Revision Tips For Parents
Here we have good tips for helping pupils revise.
- A dedicated quiet space with good natural light or lighting is best for studying, with no distractions. If you have other children who are not studying for exams, make sure that they know the importance of revision time.
- Ensure that your son or daughter has one evening a week away from their studies. It’s also important that they take regular breaks during the study periods.
- Be around as a ‘feeding station’ – feed your child lots of healthy food and proper meals – not too many sugary snacks and junk food.
- Offer to help with testing or ask if there is something that you can do for them – reassure them you are concerned about their welfare more than the results.
- Know your son or daughter’s revision/study support timetable. Encourage them to tell you about what they are studying. If you know that they are not at their best first thing in the morning, encourage them to rest then and work when they are livelier. They should choose their weakest/sleepiest time of day to be sociable and go out, or watch TV at those times.
- Know exactly the date, time and location for each exam and incorporate this into the revision plan and make sure that they have the correct equipment they need for the exam (calculators, rulers etc). Know what they are not allowed to take in to the exam (mobile phones, pagers, etc).
- If your son or daughter has a medical condition, e.g. Diabetes, hay fever, make sure that the school knows about it. There are special considerations for some conditions.
- If there is a family crisis, for example divorce or bereavement, again ensure that your son or daughter’s teacher knows about it since the additional stress can affect your child’s exam performance.
- Make sure that your child is using the internet to study and not as a resource to give the appearance of study!
- Tell them that they can only try their best and even if they don’t do as well as you hope, you still love them just as much.
How Can You Help?
- Offer help - Help your child to structure what he/she is doing, but don’t be overbearing. Sit your son or daughter down and ask how you can help. Let him or her know that you are there to test them, or to bring in a much-needed cup of tea.
- Look around for revision materials - Contact the school and ask for some revision aids and there are lots of tips on revision websites.
- Encourage Breaks - Breaks are vital - no one can revise all the time, and all brains need time to digest information properly.
- Keep an eye on the mobile phone and internet - Social networking is a really big distraction and something that you could agree to put on hold. Suggest that you will turn off the internet router when revision is going on, or look after his or her mobile phone for an hour. Remove siblings from the revision area, too.
- Look for signs of stress - If your child is not sleeping or eating, you need to address this.
- Help them play to their strengths - Do you know how your child learns? Suggest cards, charts or techniques such as mind-mapping and multisensory learning (walking around, saying things out loud, rather than just sitting and reading).
- Don’t get stressed - It’s vital that you don’t panic. If parents stress out too much, their children can pick up on this and get anxious in turn. Quiet pressure is better than nagging or shouting.
- Rewards - Stick with something simple and immediate in recognition of their commitment to revision
Be firm - It’s good to be nice, but don’t worry about being a little tough as well. After all, your child needs to do some revision, and you need to make sure it’s done.
- Keep things in proportion - It’s amazing how much competition there is between parents about exams. You know the sort of thing: “My son got 3 A*s and yours only got 2 A*s.” Don’t let a situation develop whereby your child thinks he is letting you down if he/she doesn’t get straight A* and B grades. Your job is to protect as well as encourage. They need to know that they are expected to do their best and that’s what counts!