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Let's Talk: Providing a positive environment for exam revision

21 January 2020

During this time of the year, many students will be feeling stressed about their exams. We also understand that parents too can be worried about how their child will perform, as it is natural to want your child to get the best possible marks in their exams.

  • Let's Talk

To cope with exam stress, students need a positive environment, and parents need to enable this. 

Things parent should do:

  • Point out strengths. Helping to identify strengths and positive qualities will reinforce your child's self-esteem and confidence. This should be reflected in everyday conversations with your child. 
  • Allow them to go out and play sports. Being active helps in reducing stress and anxiety, increases memory, improves coping skills and concentration. 
  • Share your experiences. This is the key to creating a deeply satisfying relationship with your child and putting them in a place of positive influence. 
  • Help them celebrate achievements. At this time of the year, any goal they accomplish is big for them, and they need to be praised and have the time to celebrate. This would reinforce their motivation and keep them working towards their next goals. 
  • Encourage them to stop worrying and enjoy studying. Most children need assurance that there is nothing to worry about and that there is a way of enjoying revising. 
  • Be there to help. Make sure they know that you’re a ready shoulder should they need to talk or raise concern. 
  • Keep them fed. During revising time, it is really important to make sure that your child is having the right sort of food. 

Things parents should not do:

  • Don’t push them for scores. This could be a big source of pressure and encourages unrealistic expectations.
  • Don’t compare them with others. For instance, siblings will prepare for exams in different ways so try not to draw a comparison between your children. 
  • Don’t tell your child to study constantly. They know when they should be revising. Maybe they are on a break. Positive conversation starters about the topic could be “how is your studying going?" or “what are you revising at the moment?" 
  • Don’t create a fear of failure. They need to know there is not one perfect plan but there are multiple ways to success. 
  • Don’t deprive them from going out, watching TV or meeting friends. Taking breaks would help your child feel refreshed, but there should be an amount of self-control on how much time is spent during these breaks. 
  • Don’t forget to give them some breathing space. Studying is important, but you don’t want your child to feel extra stressed. Give them the space to find their flow and revise in their own way. 

Remember, if your child is constantly stressed, worried, anxious, or unable to cope with pressure, then please contact us. 

Further Resources: 

Help your child beat exam stress

Supporting Your Child During Exam Time

Supporting your child with exams

BIS Abu Dhabi Counselling Team