Tests Can Be Challenging, here is how
to help your child to prepare for their tests
Even though it is essential for kids to study on their own so that they can excel at academic performance later in education, there is no harm in parents helping them cope with anxiety while studying or learn more efficient ways to master school material. That way, you can help your children acquire healthy study habits at a young age and be more independent later.
So, if your child is soon to have a bunch of exams, and you want to support them, here are a few ways you can do that.
Organize a productive study environment
Is your child used to doing their homework in the living room while the TV is on and other family members are chatting in the background? That’s not the best idea since it negatively affects productivity and focus. However, the living room is not the only room full of distractions. Your child’s bedroom might also not be the perfect environment for studying – the background noise, the siblings running in and out of the room… all of these can seriously hinder your child from reaching their full academic potential. Here is everything your child needs for a study-friendly environment:
- If you can’t silence the noise, replace it with soothing noise (e.g. classical music in the background).
- Remove distracting gadgets from the study area, except if the child needs the computer for research or homework.
- Get a comfortable ergonomic chair, but avoid an overly cozy seating that could easily lull them into an unplanned nap.
- Let in enough natural light in the study area or install full-spectrum light bulbs.
- Provide them with flash cards or display motivational quotes around the room in order to facilitate their learning process and encourage them.
Establish healthy study habits
A productive study environment is a great foundation for future success, but what your child needs even more are healthy study habits. Work with your child to create a study schedule that suits them best. You should revisit that schedule periodically to make sure it fits your kid’s needs and abilities. If you make study time a regular part of the day, studying for tests shouldn’t be that difficult.
Make homework and studying a priority, but also allow them to have some free time. You don’t want your kid to be overwhelmed and stressed out at a young age. Good study habits are also go hand in hand with other healthy habits, such as a balanced diet and a right bedtime schedule, and that’s where you come in.
Help with materials
Depending on your kid’s age, you can be very helpful when it comes to gathering new information and materials. This can be something as simple as recommending a book about Greek mythology you’ve read as a kid or if you want to be really invested, try finding books and notes for high school or college students. Online resources like Think Swap could help immensely because they are the place where students exchange notes, problem sets and even past exams.
Find the appropriate study method
Sure, there are basic study strategies that work for the majority of students, but have in mind that each child has a unique approach to studying. Don’t let your kid become discouraged by the fact that they can’t focus in a quiet and encouraging room. Instead, see if there’s anything you can do or change to make them more motivated to study. Some kids will study better through play, some with background music, some will memorize information more efficiently when spoken out loud, and some are more of quiet learners. Encourage your child to try out various study methods until they find the one that suits them best.
Work on confidence
Imagine your child doing a test where it is required to mark the correct answer (a, b or c). Your kid has studied so hard for this exam, and thinks the answer should be ‘b’, but aren’t completely sure because there is a possibility of error. The lack of confidence can often be the culprit for bad test results. A parent can play a vital role here, by offering their encouragement and support. It is ok if the child fails or gets bad test results from time to time. We all learn from our failures and become better and more successful thanks to them.
Be the coach
How your kid studies is one thing, but how they will perform on the test is a completely different thing, as you may have noticed in the example above. Try to minimize the exam anxiety by coaching your kid to go over the entire test, analyze the questions, think them through, and only then begin with the answers. Manage the challenge of multiple-choice answers by eliminating two options, and establish the custom of reviewing all the answers before turning the paper in.
Finally, do what a parent does – support your child no matter what, and make sure your kid knows you are always there for them.