I entered Rohan’s room around 6 in the evening, naturally expecting a mess all-around. To my surprise, there were no toys scattered on the floor, the bed was vacant and sheets properly done. I felt strange! The moment I turned to depart, I saw my little tot right there. The untouched study-table corner, that had been baptized as the ‘boring corner’ of the room is now being revisited. Quietly sitting with the clenched fists on the open book, he gave me a grim look as my tee-hee reached his ears. A look that said “Mom don’t laugh, I’m studying”! I dispersed with a ‘sigh’!
The exam season is back. The countdown has begun! My cheerful 7-year-old has toned down, the wave of tension has struck him. He keeps murmuring throughout the day “Mom what if I fail, I don’t know anything”, “argh please help me”, “please leave me alone”. Well, exams today are a direct dosage of anxiety and frustration among the kids. If I ask myself, what am I afraid of? Is it exams, NO! Results, YES! It feels like I am reliving my examination days.
Being overly occupied with the studying schedule, we overlook some very basic things. It is not OK if your child is losing his appetite or is going to the bed late. Amidst all the worries, do not forget these utterly important things to appease the examination stress of your child.
As a parent, we tend to over-react and panic. We need to STOP! We have got to soothe our frazzled nerves. You might wonder why your child gets anxiety attacks at such a small age, the reason is YOU. Children are great imitators and very quickly get affected by their surroundings. Create a peaceful ambiance in the house for your child. Read story books, play some music and watch their favourite show for a change.
Eat! Sleep! Repeat!
A well-rested child is a happy child. Until and unless the child gets ample sleep, his brain won’t function effectively. At one point you can disturb the studying schedule but never muddle with the sleeping hours of the child. Likewise, a child needs to have a balanced diet during exams(otherwise too). I usually make Rohan’s favourite snacks that instantly cheer his mood. Make it a point to never miss a meal!
Give time to the pleasures of life
Instead of inducing fear in their minds, include games, movies and other entertaining activities in their studying schedule. The child needs a break too. This way the child can learn without straining his/her mind. You can take your child out for a walk or a drive to the market.
On my recent online shopping spree, I ordered a learning tablet for Rohan that is helping him out to bust the exam stress. CG Slate is a learning tool that embodies an amalgamation of ‘studies’ and ‘play’. Rohan enjoys studying with the tablet, specially on interesting worksheets related to the topics he revises.
Don’t hurry or worry your child
Today parental pressure leads to disappointments both in the child and the parents. It is unfair to keep pushing your child to work harder and harder. You should know your child’s potential and act accordingly. Instead of instructing them to mug up all the contents at once, encourage your child to take small steps while learning.
Let’s try and avoid making exam days the ‘I don’t want to go to school’ days. Children get attuned to qualities like confidence, persistence and patience while they prepare for exams. So, it is important for them to take exams with a positive mental attitude!
Your role is crucial and your guidance is inevitable in the education of your child. Only you can help him/her cope with the hassles in a limited time. So, rather than the 'need' to study, make your child 'want' to study!