Exam time. Often a nightmarish couple of words for many people, both parents and the young people who have to go through it.
It can certainly be a stressful time for all concerned – as a number of ‘Lifetimers’ know full well!
So we have come up with a few top tips to try and ease the worry that can envelop families at this important time.
The secret to doing well in exams lies in planning. Parents can help their child to create a clear revision plan and method of studying that will make them feel in control of their work.
Tips for revision planning include:
- work out a revision timetable for each subject
- break revision time into small chunks – hour-long sessions with short breaks at the end of each session often work well
- make sure your child has all the essential books and materials
- condense notes onto postcards to act as revision prompts
- buy new stationery, highlighters and pens to make revision more interesting
- go through school notes with your child or listen while they revise a topic
- time your child’s attempts at practice papers
The best way to support your child during the stress of revision and exams is to make home life as calm and pleasant as possible. Allowances have to be made. Your child may well feel under pressure and so it is important that you take their feelings into account as much as possible. Be vigilant, and watch for any tell-tale signs that your child is ‘feeling the heat’.
Try and make sure there are plenty of healthy snacks in the fridge, to provide good, nutritious food at regular intervals.
Encourage your child to join family meals, even if it’s a busy revision day. It is very important to have a change of scene now and again.
Energy and concentration levels can be revived if a child has a break, and gets away from the revision books or computer for a little while.
A walk, or a spell playing outside, can also help ‘clear the mind’.
Parents: try not to nag or make too many demands on your child during exam time. Arguments are counter-productive and will only add unnecessary stress and distract from revision.
It’s important to get a good night’s sleep before an exam, so discourage your child from staying up too late. And then try and make sure he or she eats a good breakfast on the morning of the exam.
Your child will be eager to do well at exam time, not only for themselves but also for you, the parents. Encouragement – without the heavy expectation – is essential. Don’t try and make comparisons between your child’s results and that of friends or siblings, or even yourself.
Explain to your child that exams aren’t an end in themselves, but a gateway to the next stage of their lifes.
Make sure your child knows you’re interested in their work and that, whatever happens in their exams, you’ll be proud if they have given their best. Try and keep the whole process in perspective. Your child should know exams are important but not be of the opinion the world will immediately end if they don’t get the right results.
Good luck to everyone!
- PS: Good planning can also help you answer the ‘big questions’ financially – and help you live the life you want to live, now and in the future. Don’t be left thinking, ‘oh, if only…..’ Plan and prepare. We can help. Give us a call (01226 208600). Let’s start to build a ‘lifetime’ relationship.