Of the many admissions professionals that I have spoken to, most profess a sadness at the state of testing and preparation that is thrust upon 4 year old will be taking the ERBs.
One senior level admissions officer admitted that some families have been found to submit their child’s application for testing under an assumed name, thereby ensuring that the ‘Official’ time they take the test won’t actually be the first time they take it.
While the views of these admissions professionals is admirable, they state that a 4 year old child should be having tea parties rather than vocabulary lessons, the fact is that the ERBs are weighed so heavily that parents with children that don’t test well are put under the gun to do everything they can to level the playing field.
Factually, if a socially well rounded, bright, precocious child doesn’t test in the 98th or above, well, they simply don’t need to bother applying to many higher end private elementary schools.
Is it any wonder that many parents find themselves wavering on the precipice of prepping or not prepping? They are putting their faith on the line that school officials will recognize and admire a smart, social child who has not generally encountered multi-patterned blocks and mazes before, and to whom a spiral is something pretty.
The bottom line with preparing your young child for the ERBs, academically, is to make sure that the are exposed, in a free-form and playful fashion, to a host of different tools such as those used in the ERBs, but hiring a tutor can backfire badly.