10 Smart Mantras to Get Your Child to Succeed in Competitive Exams

Many parents are a worried lot when it comes to their child preparing for Entrance Exams. Parents also get advise from hundreds of people, some of which are contradictory. Keeping all this in mind, here are some useful tips for worried parents to help them cope during this period.

  1. Ration your child's time
  2. If your child is preparing for competitive Entrance Exams, you may be prone, even if unknowingly, to ignoring the school curriculum. Try rationing their time. Provide a specific amount of time everyday for school syllabus. This will make it extremely easy to strike a balance between the school exams and the competitive exams.

  3. Exercise gadget wisdom
  4. Set aside a specific time for your child to attend to Facebook and WhatsApp or any other social media platforms. And when studying, make sure that the gadgets are out of reach. Advise your child to keep all message/email pings on silent mode. Allow recreation time. Do not force your child to be always in front of books.Breaks are meant to re-charge battery.

  5. Become the support system
  6. Outsource your task of tracking all entrance exam announcements and the related applications submission to your self. Everybody has 24 hours in a day. You cannot create a single more moment but can definitely use your time smartly. Remember – winners don't do different things – they do things differently.
    Exam timelines, test patterns, college ranking & research should be known first hand rather than depend on a coaching institute or a friend's friend. Planning ahead is the key to be totally in control of your child's future. Let your child utilise his/her valuable time & energy in cracking the exam. The parent can play the other important role of taking care of the entrance exam planning part.

  7. How to utilize extra coaching ?
  8. Many students take extra coaching for school curriculum as well. Here is a suggestion – let your child attend their school classes regularly. Advise your child to use the extra coaching, to clarify doubts and queries, get smart tips, overcome specific weaknesses, take mock tests etc. Most of the schools complete their syllabus by November or December, so let your child use the external coaching to get an edge, instead of just a serial study of chapters for which the school may be the best option.

  9. How to handle tense moments
  10. There will be moments when you will feel anxious and frustrated and stressed for your child. Learn to RELAX. Take a walk. Practise yoga. Talk to your child. And see the magic. Advise your child to relax and take off any pressure that may be mounting.

  11. When to peak for the competition ?
  12. Keep in mind that the best time to peak before an exam, for most students, is about one or one-and-a-half months. Ensure that your child is at their best when the D-Day arrives. "Too early and you risk loosing steam. Too late and you may not be able to realise your best potential", says Nishchay, an NTSE scholarship holder, who made it to the prestigious IIT through JEE.

  13. Adjust your child's body clock
  14. Many students study late into the night, especially when the exams are drawing near. It is worthwhile to advise your child to start sleeping a bit early a few days before the exams. This will set their bio rhythm so that on the examination day, they are fresh and focused and completely devoted to writing their tests. This may sound trivial now but has a remarkable impact on your child's performance. Provide healthy diet to your ward. Ensure that your child takes a balanced & healthy diet. Avoid junk food as much as possible. Instead of 2 heavy meals, develop a habit of light meals with 3-4 light intermittent servings of fruits, yoghurt, nuts etc.

  15. What if your child does not compare well with peers
  16. It is a natural tendency to keep comparing or kids with their peers. But do remember that there are many factors that influence their performance. Do not get disheartened if your child does not compare well. Ask your child to be honest to themselves – whether they are putting in their best or not. If they are, then they will get their due.
    "Yes, it is a competitive world, but can some one deliver more than his/her capacity? Your best bet is to provide a conducive environment which is motivating enough for your child to put in their best. Believe in your child. Believe in your child's career choice and ambitions. Talk, discuss & share your experiences and opinions but try not to issue decisions or judgements.", says Ranjana, mother of a student who made it into IIT

  17. Do not try to realise your un-fulfilled dreams through your child.
  18. Many parents force specific career options upon their ward, not realising that he or she may be cut out for something else. Isn't it better to be a good accountant rather than being a bad engineer. Albert Einstein's words are very pertinent here - "Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid."

  19. Don't be a CCTV.
  20. Out of sheer concern for their kids, many parents become overindulgent and start keeping a check on their child. While the concern may be well meant, the modus operandi is below par. There is a very fine line between concerned observance and intrusive checking. Your ward's body language will make it very clear when you are crossing over. Give personal space. It's crucial.

About the blogger: Neelesh is the Co-Founder at MyExamPlan.com. He can be reached at neelesh@myexamplan.com

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