Helping Your Child When They are Studying
We’ve all been there when we have important exams looming, or a project deadline coming up and the panic starts to set in. Chances are your children will experience this feeling at some point throughout their education, and it really isn’t pleasant. Seeing your children stressed out and anxious about something you can’t really help with is an awful feeling; you’d give anything to take that exam for them if it meant they wouldn’t be so stressed out. Whilst children need the space to learn and study by themselves, as a parent there are things you can do to make the whole process easier for them.
One of the most important things to remember is not to nag them. If you keep knocking on their bedroom door every five minutes when they are trying to study, you’ll be distracting them and getting them frustrated. Don’t get me wrong, it’s great to be supportive; but not by constantly knocking on their door. Instead, make it clear to them you’re available to help in any way you can, whenever they need you.
A great way to help you help your child study is to be aware of what they are doing and when they are meant to be doing it. This isn’t to nag them to do work, this is so you can help the plan their time efficiently; which is often half the battle when it comes to studying. Some schools will show them how to create an efficient revision timetable but some won’t. So when they get their exam timetable, offer to take them to buy some new stationary. You could get them some sheets of poster paper which they can use draw up a revision plan for each week, and then pin on their wall as a reminder. Or if they prefer to use diaries, an academic planner might be better for them. By taking them through this process, you aren’t putting extra pressure on them – instead you are helping to facilitate their studying.
Make sure to include fresh fruit and vegetables on your shopping list, as a healthy diet will improve your child’s concentration levels. Healthy snacks will help keep them going through long periods of revising. Sleep is also incredibly important, so try and steer your child away from staying awake all night before a big test as this will hinder rather than help their academic performance. Obviously you can’t force them to go to sleep, but if they have planned their time successfully, you could gently suggest they get an early night rather than sacrificing sleep so they can study. Encouraging your child to have a break when they’re studying will also help them in the long run. Whether it’s having some exercise, reading a book or watching some television, a break is needed to restore concentration levels.
Ultimately, the most important thing is to be supportive but not pushy and reassure them that there will be light at the end of the tunnel.
Danielle is writing on behalf of Banana Moon, an online retailer who specialises in personalised t-shirts, sports kits and hoodies for school leavers.