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P.A.L. Workshop Series from March – Gifted and Talented Admissions Process

P.A.L. Workshop Series from March – Gifted and Talented Admissions Process

posted by Karen Quinn, The Testing Mom - April 2nd, 2011

Those who attended the latest workshop in our P.A.L. Series got a crash course in Gifted and Talented admissions testing. We also invited reading expert, Dr. Marion Blank to share her insights to the anxious crowd.  We called in the powerhouse experts on gifted and talented admissions process, Dr. Janet Jackson Dr. Robin Arronow to answer your toughest questions.

We were fortunate enough to have Dr. Marion Blank be our key note speaker about how intelligence is measured in young children and how to aid your child’s intellectual development with reading. The huge crowd was mesmerized while Dr. Blank explained the fundamentals of reading and how the “exception words” to the English language are used 60% of the time.

Dr. Blank is the director of the A Light on Literacy program at Columbia University. She has spent over forty years studying how children learn to read and is recognized by her peers as one of the world’s top experts in literacy.

Dr. Blank earned her Ph.D. in Medical Psychology from the University of Cambridge in England and her newest venture has become a great resource for parents wanting to enhance their child’s reading skills.

The Doctors Are In! Dr. Robin Arronow and Dr. Janet Jackson amaze the crowd with their knowledge of how the G&T process works!

Hundreds of Parents Cram Into the Downtown Community Center to Hear the G&T Experts in Admission

Dr. Marion Blank from Columbia University and Founder of speaks to parents about her breakthrough reading program.

Michael McCurdy, co-founder of and NYC gifted and talented parent expert, instructs future NYC G&T parents on the "ins and outs" of the complicated process.

Parents rush to get toward the experts after the panel discussion ends to get all their questions answered.

We covered so much! From knowing the right time to have your son or daughter tested to the dangers of disqualification.

Dr. Jackson started us off talking about her personal history administering the exams specifically the Stanford-Binet and how the process works. Dr. Arronow laid out the logistics of the registration and preparation process and what to expect when the results come in.  She specifically stressed the importance of picking the right time to have your child tested.  For something like the ERB-WPPSI, which takes place from April to January, you will want to take into account the capabilities of your child at the time. And don’t forget about the OLSAT test and Bracken test given to children as young as 4 years old as the sole admission criteria to get a coveted seat in the New York City gifted and talented program.

“If you have an extremely verbal child, if they’re a child who can sit still for about an hour, and if they’re a child that has adequate fine motor control, you might consider testing your child in the spring/summer period. If you have a child who, developmentally, needs a little bit more time to mature, particularly if you have a bilingual child, you might want to wait until fall.”  She stressed that the developmental leaps the kids can make over that summer are really significant and should be taken

“Probably the most important thing,” according to Dr. Arronow, was making sure that the child is able to sit still for the duration of the test.  “Some private schools may push you to take the test in the spring because they want the WPPSI results back.” But, remember, for the ERB, “you will only get to take the test once,” so the decision is a very serious one.

With the Stanford-Binet, you’ve got a three month window and just a two month window for the DOE test, so there isn’t as much opportunity for variance among those two.

Dr. Arronow also warned about the dangers of over-prepping, child burnout, and the number of children who are disqualified from the OLSAT test each year because the proctor felt they’d had prior access to the actual test.  Scary stuff!

The next workshop in our Parents of Accelerated Learners Workshop Series will be held on Tuesday, April 12 and the topic will be “The Accelerated Learner, Part 1 – Parenting the Gifted Child.”

Register today for the next P.A.L. Workshop series on April 12, 2011 at 6:30pm in Manhattan (Tribeca).

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