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Beating the exam pressure: A Guide for Parents

With a month left for board exams, there is a growing tension among the Indian families. I firmly believe that there is a huge stress and pressure at this time not only on the students but the parents too. The parents need to meet the challenges of the tantrums of their children and spending sleepless nights thinking about their child’s future.

The results of the students will certainly reflect the hard-work, perseverance, grit of the students and educators. However, this does not undermine the role of good parenting ensuring a good performance of their ward(s).

As a school counsellor, I often notice that a good number of parents seek guidance only when the results are declared at the Parent Teacher Meet. Sadly, they do not turn up later to seek any assistance for better performance, henceforth. The role of the parents in guiding the students is very important for a successful career development.

It’s now time for the parents to move fast in the matter and take appropriate steps to remove the shortcomings noticed on the following guidelines:

  1. Physical Presence: It’s very important for the parents to be around the child. The children may not appreciate your over indulgence in their study curriculum but would certainly feel secured to have you around them  giving the child the satisfaction of not only being alone but also no disturbance of any other kind.
  2. Patience: Parents must be patient towards their wards to avoid any aggressive attitude from the child and ignore rude talks. Instead, they should focus on the child’s strength and inculcate in them a high level of confidence.
  3. Encouragement: Every small encouragement and appreciation at the time of pressure will help the child boost their self esteem and feel happy.
  4. Healthy Diet: Students often resort to junk food during stress periods. Parents must ensure serving them healthy food which keeps them alert and active.
  5. Mental Support: Not just the physical presence, the child expects from parents the psychological support for easing the pressure and giving short motivational talk to pep them up.
  6. Role of humour: The day of the child can be monotonous throughout due to study pressure. Instead the parents should add some humour to give a change in their environment.
  7. No Comparison: It’s a folly to compare your child with others as each child has his/her own level of intelligence and hard-work which can never be stretched beyond certain limits.
  8. Rest: Ensure that the students and the parents get adequate rest and sleep. Sleepless nights lead to inability to concentrate well on a task that will drive down the result.
  9. No nagging: Avoid micro-managing your child and give them a free hand in scheduling their study sessions. Remember that your child need not choose the same goal which you had achieved or could not succeed. Parents should also refrain from forcing their child to choose a particular stream for further studies just because he/she has scored high percentage in those subjects. “Three Idiots” and “Taare Zameen Par” movies are glaring examples.
  10. Friendly Attitude: The parents should always be ready to give assistance as and when needed by the child and make them less dependent on extra tuition classes.
  11. Unwinding: It’s vital for the children to give a break to study schedule and take some physical activity to boost their level of concentration.

Parents should provide a positive and nourishing environment for their children to be able to grow holistically and pursue their passion to live happily in the years ahead. Even a good hobby at times helps them to make a good career!

Sana Kapur, Counsellor,  Venkateshwar International School

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