Helping your child through the exam period

As the exam season approaches parents often ask what they can do to support their child during this stressful time. We’ve put together some advice below to help you support their preparation for exams.

1. Encourage them to attend revision sessions
There are plenty of revision sessions that your son/daughter can attend at school. You can download the timetable below:

revision timetable

2. Supportive Environment
Providing your child with a calm environment and a quiet place to study will really help. It’s probably stating the obvious but make them aware that you are there for them in body and mind. Encourage them with praise and rewards. Providing incentives and rewards can help focus the mind!

3. Get involved
Don’t worry if you don’t know or understand what your child is revising! Just ask if you can help! This can be scary experience for parents but getting involved in your child’s revision can really help them make the grade. Encourage them to teach you about the topic they are revising (even if you know nothing about it!). We often learn best when we have to teach others. You can also help by asking them questions about the topics they are revising – get their notes and ask short, focussed questions. It is also possible to find past papers on the internet which you can download and print off to help them polish their exam technique. Mark schemes are also available – you could help with the marking! We’ve pulled together lots of revision techniques that you could encourage them to use here.

4. Timetable and Chunking
Encourage your child to break their revision into regular, short sessions of around 2o minutes. These should be separated by at least 5 minute breaks. The brain can only absorb so much information. To help organise time your child should set up a revision timetable. Either sign up for a free account on Exam Time to create a free online revision timetable or download a template below:

Revision Timetable Template – Word Format
Revision Timetable Template – PDF

5. Resources
Make sure there is plenty of stationary in the house including post-it notes, blank post cards and highlighter pens. Post-it notes and blank post cards can be used to summarise notes. These can then be put on the walls of bedrooms, bathrooms and event the back of the toilet door. Your child will then revise without realising it!

6. Healthy body, healthy mind
Make sure there are plenty of healthy snacks in the fridge and try to provide good, nutritious food at regular intervals. Encourage your child to join family meals, even if it’s a busy revision day – it’s important to have a change of scene and get away from the books and computer for a while. Also encourage your child to take regular exercise. A brisk walk around the block can help clear the mind before the next revision session. Make sure they drink plenty of fluids (water). Dehydration will stop learning.

If you have any questions you can always contact your child’s teacher.