Resource: Nysmith School for the Gifted (Herndon, VA)
Website: Nysmith School for the Gifted (Herndon, VA)
Description: This day school accepts students pre-kindergarten through 8th grade. The curriculum cornerstones are mathematics and reading; students also work on computers, science, social studies, French, logic, music, and art. Students are grouped chronologically by age and move through classes as a group. Two teachers per classroom facilitate individualized student learning plans. Details regarding curriculum, tuition, and special events are included on the web site.

Comments: Contributed by: Parent on 2/3/2005
My 3 yr. old son is gifted especially in the area of languages. He started reading when he was 2 yrs old and now reads books on his own. He has pretty much taught himself how to write as well. Currently he is attending a Montessori school. He is in the 'primary' class which is a mix of 20 students between ages 3-6. This gives him somewhat of a range.

The materials in the class seem helpful for a gifted child. The problem is convincing/educating the teacher to provide lessons matching his abilities/pace. Their approach is to provide lessons when social deciplines have been demonstrated [a demension of child development not necessarily in pace with their intellectual pace].

I am wondering how NYSmith would be appropriate for him.

Contributed by: Davidson YS Parent on 9/29/2004
Children are in classes with age peers, which are at 2 or 3 different levels. Until 4th grade, math is in a classroom with age peers, and radical subject acceleration is impossible. However, beginning in 4th grade all 4th-8th graders have math at the same time and are ability grouped, not age-grouped. Because of the strict age-grouping, the school may not be appropriate for the profoundly gifted child who needs to be radically accelerated. The school will not provide recommendations for students who are no longer enrolled, even if the family has moved cross-country or internationally, so families who are temporarily in the DC area should think carefully about what sort of recommendations the child might need in the future and whether the school will supply them. My child enjoyed year at Nysmith.

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