The first major PSLE exam paper is just a few months away – and that does not include the smaller milestones like the oral and listening comprehension papers in between then and now.
It is around this time that parents and students alike are starting to really feel the pressure in the last leg of the PSLE revision.
What are some ways we can help our children manage the stress and prepare to cross the finish line well?
Support your Child in the Last Few Weeks of PSLE Revision
1. Keep calm and carry on
Different children approach stress differently. Some kids may visibly crumble under all the pressure, whereas others may rebel with tantrums. Yet others may appear to be unbothered and uncaring, but unwittingly display their true feelings with nightmares and anxiety.
As parents, it is important to be a lighthouse amidst the storm. An anxious, nervous parent will simply add on to a child’s burdens. Harrying an already insecure child can quickly push them over the edge.
Parents, you too have to breathe and remember that they are still just kids, after all. Teach them how to manage their feelings wisely and that it is okay to step away if they are feeling overwhelmed.
Be there for them emotionally if they need to let out some big feelings and make them feel that they are heard and cared for. Praise them when effort has clearly been expended and remind them that they can always turn to you for help.
This is when a break from PSLE revision will come in handy!
2. Knowing when to take a breath during PSLE revision
Remind your children to take mental and physical breaks – and even better, join your children. This helps to break the monotony of studying and allows your family to bond over something other than assessment books.
Getting some fresh air and spending time amidst nature are essential to recharge children who are exhausted or worn out from constant PSLE revision. Just like adults, their batteries can be recharged with physical exercise – think cycling, scooting or just mindless playground fun.
Other children may enjoy dreamy picnics in one of our local parks or even a special dessert, bubble tea or shopping excursion to take their minds off their stress for an afternoon. Organise a weekly play date with friends, and remember not to mention studies during these sacred relaxation times.
Do not be afraid to set aside blocks of time where your kids can put their books aside and soak up the sun. It is important to teach our children that self-care is vital to our health and well-being.
3. Know your child’s strengths and weaknesses
Strategising is important in these final weeks. Some parents find it helpful to go through previously graded papers and pick out their children’s commonly made mistakes. This narrows the child’s focus and makes revision seem more manageable.
This is also studying smart. Instead of wasting time on sections that your children might already have mastered, your child can now just work on fixing their mistakes. This PSLE revision strategy means that rather than doing full papers over and over again, shift the focus on their specific difficulties so that time is spent wisely on their areas of improvement.
Breaking things down into smaller blocks makes PSLE revision less tiring and more doable for a young child.
4. Set realistic goals together
Sit down with your children and work out a schedule together. Remember to keep it manageable – we do not want our children to feel overwhelmed and exhausted just by looking at their schedules!
Small, attainable goals keep them motivated and adds to their feeling of accomplishment when they are able to tick off each milestone every day. Plan in breaks and treats to give them something to look forward to every week.
Consider cutting down on any other extra classes or enrichment lessons they may have, unless these classes are giving your child a much-needed break from PSLE revision. Some great examples are art discovery classes that place no expectations on the students.
Making It Through the Last Lap of PSLE Revision
Ultimately, remember that the PSLE is just a first, small step in our children’s lives. Show your children that you are in this with them. Remind them that all they need to do is their best!
Written by Danielle Hee