Exams are stressful times for students, true. However, for parents also the month leading up to the exams and exam time can be stressful.
It is natural that parents want their children to do well. However, examinations are one of those that children have to do themselves, where the parent cannot step in to help them. While parents cannot help their children write the exam, here is how they can help instead.
1. Your Presence Is Needed – Your child might tell that you that he/she is okay without you and you might think that they will do fine without you, but in truth, just your presence in the house will act as a motivator, a source of strength and perhaps also force them to knuckle down and study.
2. Make The Home Environment Pleasant – Its impossible for a child to study when the environment they are studying in is chaotic or noisy. Keeping this in mind, ensure that home is a pleasant place for a child to study in. It would also be prudent to advise other family members not to unnecessarily disturb the child.
3. Be Supportive – Your child needs your support and encouragement. Be positive around them. Do not undermine their self-confidence. If you tell them (sincerely of course), that they are capable of studying and doing well, children will naturally feel like studying because they feel confident about themselves. Of course, do not overburden them with expectations either. You do not want your child to collapse under the weight of all your expectations.
4. Make Them Take Breaks – Some children are capable of compartmentalizing their study times to include breaks. However, those children are in the minority. Depending on the mental make-up of your child, he or she might work themselves into a state of stress where they feel like if they don’t study for long hours, they are not going to pass or get good grades. Don’t be happy that your child wants to study for long hours without even a single break. It is up to you to draw them away from their books and ask them to go relax and simply do nothing for 15 to 30 mins. There is a reason why study breaks are highly recommended. They give the brain a chance to recharge, and the body too.
5. Don’t Nag/Argue – Study holidays or exam time is not the time to have petty arguments with your child or even nag them continuously to do better and study more. The child in question is already stressed. And you too might be stressed because of the exams and your child also being tense. Having fights or nagging your child might only increase their stress levels and affect their ability to study.
6. Don’t Use Fear As A Motivator – While threatening a child into doing well might work on some children, what it does to a vast majority of children is make them all the more scared and therefore unable to do anything. Fear is not a good motivator and should not be used to motivate children. All it does is make a child anxious and increase their stress levels.
7. Exams Are A Stepping Stone – Sometimes, despite all your efforts and your child’s efforts, the results may not be good as you or your child expected. In cases such as these, you need to remember what exams are really about. They are not the means to an end. Rather, they are just a stepping stone to something else. There are plenty of people who made it through despite having done poorly. Maybe you too are one among them. And if you turned out fine, despite doing poorly in an exam/s, then there is no reason why your child should not do the same.
8. Keep Calm and Don’t Panic – One of the most important things you need to remind yourself during exam time is that : Do Not Panic. All panic creates is chaos. And if you panic, your child will not be far behind. Instead, keep calm. Panic on the inside if you want to. Your child is counting on you to be strong, because they will draw strength from you. So keep that in mind and keep calm.