Stress during or just before examinations is a reality that most students face. Parents also get anxious about marks and performance, and are likely to transfer their anxiety to their children. The pressure to perform well and sometimes, the constant push from parents may make children panicky and stressful as the test draws near.
A study conducted by the paediatrics department of the Sawai Man Singh Medical College, Jaipur, which was published in the National Journal of Integrated Research in Medicine (Times of India, July 2016) revealed this -- that more than 82 per cent of students had high stress levels just a week before the start of tests. The study mostly focussed on adolescent children.
There is no doubt that exams can be stressful for both the student and the parent. The key is to not get bogged down, manage time and take frequent breaks from long hours of studying.
We asked some school-going children across ages to tell us what they do to beat exam stress. Your child can also try out these simple tips to relax during a test:
1. Watching a favourite TV show
“Whenever I want to take a break from studying and do something fun, I watch Doraemon on television and then I feel stress-free. My brother Karthik, never gets stressed but he too enjoys watching Doraemon with me,” says Sakshi Rao Varam, a 12th standard student, who is busy giving her exams right now.
2. Dancing and playing outdoors
“I love dancing because it takes my mind off the exams. In fact, even during my upcoming tests, I will be going for dance practice as I am participating in a Navarathri programme. Otherwise, I take breaks while studying, to cycle or play a game of badminton outdoors,” says 10-year-old Aditi Prabhu.
3. Playing a game of football
“The best way for me, to beat the exam stress is playing football. It helps me relax. When I am at home, then it is dancing. After hours of studying, it really takes my mind off the pressure,” says 14-year-old Naomi Kurian.
4. Cooking and creating some artwork
“Cooking is a great stress-buster. When I want to take my mind off all the studying, I love to cook or help my mother in the kitchen. Otherwise, I take a break and relax by working on some small art project, which leaves me refreshed. Then, I don’t feel the tension so much,” says Hannah Thomas, a seventh standard student.
5.Building with blocks
“I don’t really get worried during tests because I have to only solve worksheets. But I take a break from studying and play with building blocks once in a while. I also go cycling to relax,” says six-year-old Atreya Nayak.
6. Doodling and making sketches
“I rarely feel stressed out during examinations. But studying continuously makes me feel tired sometimes. So, I take breaks in between lessons and start doodling. I make some simple sketches or pencil drawings while watching outside the window. This makes me feel relaxed,” says 11-year-old V Saakshath.
7. Playing chess or monopoly
“Chess is my favourite fun thing to do during the exams. Whenever, I am feeling too stressed out while studying for the test, I take out my chess board and ask my mother to play a game with me. Sometimes, we play monopoly,” says Ahaan, a fourth standard student.