Nobody likes exams because quite simply nobody likes to be put on the spot or put in a situation in which there is a chance of failure. But exams don’t have to be stressful!
The key thing is imagining the exam is simply another lesson where you are asked to write down all that you can in relation to the questions in front of you.
So planning in advance is vital and should be organised in a way which suits the learning habits of the student. We all learn in different ways – some of us remember things best by writing them down and/or colour-coding them. Others like to use images and remember things photographically. Others like to read and repeat facts, learning these off pat.
- Mind mapping is a popular way of preparing for exams and can be used to revise for any subject at any level. It involves drawing information as opposed to writing it and so is a visual aid. Different colours for different subjects can be used or different coloured sheets of paper can be used for each subject too.
- Using colour whether through coloured pens or paper will enhance learning as colour positively affects the brain.
- Chunking and planning revision for different subjects will enable the task of revision to not overwhelm the student and therefore concentrate more on learning rather than thinking about the looming exams.
- Sleep, diet and exercise especially during the lead to exams is vital and students should ensure they eat healthily and get enough hours sleep every night to avoid being tired.
- Developing a can-do attitude and belief in themselves will also go a long way to achieving during exams. Doubting and worrying only saps energy that could otherwise be used to further learning and develop good revision habits.
- The habit of visualising success and what this looks and feels like is also a good way to attract success and manifesting success in the student’s life, not just during exam time but in other stressful situations too.
- Having a drawn out plan is ideal. In this way students can tick off as they go through their revision topics and this acts as a positive influence and focuses their efforts on what has been completed rather than what still needs to be done.
I hope that these hints and tips help to reduce exam stress and I wish all of you the very best of luck with your exams as well as with the current Independent School Entry exams for 7+, 11+ and 13+.