There is much advice out there for students on how to revise. However, exam time is also a stressful time for parents who worry about their children and the pressures they face in taking these all important exams. Parents need advice and ideas on how they can support their child through exam season. What’s more, parents can make a huge impact in helping their children to be successful in their exams. Many schools, including our own, now host an information evening for parents so that they can help their children with revision. Here are some of our top tips for parents.
1. Revision timetables
Revision timetables are a great idea. We gave our students the advice that they should try and complete a minimum of 40 hours of revision over the Easter holidays. We also gave parents and students advice on filling out an effective revision timetable which ensures that different subjects are revised to allow revision to be ‘spaced out’ and avoid cramming. We would recommend that students build into their revision timetables time to study but also time to relax and enjoy themselves. Parents should have a copy of the revision timetable so they know when they should be pestering their child to revise and when they should allow their child some relaxation time. The family should pin the timetable up somewhere where everyone can see it.
2. Turn off the wi-fi
With the exception of websites that teachers have told students to use, surfing the internet is generally a bad way to revise. The teachers at our school have all given students revision materials and resources to use that are bespoke to the courses they are studying. Aimlessly surfing the internet will waste time and invariably involve rereading chunks of information that will not aid effective revision What’s more parents should either take their child’s phone or turn off the wi-fi so their child is not distracted by social media. If students are going to revise then they should ensure that the revision is fully focused time.
3. Provide a quiet space for revision
Students need to revise somewhere quiet and away from distractions. It is important for parents to provide this for their child if possible. Ideally, students should revise in silence at a desk without any distractions such as music.
4. Know what works
Parents need to know what kind of revision works. The best strategy for revision is for students to test themselves. This is often referred to as ‘practice testing’. The process of being able to retrieve information helps students to remember it. This is why completing practice questions is such an effective method of revision. Students should ditch the highlighters and avoid aimlessly rereading things that they most probably already know. Parents can take an active role in revision by talking to their children about their revision and testing them on their knowledge and ideas.
5. Be there for your child
The exam period is a stressful time for the whole family. Parents and the whole family can help by just being there for your child, listening to their worries and looking out for signs of exam stress. If parents are worried they should talk to the appropriate person at their child’s school. Planning in some fun family activities and simple things like making tasty meals and a supportive cup of tea or coffee can make all the difference. Ultimately, the more support parents can give and the more interest they take in their child’s revision the better students will do in these exams.
Good luck to all students and parents!