Exams are a strenuous time, no matter how prepared your child is.
Regardless of whether your child is the hardworking, diligent kind or the kind that likes to prepare at the last moment, the nerves, the anxiety and, at times, the unwillingness to study are all part of a student’s pre-exam regimen. What, you might ask, can you do to make these exams less of a burden for your child and more of a challenge to look forward to?
Interestingly, a lot. Parents often end up taking the path that seems the most helpful: becoming the disciplinarian and controlling their child’s activities in the days leading up to exams. But what if you could do more? What if you could do better? Your role as a parent can stretch far beyond just ‘being around’ during prep time. Here are a few ways we recommend you involve yourself in your child’s crucial exam preparation days:
Enter your child’s preparation at the planning stage.
Several subjects, countless chapters and topics. Students today are dealing with a comprehensive curriculum that requires multitasking and a calm mind to do the same. If what you have done all this time does not involve sitting down with your child and figuring out how they plan to go about their school year, we suggest you try that immediately. Devising a strategy at the beginning of an academic year will help your child put their best foot forward and lessen the chances of an anxiety-ridden exam season.
And no, we do not mean a schedule set-in-stone or a perfectly jotted down study plan; getting a general idea of important school events, exams and preparation time will do just fine, for starters.
Be open to questions, doubts and queries.
In your life as a parent, your child has probably asked you more questions than can be answered. Being a major source of information for growing children can be equally exhilarating and challenging. You may not always have the answers, but always be ready to look for them. During exams, be open to discussing doubt & difficult portions of their syllabus and helping them solve their queries.
For the inhibitions, the self-doubt, reluctance and the occasional goof-up.
We’re gonna tell you the cliched thing: Be their friend. Yep, we know it’s not easy. Walking the line between being a parent and a friend comes with its own uncertainties. Know that children might not always open up to you with their issues. But the comfort your child can find in knowing that you’re there, ready to lend an ear, talk them out of their stressful times is precious. Find a balance between being assertive and lenient. They need both in equal measures.
Communication is key to building their confidence.
When exams are over, it will be time for results. Your child is probably pressured by expectations, both yours and their own. Maybe a little, maybe a lot. Your role in this situation is to make sure that the pressure does not come in the way of their well-being or their performance. An encouraging word now and then can boost their confidence, improve focus & concentration and give them the much-needed motivation to work harder.
Create a comfortable learning environment.
A setting most conducive to studying for exams includes a comfortable place to study, and a pleasant environment. Remind your child and yourself that they need good nutrition, ample sleep and a little time-off, even if exams are near, especially since exams are near.
Above all, know that these exams are just a stepping stone to the next chapter of their lives. Make sure they have an exciting time appearing for them and keep the worries away.