- Education and Science»
- Elementary, Middle School & High School
How To Help Children Pass Their Tests Successfully
I have witnessed many students who fail tests despite studying their lessons. I have also observed some who don’t seem to study their lessons but still do well in tests. This is not to say that it is better not to study. There just seems to be effective strategies on how to successfully pass tests and these children and their parents have mastered them. Passing tests has a long-term benefit on the students. Usually, a person's intelligence is measured through tests, although this is quite unfair because people have different levels of intelligence. But we have to admit that it is an advantage to have a test result higher than the average to be admitted easily to a course in college or to be hired in a company one is applying.
If a student constantly fails tests, the frustration will have a lasting impact on his perception of himself. His classmates will also see this as an opportunity to taunt or bully him since they have a feeling that they are academically superior to him. If the child doesn’t know how to cope with peer insults or taunting, he will lapse further into a sense of being worthless, thereby affecting his studies negatively. So here are my tips on how to help children pass their tests which I culled from my teaching experiences.
1. Begin with yourself.
Remember when you were reading stories or making your child listen to classical music even though he was still in your womb in the belief that this would stimulate his growing brain? I have observed many parents neglecting to help their children in their studies as they grow older. Many are caught up with their own work problems to care for the struggles of their children. Fact is, this is the time when they need their parents’ guidance the most. If you are too busy with your work, find time to discuss his test results. Showing concern to his achievement will go a long way to build his confidence in test-taking. Drag yourself if you have to, no matter how tired you are when you get home.
2. Evaluate your child’s ability.
Can he learn easily or does it take you sometime to get through him? Accepting your child’s mental capacity and working according to his ability is the first step towards the right direction. This will serve as your starting point on how to go about guiding him in successfully passing his tests
3. If the child has no study table or nook in your home, this is the best time to set up one for him.
It is best to study for a test if there is one particular place in your house where he can prepare for the forthcoming exams. It is easier to pass tests if your child has his own nook where he can study without any interruptions.
4. Magazines, books, encyclopedia and other reference materials should be readily available for him.
These will come in handy when he has to clarify some skills or lessons which he has not mastered. Of course having an internet is also a great help, but he has a tendency to browse networking sites or play games effectively forgetting his review.
5. If he is studying, check on him once in a while.
Ask how it is going and offer your help if you know the lessons. However, do not attempt to teach him if you are not sure of your explanation regarding the topic at hand. It may muddle him further. Point to the stocks of learning materials, however, say it in a manner that he will not interpret it as lack of interest on your part. They become more motivated to pass their tests if they see that you give time to him as he is preparing for his test.
6. Tell your child that you are not expecting him to get a perfect score but it will gladden you if he does.
Sometimes, setting up high standards will encourage him to do his best. If he feels that you are really interested, he will work on it. I observe many of my students who have the desire to please their parents. So, they work on not just on passing their tests but on topping them.
7. Praise him if he was able to meet his goal.
Better yet, reward him with a little material thing. Don’t just make it too excessive, for he might only strive to do good if he receives a gift. On the other hand, showing a little disappointment in your face when he failed or got a low score will set his desire for higher test results. Sometimes, a little psychology is all you need.
8. Don’t drive him too hard.
Learn to push and pull with moderation. I once encountered a parent who expects too much from his child. He told him that he should always have the highest test scores among his classmates. It so happened that he was not able to study. Out of fear, he corrected his mistakes on his paper, adjusted his score and presented it to his parents. This occurred for several times. During the deliberation for the top 5 of a particular grading period, he came only second to one of his classmates. His parents protested and showed his test papers. It was then discovered that he was tampering his test results. He was crying while explaining that his father spanks him if he gets a test score lower than any of his classmates. Poor boy!
9. Memorizing a poem, concept or anything on a regular basis can help develop his mind.
His brain’s capacity for learning increases due to constant practice. I found out that my students can retain lessons better if their mind is kept polished, so to speak. This is evidenced by the high marks they get in any test I give them.
10. Once in a while, confer with his teacher.
Together, you can plan an action or activity to help your child prepare for the test. It is quite reassuring for him to know that people around him work for his success. This also helps him avoid test anxiety.
11. Always check on him/her to see if they have inculcated the habit of studying.
Following a regular study schedule will make them settle into a more focused review sessions. Encourage them to fight the habit of lazing around by urging them to work more if they feel like they would rather sit or play.
I hope this will help you in guiding your children. Remember that your support is one of the most valuable tools for their success not only in taking tests but more importantly, in their over-all growth and development.