Spring has sprung, and summer is in touching distance – but with it comes the weeks that strike fear among children and their families; exam season.
Whether your child is at primary school, secondary school, sixth form or college, the chances are that they will be sitting exams at some point in the near future.
How can you help to reduce the stress they – and in turn, the rest of the family – experience in the run up to their exams? Here’s our guide for making the next few months as stress-free
It doesn’t matter whether your child is sitting their SATs, GCSEs or A-Levels; for them, they’re entering a period where they feel perhaps the most pressure to perform than they’ve ever had before.
Look out for any signs that your child is beginning to worry about their exams; irritability, lack of appetite and not sleeping well are just a few key signs that your child may be stressed.
If you notice any changes, talk to them and let them know that they’re not on their own.
Get Creative with Revision
Gone are the days when revision meant spending days reading textbooks, it can now be tailored to how best your child learns.
Group study sessions with friends are also helpful to ease anxiety and break up the boredom that some children feel when revising.
Discuss options with your child and ask for their suggestions to make their learning feel less like a chore.
We know that what we eat and drink affects feelings and behaviour – parents find sweets and and other treats, high in fat, sugar and caffeine make their children hyperactive and experience
A balanced, healthy diet is important in the run up to exams, ensure that they’re eating breakfast, lunch and dinner – filled with brain-boosting ingredients such as fish, eggs, and fruit and vegetables.
Just like eating, sleeping is a necessity – especially when it comes to periods of stress. Studies show a good night’s sleep is vital for concentration, so make sure that your child winds down.
It is believed that teen’s need between 8-10 hours each night.
With family life continuing and the desire for our children to do well in their exams, it’s understandable that children can feel pressured.
Reassure them that you know that they’ll do their best – and that it’s not the end of the world. In most cases, exams can be retaken.
Praise and Rewards
Don’t forget to praise and reward your child after each exam.
Rewards don’t have to be big financial ones; perhaps you could treat them to their favourite dinner or magazine for a bit of me-time, or give them an afternoon off revising to be free for a few hours!
By Shelley Welti