How to prevent tensions between school & home

What can you do to help students getting ready for exams? For more ideas about thrifty, creative and eco-friendly ways to raise children follow this blog or get my book Homemade Kids, out of the library. This post is by Nicola Baird, also see

Some of the families in our babysitting circle back at a 2009 get-together.

Some of the families in our babysitting circle back at a 2009 get-together. Plenty of these children are now dealing with exams at school – and even university!

As the Year 11s start getting deeper into their revision schedules – for some that will be pre-Xmas mocks, and others January testing – tension between home and school can start to appear. It will definitely help if you, your child and the school have worked any difficulties out in advance. It will also be useful if you’ve been to the scheduled parent evenings over your child’s school career so you have a realistic idea about how they are getting on. The point is to make progress!

Everyone’s situation is so very different – and exam results, to a certain extent, matter a great deal. But it probably helps if parents remember that most 15-16 year olds doing GCSEs in 2017 need us less on their backs over trivial misdemeanours at the moment (like tidying rooms, helping with housework, etc). The kids have got enough to do and worry about, rather than adding a full on family fight to their stress levels.

What Every Parent Needs to Know by Toby Young & Miranda Thomas (Penguin, £14.99)

What Every Parent Needs to Know by Toby Young & Miranda Thomas contains all that you used to need to know. Now you just need to be kind and boost your child’s mental and physical wellbeing. (Penguin, £14.99)

Assuming everything else is OK (attendance, learning, revision schedules, homework) then teaching your child how to relax properly, and eat well – both by your example – should surely be the top priorities right now, eg,

  • Going to bed at sensible times (and thus getting up at a sensible time)
  • Being encouraged to do some sport or spend time outside even if it’s just kicking leaves or chatting
  • Getting together some healthy snacks (nuts, sunflower seeds, crackers, cheese, fruit most things on sale at Itsu)

It will also help if you can listen to and/or support what the school says needs to be done.

Here’s hoping you have a real positive partnership with your child and their school. Because it’s going to make the next few months of GCSE countdown much easier.

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