Helping Your Child Overcome Test Anxiety

Call me crazy but I am one of the few who as a student actually liked to take test. I always loved test days because we did not have to listen to a teacher lecture. I have always been one who had rather figure out how to complete the work myself rather than listen to a long lengthy explanation. I have also always, in most cases, felt confident in the knowledge that I know.

However, some students have major test anxiety. I know some people who completely forget every piece of information that they knew as soon as the test paper is laid before them.

While teaching middle school, I would hear parents tell me time after time that they could not understand why their child did poorly on a test. They would promise me that their son or daughter knew the information the night before when he/she studied.

It is not uncommon for children to get nervous, upset, or even sick before a test.

As parents, there are things that you can do to lessen the pressure that your child feels before taking a test.

Teaching your child the breathing technique. Taking long deep breaths is known to release tension and anxiety.

Teach your child to turn around all of those “what if” questions. Most students begin to worry and ask themselves, “What if I do not know any of the answers?” “What if I fail the test?” Help your child create more positive “what if” questions. For example, ask your child to say, “What if I know all of the answers?” “What if I make the highest score?” “What if this is an easy test?” Just thinking in a more positive manner can help a lot.

If your child begins to feel a break down or an anxiety attack coming on during the middle of the test, instruct your child to think of something that makes him/her happy. He /she could focus on a pet or a happy memory. This will help distract the negative thoughts.

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