Coping with exam stress has always been a big challenge not only to children, but also to parents as well. As a parent, you can help out a lot by giving your child your fullest support, and help him to pass this period smoothly.
Here are some effective strategies that highly effective parents use to help their child cope with exam stress.
Before the Exams:
- Find a quiet space for him to study without distractions. Do not place his study area near a TV or dining table. Make sure it is cleared of tops and other distractions.
- Make the study place clean and tidy.
- Find out what he’s studying and how his time-plan is working.
- Help him to create an exam time table.
- Encourage him to have breaks from study. The recommended time is to have 5 minutes break after every 30 minutes of studies.
- Make sure that his expectations aren’t unrealistic and that he isn’t putting excessive and unnecessary pressure on himself.
- Make sure that the weight of your expectations isn’t what’s causing him excessive stress.
- Help him to find balance. While studying is important, it’s also important that he take regular breaks, engage in some physical activity and eat regular and nutritious meals. Taking care of his health can be the most important thing you can do to help your child during exam periods.
- Encourage him to take some time away from the books for friends.
- Remind your child that you are always there to help. Encourage him to ask for help whenever he needs it.
- Develop some revision techniques with him. If he has problems memorizing, you can teach him how to create his own notes that is easier to memorize.
- It is good to get him involved in some light sports like yoga. At the end of a long study session, it can be really helpful in recharging his brains.
On the Day of Exams:
- Double check the time and place of the exam. This will prevent any last minute panic.
- Make sure your child wakes up early and has more than sufficient time to travel to the exam venue.
- Make sure he has everything he needs to write and provide spares for just-in-case.
- Prepare a good breakfast. Taking exams requires a lot of energy to think. Hence, it is essential your child takes breakfast before his exams.
- Encourage your child to go to the toilet just before the exam starts. A nervous stomach can result in a nervous bladder!
- Remind your child that once in the exam, he should read all the instructions on the paper and all the questions first so he knows exactly what she needs to do.
- Remind him to plan out the allotted time so he has enough time for each question. Tackle the easiest questions first. If there is something that’s hard, leave it and come back to it if there’s time at the end.
After the Exams:
- What is done is done. If your child feels that he did not do well, don’t let him torment himself by thinking of everything he did wrong.
- If your child is obviously not able to do well, or is not working as well as he can, remind yourself that there are other ways to do well in life without passing exams. You don’t necessarily flunk life if you flunk an exam.
- Most important of all, empower him and encourage him for his next paper!
Contributed by Study Grand Master.