It does not matter how academically gifted your child is or how much they love having their nose in a book. At some point, every parent is going to have to think long and hard about how they can help their kids study more effectively. This is no reflection on your child, far from it. It is a natural part of growing up that, at some point, the things that parents might see as distractions or things that should be enjoyed after homework is done become more interesting than hitting the books. Nearly half of kids get distracted by technology such as phones, and others simply struggle to find the motivation to study.
Any parent will tell you that finding the balance between encouraging your child to knuckle down and do their studies and providing them with a proper reward and a break is pretty difficult. You do not want to pile on the pressure and turn their schoolwork into something that they start worrying about. On the other hand, this is an area where you do need to make sure that you are getting involved and keeping them on the right track.
Now, some of the best ways of helping your child to study are about creating an environment and providing them with the kind of support structure they need. Others are a little more proactive if you need to go out there and find them some back up. As you look ahead to helping your child to prepare for the 11+ exam, here are a few tips to help you help them.
Make Sure That You Have A Routine In Place
We know that routines have been pretty hard to come by in the months since the pandemic started. It can be hard to explain to your child why they need to crack on with their home-schooling while you are on furlough, for example. But now that things are getting back to the way they were before all of this started, you need to use this time over the summer break to get to work on a schedule.
Fixed routines are so important for children, and you might just be surprised by how much they help you too. With that in mind, start by setting times for meals and do your best to make sure that you are eating together as a family. Have a clear time assigned for when you expect your child to be doing their homework, and a clear time assigned for their recreational activities.
Think About Their Snacks
We all love a sugary snack and there are definitely times when hard work needs to be rewarded and a special occasion needs to be celebrated. But we all need to remember, not just our kids, that high-sugar and high-fat snacks are not helpful when it comes to a healthy routine and lifestyle. We do not need to tell you about the kind of crash that can happen after a child treats themselves to a pack of sweets, and high-fat foods can create lethargy.
We are not saying that you need to cut these treats out entirely. What we are saying is that you need to think about the amount that your kids are eating, and when they are eating them. For their study time, try to give them healthier snacks such as fruits and nuts that are full of natural energy and protein. You should also make sure that they are drinking plenty of water and avoid sugary drinks as much as possible.
Give Them The Specific Help They Need For The 11+
It has been a little trickier than normal to identify areas where your child is struggling academically during the pandemic as there has been so much disruption to their usual schedule and so many mitigating factors. However, as much as we would like to pretend otherwise, time is marching on and there are always going to be big exams coming around the corner.
The 11 plus exam is often a real source of concern for parents as they want to make sure their child meets the required marks and make a good impression in the interview for the best independent and grammar schools. We all know how important these schools are to getting our kids on the right path. What’s more, these aren’t your standard exams. These are specific papers, and these schools have their own selective entrance rules. If you want to give your child a boost for the 11 plus, a tutor is one of the most effective ways to go about it. They can walk your child through past papers, go at a steady pace to ensure that you child understands the trickier subjects, and give them a real sense of confidence to face these tricky exams. The highly qualified tutors at Test Teach offer in person and online tuition to help your child feel more confident about this big moment. Test Teach looks for the most dynamic and experienced professionals who will identify problem areas to help your child get where they need to go.
Think Carefully About Screen Time And Rest
We’ve already talked about how there are a lot of tricky lines to walk when you’re trying to create a good working environment for your child, and there are few tightropes that are harder to face than the dreaded “screen time” question. On the one hand, so many great tools for helping your child learn are to be found on their laptops and mobile devices. On the other, they can definitely be a distraction, and you are never really going to be able to shake the worry that they are just going to load up a game or a YouTube video when you close the door.
If you want your child to have a healthy relationship with their screens, then being straightforward and honest is the best approach. Factor screen time into the routine we talked about earlier in the article. Remember that it is generally advised that you should stop looking at screens at least an hour before going to bed. Speaking of bedtime, one of the most important things to remember if you want to create a healthy environment for your child to work is to make sure that they are getting enough sleep. Staying up late is all very well and good during the summer holidays, but once school starts you need to make sure they are getting enough sleep.