Lets us help you if you are new to parenting….
We thought it would be helpful to give new parents insights into helping their child study towards sitting exams. It is never too young to start good study habits!
Here are ten tips to help your child cope with doing revision for exams:
1/ Look out for undue stress during this time of self endured time of pressure that your child will be encountering. Not all children are built the same and it is important to monitor fatigue. Ensure they eat healthily, drink plenty of water, get enough sleep during the weeks of revision study. Make sure they do not depend on caffeine, sugar or any other substance like energy drinks to get them through the extended time of stress.
2/ Ensure your child takes some time out to do some exercise every day. For example go swimming or walk for about 20 minutes to take their mind off studying. Make sure they see daylight and breathe fresh air deep into their and your own lungs. Doing this will relax their body, help keep their mind clear and will also help them sleep.
3/ Make sure that their body clock is in sync with the exam timetable. There is no point in doing all their study late at night if it means that their brain is not alert at 8.45am in the morning when their exam starts. Move sleeping patterns gradually, so that they are up and at their best when they’re due to sit the exam.
4/ Practice them working in three to four hour stints, (shorter if younger children) without comfort breaks of any sort (loo, drinks, going for a walk etc.) This will get their body used to sitting still and concentrating for this period of time. Get them to work on a topic for an hour, maybe two hours and then changing, so that their mind is used to that time frame, which may coincide with the first half of the exam.
5/ Don’t let them overdo it. Quality of study is much better than quantity. Cramming doesn’t usually help either. Aim for them to do eight to ten hours a day (for example 9-12.30, 1.30-5, 6-9), less at weekends. This is a lot for their mind and body to cope with. Those parents experienced at doing revision would say this is sensible but important to use this time wisely.
6/ Treat them from time to time. Read frivolous passages from novels or short stories, watch fun tv with them, have them take a long bath or shower. All in the aid of giving their mind a break and keeping itsharp to do the next session.
7/ Organize group revision sessions with friends coming over for say lunch. Ensure you can keep them motivated by them sharing ideas and concerns.
8/ Practice with them writing timed answers. Then return to them the next day and consider how they might have improved on them. It will also help them get their hand writing speed up over long periods of this type of training. Go through past papers with your child and spend three to five minutes per question drawing up a summary of an answer. On the exam day, these summary answers can then be done very quickly as they have practiced doing this many times.
9/ To have them get the most out of revision, have them come up with prepared questions to help their understanding of areas needing the most revision. The teacher can’t give you a summary of the entire course or tell you the exam questions, but if your child is having specific concerns the teacher will be very willing to assist in advising on the best way to guide your child to success. Don’t be scared to ask for help in coaching your child in this important part of the learning process.
10/ As well as going over the books and the study notes with your child, consider reading other works on the subject as well as secondary material that may have been recommended. It might give your child a different perspective on the author or subject and a better sense ways to answer more complex questions.
You could also consider getting private tutoring by a reputable organisation with a track record of getting results. An example of this is Dux College that provides HSC tutoring Sydney wide in all subjects from coaching on English to Chemistry revision classes.
We know how hard it is to be a parent and hope this helps those with children approaching revision for exams for the first time to be prepared as best you can!