Supporting your child during exam period
The exam period is one of the most difficult times for a child. Whether they are doing their SATs or A levels, exams and tests are always a stressful period. As a parent, one of the best things you can do is to support your child during this time. It is all about doing what you can to help reduce their stress, maintain a healthy home life and encourage them to keep up with their studies. Parents play a very big role when it comes to creating the right environment for learning. If this isn’t prioritised, it can lead to an underperforming child at school. Every parent wants the best for their child and pushes them in different ways. However, it is very important to understand the difference between supporting your child and pressuring them. High levels of pressure can lead to anxiety which will almost guarantee that your child will be unable to attain any information at school. Some children will need a lot of encouragement and reminders to get up and do their work whereas others just need their parents to help keep them calm, relaxed and reassured. It’s all about knowing your child. Here are some tips from a private school in Mill Hill on supporting your child during exam period.
Create healthy study habits. In order for your child to do well in their exams, they have to study. Everyone is aware of this. But how you study is what determines how well you do. Compare two students. One completes homework when given it, puts in a couple of hours here and there in the week to study and crams most when it gets closer to deadlines. The other has a timetable and divides their work out so each topic gets an equal amount of coverage and time to be absorbed. Their studies are consistent and always revised. Which student do you think has a higher success rate? The second one. This is because studying is done best little and often. Short bursts of revision with regular breaks in between are much more effective than leaving everything till the last minute which proves to have no benefits. Help your child create a realistic study plan and encourage them to keep on top of it. Keep them away from phones and social media during study sessions as it is distracting and won’t allow full concentration on revision. Remember to focus on the now rather than the later. Focusing on getting an A in the final test will only lead to stress and anxiety, instead focus on how much can be done in the present. Study sessions and focus are what will help your child work their way up to their goal.
To keep your child motivated, celebrate the small steps leading towards the exams. This could be a meal out with the family or a longer break than usual. Rewarding your child for their consistency is key in ensuring that they keep up with their hard work. Studying can be mentally and physically draining and means giving up for many. This is why lots of praise and acknowledgement as well as small treats here and there are important.
Ensure your child has a good sleep schedule. Sleep is crucial when it comes to the brain functioning well and is vital for learning. Morning exams tend to start early so ensure your child gets a good night’s sleep beforehand. Teenagers are prone to staying up late on their phones or studying last minute. Encourage them to put down their devices and to leave any extra revisions.
Nutrition matters a lot too. Processed foods lead to low levels of energy and brain power. Ensure your child has a balanced diet and is eating regularly. There’s nothing wrong with having a pizza at the weekend but ensure the majority of their diet is clean.
Don’t forget to always be supportive. At the end of the day, it’s the hard work that matters. Remind your child how proud you are of them for all of their efforts.