How To Handle Test Anxiety In Kids- Tips For Parents
The first word he says when he gets in, “Mom, I have my big test tomorrow.” The state of mind is promptly set. I can feel his stress and test anxiety.
Therefore, I hang tight for him to proceed and at the same time stay mindful not to extend my own emotions about tests.
“I am feeling nervous, mom.” His astute and warm hazel eyes are gazing at me, hoping to meet my eyes. I smile and state “I know you are nervous and completely understand that. Do you remember what I always tell to you, honey?”
“Mom, No matter what, you are proud of me and that I don’t need to be the best. You only want me to work hard.”
I battle to contain my giggling, However it feels so great when I realize the children DO listen to what I keep telling them.
Test anxiety is genuine and it can certainly obstruct even the best students from showing up their maximum capacity.
Dr. Robert Pressman, the lead specialist for New England Pediatric Psychology portrays test anxiety as having three particular segments:
First, Behavioral – “going blank” or having disorganized thoughts.
Second, Psychological – feeling incredibly anxious, fretfulness, shaky or insecure.
Third, Physiological –light-headed, faint, nauseous, rapid heartbeat, knot in stomach, headache, tension, perspiring.
The solution lies in their taking control of the test, not letting the test control them.
No doubt, test anxiety multiplies mistakes, knock down reasoning and working memory, makes disarray, and brings down grades. All the more significantly, it’s unsafe to the prosperity of our children.
As we know, the average American student in government funded schools sit for 112 state sanctioned tests in their scholastic vocation, it’s difficult to move away from distressing end- of-year tests.
Luckily, there are strategies you can use to enable your kid to feel more calm and confident heading into the test. In case you’re a parent, these methodologies will work with your child as well!
Tips to help your child handle Test Anxiety
- Psychologist Robert Cialdini speaks of a peer from his graduate program who completely smashed the GMAT, scoring in the top 1 percent. His secret? Go through the test and tackle the simple questions first. So tell your child to answer the easiest questions first, mark difficult questions and return to them later.
- Regard and approve your kid’s sentiments. Undoubtedly, test anxiety is a genuine feeling and it very well may be all-devouring.
- Just before the test, your kid may feel fast heartbeat and fluttery stomach. That’s why it’s a smart thought to have one more tool at their disposal. Deep breathing is proven to lower anxiety by decreasing the heart rate and providing the brain with much needed oxygen. Make your child practice this deep breathing technique – Ask her to breathe in through her nose to the count of 3 and then blow out through her mouth for the count of 5.
- Most importantly, try to avoid dialogues like, “don’t stress, nothing will go wrong” – on the grounds that to them their sentiments and fears are genuine. Saying “don’t stress” doesn’t eliminate the concern. They have to work THROUGH their emotions and stressful thoughts.
- In such situations, take the discussion ahead by asking your kid: “How about we think about certain approaches to deal with the circumstance. What are your thoughts?” Together you can discover answers for their concern, yet let your kid lead the discussion. The more they effectively indulge in the brainstorming conversation to problem-solve, the more empowered they will feel.
- If need be, look for proficient assistance if your kid’s nervousness gets unmanageable.
At last but not the least-
Compose your kid a letter or a hand written note. Our child’s teacher had each parent send in a letter in sealed envelope. This letter was for the children to open just before they stepped through their examination. It was a magnificent inclination, realizing that the last thing he read before the test, were my soothing words.