Exams can be very daunting for our kids and stress levels are unusually high, even for us. Here are 6 very helpful tips on how to help your kids handle the pressures of exam week and get them through it in good spirits.
Even before you have them start studying for their exams, make sure they are physically and mentally ready for the tasks ahead. Don’t herd them towards their study desks as soon as they come home from school. Instead, have them freshen up, serve them a hearty snack and give them time to nap to recharge and revitalize their brains and their senses.
Make it your business to know your children’s exam schedules and make an achievable study schedule for them to follow. Ease them into studying for their exams by starting study sessions a couple of days before. A day before the exam, breakdown schedules to 1-hour to 2-hour schedules, depending on your child’s level of difficulty in dealing with each subject. Don’t forget to put in small breaks in between to give them time to recharge. Cramming is never a good idea especially for younger kids.
It’s good practice to retake previous seat works, home works and quizzes, focusing more on the areas where they had difficulty with. Do make time to make a mini practice quiz, consolidating all lessons to be covered in the exam. This will be a great way for them to review necessary subject matter and get them into the “test mindset”, giving them extra confidence by showing them what to expect and making “taking an exam” a more familiar experience.
What’s more important than reviewing and practicing for their exams, however, is making sure you set a less stressful environment around your children in this already stressful time. Raising your voice or arguing with them while studying for their exams will most probably just prevent them from absorbing the lessons due to fear. This may be difficult especially when frustrations start to weasel their way into the equation, but do try your best to stay calm. Remember that your children will pick up on your feelings so best to send out positive vibes. It is also best to communicate this to the rest of your family members so they are reminded to give more allowances towards your children who are studying for their exams.
The night before an exam, make sure your child gets a full night’s sleep–6 to 8-year olds need about 11 hours of sleep. And on the morning before the exam, make sure you feed them a healthy balanced breakfast packed with protein, carbs and fats. Remember, the brain will function more if the whole body is fully nourished and well rested.
The most effective way to help your children through their exams is good old love and encouragement from Mom and Dad. Remind your children to stay focused, read and understand the instructions carefully before answering any questions and to go into the exam with confidence rather than fear. Most importantly, tell them to just do their best and that it’s okay to make mistakes, that you’ll still love them whatever the exam results may be.
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