Tips & Advice

6 Tips To Help Your Children Manage Exam Stress

9th May 2023

Children are under increasing pressure to pass exams due to the current Government testing system, which is used in UK schools to assess pupils’ attainment.
This week, children at the end of Key Stage 2, in year 6, will take national curriculum tests in English grammar, punctuation and spelling, English reading and mathematics.
We know the period leading up to an exam could be very stressful for children and parents – so here are 6 tips to help you help your children with stress this week.

6 Tips To Help Your Children With Exams

1. Make sure your child eats well around exam time. Choose healthy snacks rather than sugary drinks and food which can encourage low and high mood swings.
2. Make sure they get enough sleep. Allow at least half an hour between studying or screen time and bedtime to give them a chance to wind down. A good sleep will benefit your child more than last minute panicky cramming.
3. Make sure they have a comfortable place to work if they are preparing for an exam. Some children find it easier to work with music playing in the background, some need quiet.
4. Be calm, encouraging and be available to talk to them about any fears they may have. Talk to their teacher at school if you feel they are not coping and encourage them to share their worries with a trusted friend, parent or tutor to help keep them in perspective.
5. Remind them that nerves are normal and can even be useful to push people through a challenge. You can also help to reduce anxiety by familiarising them with the test, asking if they can see the room where they will sit the exam in advance and by doing some practice papers.
6. Exercise and fresh air can help burn off anxious energy and change perspective about exams (for parents as well as children!). Be positive and reassuring, reminding them that exam results are not the end of the world and that you love them, no matter what the outcome.
If you wish to read more insightful pieces that could be discussed with your children, visit the Talking Points section of our website.
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