NYC Gifted and Talented Program and Testing


Moms and dads share OLSAT test prep secrets!

Parents Best Prep Tips!

I want to share a bit of “inside information.”  Over the years I’ve asked New York City moms and dads to share their best tip for working with their child when preparing for the OLSAT and NNAT-2 tests.  Here are some of my favorite answers – try what worked for them when you are working with your child.

Here’s what they said about preparing for the OLSAT test for the NYC gifted and talented program:

  • We always kept our test prep fun and playful by going to Brooklyn Botanic Garden in Park Slope to identify shapes, colors, categories and names of plants and flowers!
  • We worked on test-taking skills as much as we worked on the skill being assessed. It took a while for our son to understand that he really had to listen to and remember the questions being asked and that the pictures represented answer choices.  We taught him to listen to the instructions, look at all the answers, and eliminate what was clearly wrong.
  • At first, my son could only sit still and focus for about 10 minutes; every day we added a few more minutes to our practice until he could focus for almost an hour! We let him set a fun egg timer each time we worked – he got a kick out of setting the timer and hearing it go off.
  • We spent a lot of time working on our son’s listening and following directions skills because that was so important for test taking. We were able to do this while riding the 7 train from Flushing Queens into the city. He loved figuring out which train went where and how long it would take to get from Queens to the Upper East Side.
  • When questions were hard for my daughter, I talked through the logic with her so that she would ultimately know how to solve each problem.
  • I often pretended to be stumped by a question myself and let my child help me.
  • We played “school” and my daughter would teach me how to answer the various questions with her pretend workbooks. I was a “terrible” student so she had to work hard to explain things to me 😉
  • We did a bit of prep every day over a long period of time – just a little bit each day made a big difference. We saw lots of improvement over time.
  • During “Family Fun Time,” we had father-son competitions or contests between siblings using your questions, which my kids loved.
  • We played against each other – Every right answer would earn a point. Whoever got 30 points first won the game.  I made sure to answer some questions wrong, so my son would always win.  He loved correcting me when I made mistakes!

Keep the lessons fresh and fun is the big tip when preparing your son or daughter for the OLSAT test!

Of course, you can come up with your own to make sure you keep the lessons fresh and fun when preparing for the OLSAT test with your talented tot entering the NYC G&T program!



OLSAT test verbal and non-verbal skills
August 8, 2017, 9:54 am
Filed under: OLSAT Test, testing mom | Tags: , ,

The OLSAT test assesses both verbal and nonverbal skills.

Here is how it breaks down. Keep in mind, for the NYC G&T test they only test for the verbal portion of the test not the nonverbal piece. The nonverbal portion of the G&T test is calculated via the NNAT-2 test.

  • Verbal Comprehension

    • Following directions,
    • Antonyms,
    • Sentence arrangement,
    • Sentence completion
  • Verbal Reasoning

    • Logical selection,
    • Verbal analogies, V
    • Verbal classification,
    • Inference
  • Pictorial Reasoning

    • Picture classification
    • Picture analogies
    • Picture series
  • Figural Reasoning

    • Figural classification,
    • Figural analogies,
    • Figure series
  • Quantitative Reasoning (for Levels E, F and G) –

    • Number series,
    • Numeric inference,
    • Number matrix

The OLSAT test is for students in Grades K-12

Even though in NYC it’s only administered for pre-K to 2nd grade students for the gifted and talented test the exam is given across the country through high school.

Pre-K and kindergarten students are tested with Level A, first graders are tested with Level B, second graders are tested with Level C, third graders get Level D, fourth and fifth graders get level E, and students from sixth to eighth grade take level F.  High school students will take level G.   Levels A and B are read aloud to students, as is part of Level C.  Between testing and administration, it takes 50 minutes to an hour for a student to take the OLSAT test.  At the 3rd grade level and above, students get 40 minutes to take the test.  It may take a little longer when the teacher reads questions to students at the lower levels.  The chart on the right shows the different skills assessed at different grade levels.

Be sure to watch the short video for more information on the OLSAT test: