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July 5, 2021

22 Comments

With exams just around the corner helping our kids to deal with exam anxiety is more important than ever.

Exam anxiety can have ramifications on your child’s performance but there are many actions parents and caregivers can take to support their children during this anxious period and make things a little easier on them. Here are some great ideas to encourage a greater focus on wellbeing for you and your family to help manage exam anxiety.

Formulate A Plan

Make sure your child has a plan. Being as prepared as they can will help your child manage stress when anxious thoughts take over. They will be better equipped to cope and can remind themselves that they have studied and will be OK.

Make A Study Schedule

Help your child break up their study into manageable chunks so they can allow time for breaks, relaxation, and downtime.

Find What Works Best For Your Child

Remember every child learns and works in different ways. Maybe your child prefers reading things over a few times to commit them to memory or maybe they prefer using visual cues. Find the method that helps them feel most in control and at ease.

Encourage Talking To The Teacher

If your child isn’t sure what they’re going to be tested on, or they have concerns about gaps in their knowledge, encourage them to talk to their teacher. Teachers have the knowledge and skill to not only point them in the right direction but ensure that your child feels confident they are studying the right things in the right way.

Make Sure They Eat Properly

Ensuring your child eats properly is important to maintain their focus throughout the day. They will not be able to get as much done if their body is running low on fuel or if they are relying on coffee or sugar to get them through. Make sure they eat lots of nutritious fruit and veggies in the lead-up to the exam and that they have a good square meal beforehand.

Practice Mindfulness

Practicing mindfulness will help your child manage their anxieties and stay in the moment so they can focus on the exam and the tasks at hand. To do this, you can help them engage in their senses and become aware of their thoughts, breathing, and sensations in a quiet room, without being distracted by any worries or stresses that are getting them down. Practicing mindfulness gives your body a break from any anxiety about the future and will help minimise the tension they feel during the exam.

Find An Outlet

We all need an outlet when we feel stressed, so helping your child find theirs is super important. This could be anything from exercise, to using a stress ball or even a fidget spinner. If your child has sufficiently prepared for their exam, on the day they may still find the whole experience overwhelming and when it comes time to perform, they may be distracted by their anxiety. Managing their stress and releasing any accumulated tension through regular movement means that they can focus on doing their best and know deep down they’ll be able to copy no matter what happens.

If you need more information during this time, ClickView has created a series of free resources to help give you the tools you need to focus on wellbeing.

About The Author:

Delvene Neilson is a mother, an experienced educator, and also the Head of Customer Success at ClickView. ClickView is an online education company that provides over 4,500 schools, colleges and universities with access to high-quality, relevant, and interactive curriculum-aligned video resources.

Championed as ‘The Netflix of education’, ClickView’s content is used by over 70% of secondary schools in Australia. New video releases are produced in conjunction with subject experts and Australian teachers and added to the library every six weeks. ClickView has been producing and distributing its innovative and impactful video content online since 2003.

Have you got a top tip for helping your child manage exam anxiety? Share it in the comments!

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  • I wish I had some of these strategies while I was going through my exams!

    Reply

  • a balance of good food, exercise, preparation and hard work and also relax time. Being available to talk to if they need.

    Reply

  • I used to get so much anxiety I didn’t even think I got my name right! I always did, but anxiety was bad.
    It wasn’t until I was at University that my husband said “if you fail, you can just redo the unit” that I felt less pressure. I always went in with very low expectations of myself so that I would either be pleasantly surprised or at the very least not disappointed.
    It’s all about finding out what’s right for you


    • I often find asking myself what the worst thing could happen? This helps with perspective and stops me spiralling. I hope I help my kids to see thei value beyond test scores so they hopefully don’t put too much pressure on themselves

    Reply

  • Oh my gosh, I remember these times. Especially during uni. I had to have complete silence in order to study lol
    I would highlight my textbooks then write them out on paper and try and memorise the whole thing for a couple of days then would make up questions and try and write an answer based on what I memorised to try and test myself.

    Reply

  • My son’s were total opposites when it came to exams. The eldest didn’t really care how he went because he didn’t really like having to study and always left things to the last minute. His brother however was the total opposite. He always needed to know what the test was going to be on and he would study every moment of every waking hour. I found the best way to help them was to ask them questions from their books, get them to read through the work they’d already done and impress upon them that as long as they were doing the best they could then we were proud of them no matter what. All we can do is be there for them


    • That’s a great strategy – you sound like a really supportive mum!

    Reply

  • My daughter is doing year 11 at the moment so this is a great article for me. I think sleep is also hugely important and something I am struggling to get my daughter to understand.

    Reply

  • All of the above and sleep. It’s all about balance. Making sure you’re well rested, well fed, in a good head space, and confident you’ve done the work.


    • I agree with getting the right amount of sleep and it has so many benefits on health and well being.

    Reply

  • Good tips! Getting sleep is good for re-energising too.

    Reply

  • Wish I had this advice advice I was at school. I think nutrition is SUPER important for mental health and would play a role. The rest are great tips too

    Reply

  • Good tips. It’s a good thing that exams are for slightly elder kids at an age they’ve matured to some extend and carry a certain amount of responsibilities, my 2 teenagers fall into this category.
    I’m glad my kids don’t really experience exam anxiety. They may ask here and there for help but mostly do their preparations on their own. Their reports say they do their homework and exams well, so I’m happy to leave that responsibility in their hands.
    In regards to “Formulate a Plan” and “Make a Study schedule”; when I was a high school kid I did this and it worked for me, but we’re all different. My kids don’t really work with a plan and schedule but keep an eye on what they need to do. I may ask how they go with it, but it’s up to them to include me in the details; I surely wouldn’t force myself on them.


    • They also plan and prepare at school and I found that the teachers are really supportive with this

    Reply

  • Really great tips. I never want to imagine my sons having anxiety about exams, my heart will break ugh.

    Reply

  • I do wish the word anxiety wasn’t thrown around so much.
    I try not to put pressure on my kids but I do encourage them through positive reinforcement

    Reply

  • I try not to put pressure on my kids: I tell them to have fun and do their best in exams, and we’ll be happy.


    • Yes I agree with you. I’ve very much the same approach. No stressing, just do your best and that’s it and here to help if you need me (but then step back as well).

    Reply

  • Good suggestions, now to give them a go and see what works and what doesnt

    Reply

  • I don’t know how I will do that.

    Reply

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