3 tips to help your child revise
With SATs and GCSE exams fast approaching, after February half-term, the stress can feel overburdening for parents and children, alike. It can be hard to encourage your child to revise more consistently – particularly if you’re not sure how best to help them.
We’ve gathered three tips to help you help your child study.
Create a revision timetable
You don’t have to make an official document, just drawing one out, colour-coding it and sticking it to the wall is sometimes enough to help your child realise that revision doesn’t have to take up their entire evening. Even just spending an hour each evening, revising can be enough to help them build confidence in the subject.
Visualising that you can have a break and be done with revision after this block is completed on the timetable, can help encourage your child to knuckle down and get on with their revision session.
Focusing your child’s GCSE revision from Monday through to Friday means almost 3/4 hours a day revising – this could include free periods, breaks and an hour after school – but, it does mean they get the weekend to themselves to spend as they please. That’s the real incentive in this example. Tutor Doctor recommends that GCSE students should not study for more than four hours a day as the brain gets tired, and your child can quickly lose focus.
Adopt the Pomodoro Technique
Your child’s revision timetable needs to reflect their learning style – the BBC reported that the average British attention span only stretched to 14 minutes. If your child has a short attention span, they might benefit from employing the Pomodoro Technique.
The Pomodoro Technique was developed in the 1980s by Francesco Cirillo and is a time-management technique. This technique helps you focus and power through distractions by limiting each ‘work’ session to 25 minutes – each session is punctuated with a five-minute break. A break only to get a drink or have a wander a stretch your legs. Every four 25-minute sessions completed allows for a more extended 20-minute break.
This can help your child become more focused and productive in their 25-minute segments. These segments can be installed using a Pomodoro smartphone app on either your phone or your child’s.
Keep your thoughts to yourself
It’s no good coming out with lines such as ‘your sister did well, so we hope you do, too’ or ‘exams were harder when I was at school’ – remarks like this will only anger your child – these words aren’t words of encouragement. It’s essential, as the parent or guardian, to stay upbeat and help them in any way you can.
Some children might find it easier to ‘teach’ you about the subject – this gives them the chance to demonstrate verbally how much they know about the subject in question. Another great way to help your child is to quiz them on the topics they’ve been revising.
Sometimes talking a subject through can help cement stats and other learnings in their mind, more so than if they just sat in a room and read a textbook making notes.
Are you a member of the PTA? You’ll know that OFSTED is looking for schools with excellent parental engagement, we are offering a FREE 30-day trial of our school app so you can see just what our system can do for your school. Sign up for your free trial today.