Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Business -

AS the grade seven Oc­to­ber na­tional ex­am­i­na­tions draws closer; the ex­am­iner this week is go­ing to un­pack some of the crit­i­cal is­sues with re­gards to tips for par­ents which can lead to good ex­am­i­na­tion re­sults. Why Grade seven? One might ask.This is the first na­tional ex­am­i­na­tion for a child since born which de­ter­mines his/her fu­ture hence par­ents’ in­volve­ment is very im­por­tant.

Note that . . . Suc­cess in school and ex­am­i­na­tions is pre­pared at home hence par­ents/ guardians can en­cour­age their child to suc­ceed in their ed­u­ca­tional du­ties by help­ing them study for ex­ams. Whether you are pre­par­ing for a spe­cific exam, or cre­at­ing good study habits over­all, your sup­port can make a huge dif­fer­ence in a child’s abil­ity to do well. More so, help­ing to cre­ate a stress-free en­vi­ron­ment at home will do won­ders for a child’s ca­pac­ity to study and thrive in school. Par­ents can play im­por­tant role to help chil­dren cope with exam stress. Not only child but also par­ents cope with stress when they see their chil­dren cop­ing with exam stress. How­ever, han­dling the sit­u­a­tion calmly will help you as well as your child to cope with exam stress eas­ily.

Sup­port your child The best way to sup­port your child dur­ing the stress of re­vi­sion and ex­ams is to make home life as calm and pleas­ant as pos­si­ble. It helps if other mem­bers of the house­hold are aware that your child may be un­der pres­sure and that al­lowance should be made for this.

Try not to nag or make too many de­mands on your child dur­ing exam prepa­ra­tion time. Ar­gu­ments are counter-pro­duc­tive and will only add un­nec­es­sary stress and dis­tract from re­vi­sion.

Some chil­dren are 'bribed' to do well in ex­ams and are of­fered cash or gifts to achieve good grades. But bribery is not a good idea as it im­plies that the only worth­while re­ward for hard work is money and that you don’t trust your child to work hard. Neg­a­tive mes­sages like th­ese will af­fect your child’s sense of self-worth.

En­cour­age your child to do well for his or her own sake rather than for money or to please you. Ex­plain that ex­ams are not an end in them­selves but a gate­way to the next key stage of life. Good re­sults are them­selves the best re­ward for hard work and will make your child proud of his or her achieve­ments.

Make sure your child knows you are in­ter­ested in their work and that you'll be proud if they do well. Al­though bribery is not ad­vis­able, it is fine to pro­vide small treats by way of en­cour­age­ment - per­haps a piece of cake or some bis­cuits af­ter a chunk of re­vi­sion had been com­pleted. The end of ex­ams can be cel­e­brated with a treat that ev­ery­one can look for­ward to.

Pos­i­tive At­ti­tude Help your child to ab­sorb pos­i­tive at­ti­tude if he or she is scared of ex­ams. Pos­i­tive at­ti­tude will make your child con­fi­dent and help to re­duce exam stress. How­ever, make sure that your child is not over­con­fi­dent dur­ing ex­ams. Keep proper track in ad­vance to make sure that your child has learnt ev­ery­thing prop­erly be­fore ex­ams to avoid exam stress.

Watch for signs of frus­tra­tion.

Study­ing can be hard work for kids, and that’s a fact; how­ever you do not want to push them past their lim­its. If your child be­comes vis­i­bly ag­i­tated, very frus­trated, or seems over­whelmed, it may be time to take a break. Your child will learn bet­ter if they keep stress lev­els low.

The bet­ter you are able to keep calm and com­mu­ni­cate with your frus­trated child, the bet­ter you can help them move through it. Try ask­ing them what they find so dif­fi­cult about this task. If they are able to iso­late a prob­lem, you may be able to help them more ef­fec­tively Pro­vide right nu­tri­tion

Make sure that you pro­vide right nu­tri­tion to your child. Many a times par­ents tend to give what­ever their child would like to eat dur­ing exam prepa­ra­tion. Such food stuffs in­clude chips, piz­zas, burg­ers, cakes etc. In­stead of pro­vid­ing your child with fast food dur­ing this pe­riod, try to make sure that your child is hav­ing a bal­anced diet is very im­por­tant and it is a proved fact that right diet can help child to do well in ex­ams.

Keep fam­ily prob­lems away If you have any dif­fer­ences with your fam­ily mem­bers or spouse, try to keep it away. Do not fight in front of your child at least dur­ing this pe­riod. Such things can in­crease stress level of your child and make it dif­fi­cult for him to cope with exam stress.

Avoid putting pres­sure and yelling Do not yell or shout at your child if he or she is not able to solve all re­vi­sion ques­tions or has done some mis­take. Try to sup­port your child as much as you can so that the exam stress does not af­fect the per­for­mance. At the same time, shout­ing and yelling at your child may have long term ef­fects which is not good for child de­vel­op­ment. At the same time, avoid putting pres­sure on your child to study hard day and night. How­ever, do not stop mo­ti­vat­ing your child to study hard. Do not for­get that there is huge dif­fer­ence be­tween mo­ti­vat­ing and pres­suris­ing the child.

In this way you can play an im­por­tant role in help­ing your child to cope with exam stress. Do not for­get to re­ward your child when he or she per­forms well and scores good marks. Re­mem­ber, noth­ing is as im­por­tant as your love, care and sup­port for your child.

For more in­for­ma­tion or com­ments email pr.in­for@zim­sec.co.zw or What­sApp 0772148786.

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