How to help your kids study for an exam



exams. However, as it is our kids' exams, it is my view that we should not impose our own expectation on our kids as a command. Instead, I encourage both parents and their kids to get together and talk about their own expectations. Effective communication between parents and kids should always be a dialogue and not a monologue.

How to set a bigger goal for exams

I also know some parents will just tell their kids to study hard for the exams and let the kids find out what the meaning of "studying hard" is. Here is something I find useful. I am aware that my son is a visual learner. Thus, I gave him a picture of a dartboard and asked him to write down his goal for the upcoming PSLE. The reason why I did this was to identify if there was any expectation gap between us. He said that he was aiming at 60% whereas I thought he could achieve at least 80%. Hence, there was indeed an expectation gap.

During my discussion with him, I noticed my son was fine with the idea of getting 60% and going to an average secondary school. Of course this was not what I wanted to hear. I encouraged him to set a bigger goal by helping him to identify additional benefits of doing so. I know one of the hot buttons for him is to make his mother upset. Therefore, I encouraged him to aim at getting a better score in his PSLE so that his mother would be very proud of him. Once he saw this connection, he accepted my suggestion and wrote down a bigger goal on the picture of the dartboard.

How to help our kids to build his confidence

Do you agree that sitting for exams can be a challenge to our kids? As a result, a kid must not only believe in himself that he can do well in the exam, he must also be confident at all times. However, here is a common problem among the parents, i.e. giving their kids the negative labels. Did it happen to you when you were a kid? While others may say it is a vicious cycle, I say we have to stop it. It is important for our kids to feel that we are always supporting them.

Imagine your kid is an average student in his class and he did not do well in his mid-term exam recently. Should you give him the negative labels, for example, stupid, useless, not paying attention? Instead of giving him these negative labels, you can say something like "I see you put in effort in this exam and I know you can do better in the final exam if you put in more effort." Do you see the difference here? Encouragement from parents is a transfer of positive energy to their kids and this allows them to feel the love and support. This is an effective confidence booster to the kids.

I hope you will find my sharing useful to you, especially if your kids are preparing for their major exams like my son's PSLE. Remember, effective communication between you and your kids is important. If you notice your kids are experiencing some form of exam stress, listen to them and support them, and allow them to feel our love.

About the Author

After working in the corporate world for 16 years as an international tax lawyer, Jack Wong is now an entrepreneur working from home, allowing him to spend more time with his family. He specialises in coaching his clients to identify their passion in life, and how to make money from home. For more details, check out Jack's Website [].


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