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How to help your child deal with exam stress

With exam season is full swing across the UK many children will be nervous, worried and feeling stressed in the run up to their tests. To ensure our little ones are managing any worry or anxiety they are feeling Carey Ann Dodah, Director of Curriculum Strategy at Explore Learning (a leading extra tuition provider) has put together some tips for parents.

Celebrate the effort

There’s lots to learn and revise so it isn’t always going to come easily. By celebrating your youngsters achievements during the practise revision and reminding them if they can’t do something it’s because “they can’t do it yet” is the positive encourage they need. Every step is successful and helps them to work as hard as they can in preparation. It doesn’t overwhelm them with talk about the results.

Avoid clashing

With lots of pressure on children to do as well as possible and parents to ensure enough preparation has been done, it’s easy for arguments to occur. Avoid accusatory language like, “if you don’t work harder, you are going to fail” and try to approach revision with questions to encourage your children to figure out what the problems are. For example, “what are your tricky spots” or “if you have 30 minutes to look at something today what do you think would make the most difference?”.

Take time off

Sometimes exam preparation can get a little too much, when your children are really feeling the strain they won’t be as productive as they could be. The best thing to do is take a break. Find something enjoyable to do and don’t think about the upcoming tests. Remember, a clear mind will work better!

Be prepared

There are always going to be disappointed children when it comes to exam results. But, it is not the end of the world and there are always options. Reiterate to them that they can take different paths, whether it’s a different school/college/university or the possibility of re-takes just be supportive and let them know there are always options.

Is your little one struggling with their SATS this week? How are you helping them manage the revision and preparation?


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