How do smart children prepare for exams. Some say getting into the habit of studying is like riding a bike.
Even though riding a bike is one of the easiest things to do, it requires time and effort. The point being, in order to master anything, you need to put in the hours. There’s simply no other way around it.
When you were a kid, it’s likely that someone gave you a few lessons to start you off. Then it was entirely up to you to practise every day until you could comfortably say goodbye to those training wheels! The same theory applies if your child is having trouble studying and retaining what they learn at school. To prepare for their exams and to internalise the learning, there are steps you can take to help your child.
Why Are Study Skills Important to Prepare for Exams?
One thing is for sure; studying can quickly become overwhelming, especially if your child has to shuffle between subjects, homework, test preparation and projects. To help them study smarter to prepare for exams, you can teach them the following study tips.
Teach your child that if they want to spend less time studying outside of school, they need to pay attention in class. If they can do this well, they will essentially be reinforcing the lesson at home in lesser time.
For starters, make sure your child has the best seat in class. They should be sitting at a place in class where they can read the board, are not distracted by others and can speak to the teacher easily.
This might be more of a challenge if your child has a tendency to be loud and has friends who are constantly joking around in class. This is where your negotiation skills as a parent come into play. Instead of telling your child straight up that you don’t care much for the company they keep, tell them how it will benefit them to pay attention in class. Tell them they will have more time to do the things they like and indulge in hobbies or sports if they take care of most of their studying at school.
If your child is the quiet type, be sure to ask them if they’re facing any problems at school. When broaching this topic, make sure your demeanour is such that they know you’re there to listen, not judge.
There is a tendency for students today to rely on presentation decks being forwarded to them later so they think they don’t have to make notes while the lesson is presented. What they don’t realise is that the act of notetaking, the physical act of writing the information on paper, helps to transfer the knowledge and prepare for exams in a way that listening alone cannot.
So, encourage your child to write down short notes and pointers while their teacher is teaching. Everything that’s on the board needs to be jotted down in their notebook for easy revision so that they can more easily prepare for exams with organised notes. They should also make sure their notes are not illegible so that they can revise the information later and understand it. Encourage them too to stay organised and separate notes by subject.
Plan in Advance to Prepare for Exams
This goes for projects and tests that never seem to end. If you notice your child cramming night after night and still not managing to get stellar grades, you might need to sit them down and nip this problem in the bud.
While there’s nothing wrong with studying late into the night to prepare for exams, it shouldn’t become a habit. If your child is struggling on this front, get them a fun calendar designed around their favourite cartoon, anime, or movie. This should encourage them to use it often and develop a habit of planning their time. Help your child pencil in important dates around upcoming tests and project deadlines. This should help them keep track of what the week or month looks like, and they’ll be better prepared.
Do Homework in Chunks
This is especially helpful when there’s a lot to get done and not enough time to do it in. Children lack experience when it comes to breaking chores into smaller pieces. This is where you can help them. Let’s say they have a total of 15 maths problems they need to solve by the end of the week. This may overwhelm them, so you can step in and make sure they get through three problems daily. Teach your child this handy trick, and they’ll be truly grateful.
Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Help
If you feel that your child sits with a problem longer than they need to, use your best judgement and ask if they need help. Once you’ve helped them out, address this problem indirectly to let them know there’s no harm in asking a question or two. It’s important to do so indirectly, so they don’t feel like you are clamping down on them. Make your child feel they’re a priority and that you’re always available to answer any questions or sort through any confusion. Also, make it a point to meet with their teacher and find out how active your child is in class.
Get a Good Night’s Sleep
It’s common knowledge that our brain doesn’t function at its optimum if we haven’t slept enough. It’s a common error students make to prepare for exams. Kids are even more vulnerable to this and need all the sleep they can get. Come nighttime, sleep should be given utmost importance.
Now that you know the secret to studying smarter, enlighten your child and help them unleash their true potential. With these tips and tricks at their disposal, they will become better learners in no time at all.