In this era when competition in studies is high, students go through a lot of mental pressure. An increase in demand for higher ranks puts them in a race throughout the year. This pressure is at a peak when the exam time is closer. It is important to know “how to help your child handle exam pressure”.
Understand exam stress
If you are a parent, and you see some strange behavior child produces when exam season is closer or any assignments your child needs to submit to the school, please do not ignore these symptoms of your child. It may be due to stress from the pressure of studies. When you try to talk, your child may get often irritated or get frustrated quickly.
Though exam stress can help get better results, but not for everyone. Those who can not handle exam pressure in a healthy way can go through many psychological disorders and it may negatively impact their overall performance.
Learn How to help your child handle exam pressure.
Success is a lifetime journey
Very often, children and parents think achieving a good score in an exam is a success. It is common, most parents are not aware that success is not an event, it is a journey. Every part of success is based on planning, executing, and reviewing the outcomes. Many successful people who did not complete their academic education have also seen countless successful events in their lives.
Schools are there to help a child gain knowledge about different subjects in a respectful environment. School standards, studies, and exam preparations have based standard, which is followed worldwide with a slight alteration of curriculum or the method of teaching.
Mainly, all schools provide knowledge and expect children to gain what they teach them. Sadly, the only way to know if a child has gained knowledge during the academic year is by how much he/she scored on the exam.
The dilemma in capabilities validation
If a student has learned a particular topic well enough and exam questions do not cover that particular topic, performance in the exam may not be as good as expected. This generally creates a big pressure on the student for the next exams.
Most of the time, students comment at the end of the exam that the question paper was too tough and was not based on the topics they prepared for. This dilemma of how to validate students’ capabilities and how to give them a creative hand, has always been discussed by many experts.
A child’s happiness matters the most
Often times parents think, if children will work hard they will be successful, and if they will be successful, they will achieve their goals, and if they achieve their goals they will be happy.
With this thought process, they keep the pressure of working hard and scoring good results conditions on their children. This conclusively increases an enormous amount of pressure on children and ultimately exam stress develops.
Teach your children to be happy first. The happier your child is, the better he/she will perform in the exam, and you will see effective results. Happiness matters the most!
Be a responsible parent.
Generally, the parent’s expectation from their children is the biggest cause of increasing pressure on themselves and their children. Parents want their children to behave nicely in front of others, bring good scores in exams and look smart and active. These are nothing but mere parents’ wishes.
To achieve the parent’s dreams, what a child is going through, most of the people who are parents now have gone through when they were younger. The biggest sacrifice from a child is to submit his/her opinion, creativity, and freedom of thinking in obeying the parent’s command and alter own potential to the parent’s persuasion. In simple words, to do what the parent wants a child to do.
Help children develop positive habits
A person’s attitude and mindset are built by the environment in which he or she is growing. Parents are the biggest source of habits for their offspring who are molding a child’s outlook. From a very early age, children start adopting their parent’s behavior. It has a huge impact on a child’s psychology.
Your children learn from you, so be careful of every action of yours. Most probably they will adapt what they learn from you at an early age. Your positive behavior will help them develop good habits.
A parent’s ego is a big hurdle
A parent’s self-esteem is the biggest hurdle for a child to develop a creative mind. The majority of parents have this ego, but they are not aware of it. They cover this self-regard in the name of the child’s future.
If parents do not give up their dreams, they can’t develop better children. A lot of sacrifices are required, and the first thing they need to let go is their “ego“.
Most of their claims are,
- Children are too small to understand what is good or what is bad for them.
- If our parents had not shown us the way, we would not have achieved so much.
- If we don’t guide our children, how they will grow and make their future?
Remember, guidance is totally different than imposing your own ideas on children.
Children need parent’s guidance
Of course, every child needs proper guidance. But this should not be blended with dictation. Dictation means you are writing the transcript. So in this case you are shaping the future of your child as to what you think is better for them. On the contrary, guidance means, you are providing support and making an environment where children have the freedom to see dreams, imagine, explore ideas, and create what they think can be achieved.
You are what you think, similarly, your children are what they think. If they start thinking the way you think, they will become a photocopy of you. So let them think about what they want to be. Support and guide them to achieve their dreams.
Have a close look at your child’s behavior
When the exam period approaches, there is intense pressure on a child in order to produce good results. At this time children may develop stress and suffer from the following symptoms,
- Child Worries too much
- Getting irritated or frustrated easily
- Reduce interest in food
- Quickly react to any situation.
- Looks tensed
- Having sleepless nights
- Looks tired most of the time and feels like losing hope
If you find any symptoms mentioned above, do not ignore them, try to take quick action. Talk to your child and make an attempt to understand what is going through his/her mind.
Establish a friendly environment at home.
Let your children feel free to express their ideas. Do not cut off their ideas by saying, “you are still small to understand it”. Instead, if you think their idea is not in the right direction, discuss and explain why it may not be a good idea.
Encourage children to talk to you. When they share what is going on in their mind, it will be easier for you to address their concerns and what is going on in their mind.
Let them feel they are decision-makers
Let children feel they are the ones who are responsible for their actions. Teaching your children to make their own decisions has several benefits. When they make a good decision, they can gain the greatest amount of satisfaction and fulfillment because they chose it. “Says Dr. Jim Taylor Ph.D. in his article. When your children make bad decisions, they may suffer for it, but they can learn from the experience and make better decisions in the future.
Let the child have an adequate amount of sleep
Some parents force their children to keep them awake to study during the exam period. They are not helping their children, rather this act puts an immense amount of pressure on their kids.
An adequate amount of sleep helps a child increase concentration levels. It will allow their brain to function fully, the ability to grasp information increases, and they will be energetic throughout the day.
Develop the habit of physical activity
Physical activity can boost energy and increase alertness. It can keep children calm. When they are stress-free, they can handle exam pressure in a far better way. Let them engage in any kind of physical activity. Walking, cycling, swimming, or any kind of sport, all are effective in developing strong psychological and physical strength.
Do not scold them for bad performance
In the recent past, one of the school students tried to hide from their parents for his bad performance in the exams. When the mother saw the exam results, she scolded him and blamed him for his bad results. The next day the student ran away from home without informing anyone. This boy was found two days later hiding on the terrace of a neighbor’s building.
Parents need to know how to handle their kids when they get bad results. The exam is just one event, failure in one event is not a failure in everything in life.
Your child needs your support during exam season. Encourage your child to ask for help when needed, and be available to provide assistance. Help your child stay motivated and focused by setting small goals and celebrating their achievements.
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