How to ace kindergarten screening (assessment test) at private schools?

This is a sample of questions used by a private establishment in our neighborhood as part of their KG selection process. Our older kid was subjected to these questions at the age of 4 years and 3 months, and didn’t make the cut. Hopefully other parents going through this process can find this useful as a Kindergarten readiness checklist.

  • Visual Skills
  • Identify different shapes using the right term. This goes beyond the basic shapes e.g hexagon.
  • Identify different colors including shade variations like light green, dark green etc.
  • Follow along as a pattern is made with blocks. Make the same pattern with another set of blocks.
  • From a mixed group of objects separate and combine like items.
  • Math Concepts
  • Count from zero to twenty and back from twenty to zero.
  • Count out objects from one to twenty in a random order.
  • Match a group of different objects to the numbers on the other side.
  • Estimate the length of a ruler by using a smaller object. The smaller object could be a pencil or own hand.
  • Identify the ordinal position of objects in random order.
  • Identify whether an object is placed above, below, right or left to a reference.
  • Human Body and Sensory Skills
  • Identify parts of a human body in little more detail like wrist as opposed to hand.
  • Identify the various functions performed by different organs.
  • Complete a puzzle involving a human body.
  • Describe how an item felt to touch from a group of objects. A rock would be described as hard.
  • Social Studies
  • Identify the sport from a picture e.g beach volleyball
  • Identify food objects including ability to identify a small carton to be milk instead of juice.
  • Identify different animals.
  • Language/Reading Screening
  • Alphabets/ Numbers Recognition
  • Opposites for words like loud, hot and happy.
  • Write both first name and last name.
  • Read a small word like 'tap' by phonically sounding each letter.
  • Distinguish between similar sounding words like sing - sink, farm - firm, wish - which.
  • Listening and Analytical Readiness
  • Repeat a sequence of numbers like 4-6-10-5-3.
  • Carry out a set of instructions e.g Get up - Touch the door - Sit Down
  • Follow along as the names of some kids reading books in a picture are identified. Then identify who was who.
  • Follow along as the names of four children and their activity are identified in random order. Get the combination right and relate each kid to his or her activity.
  • Gross Motor Skills and Fine Motor Skills.

    Books for Kindergarten Readiness:

    ResourceThumbnailISBNList PriceBest Price
    Get Ready for Kindergarten by Heather Stella

    • 2011: 978-1579128685 at $10.99.
    Phonics for Kindergarten, Grade K by Carson-Dellosa Publishing

    • 2010: 978-1604187748 at $3.99.
    Brain Quest Workbook: Kindergarten by Lisa Trumbauer

    • 2008: 978-0761149125 at $4.99.
    Kindergarten Reading Readiness by Sylvan Learning

    • 2009: 978-0375430206 at $7.99.
    Trace Letters Workbook, Grades Preschool - K by Brighter Child and Carson-Dellosa Publishing

    • 2013: 978-1620574447 at $3.99.
    Big Kindergarten Workbook by School Zone Publishing Company Staff and Multiple Illustrators

    • 2014: 978-0887431463 at $4.99.
    Kindergarten Readiness by Nancy L. Cappelloni
    • 2012: 978-1452241944 at $19.99.
    Let's Get Ready for Kindergarten by Stacey Kannenberg
    • 2006: 978-1933476001 at $5.99.
    Learning Resources Let's Tackle Kindergarten $44.99$40.01
    Melissa and Doug See and Spell $19.99$15.99
    Essential Kindergarten Assessments for Reading, Writing, and Math by Laurie Fyke
    • 2007: 978-0439529785 at $5.99.
    Learn to Read Kindergarten by Hooked on Phonics
    • 2009: 978-1604991789 at $59.99.
    What Your Kindergartner Needs to Know: Preparing Your Child for a Lifetime of Learning by E.D. Hirsch Jr.
    • 2013: 978-0345543738 at $9.99
    • 1997: 978-0385318419 at $3.99.
    Ready for Kindergarten by Sharon Wilkins.
    • 2010: 978-0310236597 at $3.99.
    Get Ready For Kindergarten!: 270 Interactive Activities and 2,158 Illustrations That Make Learning Fun! by Jane Carole.
    • 2005: 978-1579124502 at $3.99.
    Miss Bindergarten Gets Ready for Kindergarten by Joseph Slate and Ashley Wolff.
    • 2001: 978-0140562736 at $7.99.
    Brain Quest Workbook Pre-K by Liane Onish.
    • 2008: 978-0140562736 at $4.99.
    Scholastic Pre-K Reading & Math Jumbo Workbook by Hindie Weissman.
    • 2005: 978-0439785983at $8.99.

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    Last Updated: 06/2015.


      Carol said...

      Don't be so concerned ... our oldest could not have passed this test, which seems designed to see how "coached up" the kid is. His Palo Alto public school teacher was happy to have him, and despite some early struggles, he went on to get undergrad degrees in Chem and Biochem from the University of Chicago, and a graduate degree from U of Chicago in computer science. He does AI research for DARPA. We thought critical thinking and problem solving skills were much more important than classroom stuff at that age. Any age really.

      Your blogs show that you are probably doing fine by them in those areas.

      Good luck.

      C in FL

      ks said...

      Thank you for your thoughtful remark. You correctly guessed our concerns with our elder child. She is now in 3rd grade and every year has been better than the previous year with respect to her development...


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