NYC Kindergarten Private School Interview: Does My Child Need Playgroup Assessment or Coaching?

A client asked me today if her four-year-old needs kindergarten interview/playgroup assessment and coaching, a service offered by a test prep company. No!!! Speaking as an educational consultant who makes her living helping families succeed in and manage the stressful private school admissions process, I try to make my clients' lives easier, not harder.  Kindergarten … Continue reading NYC Kindergarten Private School Interview: Does My Child Need Playgroup Assessment or Coaching?

Big ERB WPPSI News: WPPSI-III Becoming WPPSI-IV?

When New Yorkers talk about the ERB for entry into preK, kindergarten, and 1st grade, they are referring to an exam that consists of subtests from a longer exam, the Wechsler Preschool and Primary Scale of Intelligence (WPPSI).  This delightful so-called IQ test developed by David Wechsler in 1967 has gone through several iterations including … Continue reading Big ERB WPPSI News: WPPSI-III Becoming WPPSI-IV?

ERB / WISC Workbook Now Available for 2nd – 4th Grade NYC Private School Admissions

Bright Kids has released the first workbook specifically targeting the WISC, the test required for 2nd-4th grade admission in NYC private school. ERB/WISC-IV Preparation Guide Bright Kids says: The objective of The Bright Kids ERB/WISC-IV Preparation Guide is to provide practice material to help children succeed on this test. This is for children entering 2nd … Continue reading ERB / WISC Workbook Now Available for 2nd – 4th Grade NYC Private School Admissions

Do NYC Private Schools Teach Reading in Kindergarten or First Grade?

Times writer Sarah Maslin Nir addresses a key issue on many prospective private school parents' minds today, when NYC private schools teach reading:  Reading at Some Private Schools Is Delayed. At some, often more progressive private schools, teaching reading has historically been on a more relaxed timetable, sometimes not until first grade.  In the last few … Continue reading Do NYC Private Schools Teach Reading in Kindergarten or First Grade?

ERB / WPPSI III Practice Tests? Bright Kids or Aristotle Circle ERB Workbook?

People often ask me where you can find ERB / WPPSI III practice tests. Two companies sell them, Aristotle Circle and Bright Kids.  The next natural question: Which ERB workbook to get? Aristotle Circle's costs $200 more, but is a little longer and more brightly colored.  Families I have worked with have used both Bright … Continue reading ERB / WPPSI III Practice Tests? Bright Kids or Aristotle Circle ERB Workbook?

Private School Kindergarten Interviews: Books and Crayons to Help Your Preschooler Develop His Fine Motor Skills (Handwriting)

At the student interview, private schools typically ask preschoolers applying to kindergarten and prekindergarten to draw pictures and write their names.  Many parents, seeking to ensure that their children's fine motor skills make the cut, seek out books and tools that help develop handwriting and drawing skills.  Here are some that we recommend to our … Continue reading Private School Kindergarten Interviews: Books and Crayons to Help Your Preschooler Develop His Fine Motor Skills (Handwriting)

NYC Private School Kindergarten Admissions Books

Dear Abacus Mom, Our family will shortly be applying to NYC private school kindergarten.  What books do you recommend? Downtown Mom Dear Downtown Mom, Manhattan and Brooklyn families we know applying to private school kindergarten have typically liked to stock up on the following books: Testing for Kindergarten  If you do everything Karen Quinn recommends … Continue reading NYC Private School Kindergarten Admissions Books

ISEE: Are ISEE Scores Coming In Low Again?

We are hearing preliminary reports that ISEE scores are coming back low for a second year in a row.  We are on the case and will keep you posted on ISEE news. Right now we are working with Manhattan families interested in strategizing last minute details now that they know ERB and ISEE scores.  We … Continue reading ISEE: Are ISEE Scores Coming In Low Again?

Little Kids are Too Sophisticated for Picture Books

Julie Bosman has a wonderful article in the Times today, Picture Books No Longer a Staple for Children.  Apparently younger and younger children are reading chapter books.  Bosman cites Pushy Parents as one reason for the trend: Some parents say they just want to advance their children’s skills. <One parent> said her youngest son, Laurence, started … Continue reading Little Kids are Too Sophisticated for Picture Books

Sick of Writing Private School Essays and Gearing Up for Private School Interviews?

What are you waiting for?  Now is the time to read the humorous kindergarten admissions lit novel, Where Does Caitlyn Go To School? This book is a great break after a hard day essay writing.  Even better, GothamSchools says, Where Does Caitlyn Go To School? is "a new comic novel that doubles as a private school admissions manual".   … Continue reading Sick of Writing Private School Essays and Gearing Up for Private School Interviews?