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Gifted and Talented Programs and the NNAT Test

Gifted and Talented Programs and the NNAT Test

posted by Karen Quinn, The Testing Mom - October 2nd, 2013

blackboard girl

Gifted and talented (G & T) status and high NNAT scores is something that all parents wish for their kids. These programs use the NNAT for admissions and are often free and have accelerated and advanced lesson plans. Many kids do gain admittance each year to G & T programs. However, as more and more parents become interested in helping their children get that coveted place among the G & T ranks, competition for admittance to G & T programs gets tougher. Since these programs benefit the students in them so much, and because of their low cost, many parents are using test prep to help give their child a step up in the Gifted and talented testing world.

Using NNAT test practice exams and learning exercises similar to the questions that appear on the NNAT test are beneficial ways of helping kids hone their non-verbal reasoning abilities, which is the main focus of the NNAT test. However you do not want to push your children too hard. Pushing kids too hard for academic achievement can actually backfire, especially among younger kids who can develop anxiety issues with test taking. You do not even want to use the term test prep when working with your children. Make sure you start with kindergarten questions for the NNAT. Skills in the NNAT build upon each other as the test progresses up the grades thus even if your child is in the 2nd grade, you should start with Pre-K NNAT questions. This will build skills used in the NNAT in a natural way and will boost your child’s self-esteem!

For this reason, any practice NNAT test or other NNAT test activities parents plan for their children should be fun most of all. By making these activities less of a chore and more of a game, parents can actually help their kids learn and perform better on the NNAT test, without causing testing anxiety or other trauma for younger kids.


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4 Responses


Ps11 in Manhattan has taken upon itself to mix g&t and general ed students for various topics including math, and this for several grades.

Mixing g&t and general students for topics like math is essentially tantamount to unilaterally ending the DoE g&t program.

Is it legal for schools to bypass the g&t program they are supposed to execute? Are there any available New York City or state regulations, policies, guidelines and procedures on how schools who have custody of g&t classes are supposed to administer such program?

Since parents of g&t kids did not go through the whole g&t legal administrative testing and application processes to end up at square one, that is gen ed, would the DoE allow a transfer of a g&t student to a legitimate g&t school within a same district?

It’s up to the individual school to determine the G&T program and curriculum for students. Some gifted and talented programs use different curriculum while other programs use the same curriculum as the general ed program. It varies from school to school in NYC.


The question is not about the program curriculum followed but about mixing G&T kids with Gen Ed kids. Is it up to schools to decide to do that?

If yes, what DoE governance texts support the practice of mixing G&T kids with Gen Ed kids? If yes, are schools also allowed to mix G&T students with CCT or Special Ed students?

That’s ultimately up to the principal and the individual school. There’s really no standards set by the DOE on how the program is run at each school.

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