EVERYONE knows that tensions can often run high the night before a big exam, with nerves beginning to set in and take hold – and that’s just the parents.
In fact, new research from school experts at My Tutor has found out that 42 percent of parents have picked up on their school children being the most stressed they’ve ever seen them.
So, ahead of the upcoming GCSEs this summer, My Tutor – the UK's most trusted tutoring platform – has come up with a trusty list of tips and tricks to help make the night before the dreaded exam that little bit easier.
From offering a gentle distraction to preparing a hearty meal, these simple techniques could make a world of difference before their teens head into the exam hall.
Even though your teen might not feel like tucking into a big meal, it’s important they have something nutritious and healthy before the big day.
Ideally, they’ll join you for dinner, but if they’re already battling nerves, suggest they fill up on some healthy snacks, including carrots and hummus and fruit skewers.
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On the morning itself, your child will probably be feeling too frazzled to start packing their bag.
Instead, encourage them to organise themselves ahead of time by making a list and making sure it’s all ready to go.
Don’t forget things like black pens, rulers, calculators, water bottles and snacks.
The same goes for their uniform, too – if it’s laid out ready for them to put on in the morning, it’s one less thing for them to do in the morning.
While your teen might be glued to their revision book, it’s important to help them switch off the night before.
Although looking over notes could be helpful, it’s more essential that they’re fully relaxed.
So why not suggest watching their favourite TV show, or film together? Or running them a warm, bubbly bath to soak in and unwind and relax?
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Offering gentle encouragement and advice can be invaluable for your child as they get ready to take the exam.
Start by telling them that you know exams are hard, but you’re here to support them. You can also add that you’re proud of all the work and effort they’ve been putting in in recent months.
However, the most important thing to reiterate is that whatever the outcome, they should be happy with what they’ve achieved.
We all know the benefits of a good night’s sleep at the best of times – let alone the night before an exam.
Encourage your teen to avoid their phone and computer 1-2 hours before bed so that when their head hits the pillow, they’re out like a light.
If they’re still refusing to give up screen time, tell them to switch off blue light settings on their device to help aid sleep later on.
You could even suggest a podcast, meditation or sleep story as they head off to bed.
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TAKE A BREATH
As a parent, your main priority is supporting your child every step of the way – but don’t forget yourself.
After all, your teen will be able to pick up on your own anxiety unless you take a moment to yourself to chill out and follow the advice you’ve been giving them.
In this instance, looking after yourself and keeping your stress levels low also looks after them.
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