Secondary schools are jam-packed with students, parents, teachers and teachers' aides in the hope that their children will emerge as the cream of the crop. This means that some students will have to take it easy when it comes to preparing for their PSLE.
It is one of the most stressful times of a child’s life, but parents can take steps to ease the pressure. Here are eight ways to help keep PSLE stress at bay.
Parents can be prepared for their child’s PSLE by having them start their revision early. It is better to start revising in Primary 2 rather than Primary 3 as it gives children more time to learn and absorb what they have learnt.
Exam season is not just a one-time event. It is an annual ritual that takes place over many months. Students and parents must plan their revision schedules and do some reading for the upcoming year. If a child has the chance to learn about a subject in school, then it is important for him or her to read about it as well so that he or she can prepare for the exam.
Ms. Goh Si Ying, principal of St Margaret’s Primary School, said: “For those who have not done well in previous PSLEs, it is important that they should not be too hard on themselves and take things one step at a time.”
2. Look for a school that suits your child
Schools differ in terms of the subjects they teach and the emphasis they place on different subjects. Parents should identify which school best suits their child’s strengths and weaknesses before enrolling them into any school.
Ms. Goh said: “If you feel that your child has problems with Math or English, find a school which will focus on those two subjects.”
3. Find out about extra lessons offered by schools
Some schools offer extra lessons to help students who are weak in certain subjects catch up with others who are ahead of them academically.
These extra lessons allow students to understand concepts better and improve their grades without putting them under too much pressure during class time.
4. Ask your child about how he or she feels about taking exams
Students may feel nervous about taking exams. If they do, parents should reassure them that they can do well if they put in their best effort.
Parents can also help by helping their children relax and reduce stress by taking deep breaths before the exam.
5. Have your child get enough sleep
Sleep is very important for students as it helps them to stay alert and perform better in exams. They should get a good night’s sleep the night before an exam and have a healthy breakfast to boost their energy levels.
6. Ask your child about his or her fears and worries
Parents should not dismiss their children’s fears as trivial as they could be very significant to them. They should also take note of their concerns so that they can help ease them before the exam day arrives.
7. Set realistic goals for your child
While it is important for parents to help motivate their children, they should also set realistic goals for them instead of setting impossible targets which could only lead to disappointment if not achieved. It is also good for parents to ask teachers about what scores students need to get into a particular school or course of study.
8. Be patient with your child during revision time
Revision is an important part of learning, but many students find it difficult to focus on revision as they are more concerned about the exam itself.
These means that revision takes longer than usual for them as well as being more stressful than usual too.
Parents can help by giving frequent breaks so that students do not burn out during revision time and have more time left over.
To revise after breaks instead of having less time due to exhaustion from long hours of revising without breaks in between.
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