Get out of holiday mode and ready for exams
The body and, more importantly, the mind needs a recharge during a holiday. However, the holidays just never seem long enough. Just as we get used to sleeping in and having later nights, the new school term comes knocking.
The reality is that exams are only a few weeks away. Your child should have received their exam timetable which is normally the wake-up call. Routine is the key to getting out of holiday mode. The quicker your daily routine falls into place, the quicker a new rhythm takes over and getting ready for exams won’t feel so daunting.
Adele Keyser, a teacher from Cape Town, with 27 years’ experience under her belt, suggests the following:
- Prepare a study area. This is critical.
- Ensure your child has all the stationery they need at home and school, with spares available.
- Make morning wake-ups and bedtimes a part of the routine.
- Set a realistic study programme. Let your child be part of this process, and listen to your child (within reason) as it is him or her that will be doing the studying.
- Discuss previous study methods: what worked, what didn’t? How long were effective study sessions that kept your child’s focus (for example 20 minutes)? How long are effective study breaks in between sessions?
- Discuss certain subject topics with your child. It’s important that you show an interest and allow your child to ask questions. The more comfortable they feel about a topic, the easier it will be to study.
- Use weekends not only to study, but also to prepare notes for study sessions and to check if your child understands what they have been revising.
- Test your child to see if they understand the work they have been studying, and if they have retained the knowledge. Remember, studying is meaningless without understanding.
Parents, please note, the more prepared your child is, the less anxious they will be come exam time. Practice does eliminate stress, so the more effort they put into practising the better off they will be. Don’t let your child manipulate you into feeling sorry for him or her.