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PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2012 9:03 pm 
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Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2011 12:24 pm
Posts: 160
Hi

I have an academic daughter who gets terrrified in exams to the extent that the numbers dont make sense to her.

How can I help her relax and just perform as well as she can???

She's set her heart on one school - Latymer Upper - which doesnt help as she's so mega nervous she wont get in that I think she's going to trip herself up.

I'd really love any advice you can give... all Ive come up with so far is trying to find a trial exam for her, and counting slow breathes and perhaps filling in a number square as a mechanical exercise when she sits down..... She dismisses all my mental images of imagining herslef calmly moving from question to question or telling herself she'll be able to do lots of it and the other bits dont matter....


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 16, 2012 11:56 am 
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Joined: Thu May 26, 2011 8:37 pm
Posts: 577
Hi

When I was 17 I applied to Oxford University. I was really desperate to get in and was so nervous that I totally fluffed the interview and was turned down. When I was 18 I reapplied. This time I wanted to get in even more. So badly that i felt a steely calm. I remember realising this just before I was called to interview: I want this so much that i can't afford the expense of nerves. It was a real surprise.

You could tell her this story. That nerves can be a sign, not of wanting something but of thinking you're not up to something. If she focuses on wanting it and wanting to do her best, then she may calm down.

Give her lots of practises at home, sometimes in silence and sometimes with horrible distractions, like you and your DH bickering in the background. Tell her you'll do it on purpose to help her practise gaining a really focused concentration, come what may.

Go through all the things she's concerned about and discuss coping strategies. Make sure she chooses her ideal solution rather than having one foisted on her that would work for you but not necessarily for her.
E.g.
She doesn't understand a question or a set of questions. Put a dot beside them and move on. Go back to them at the end.
She runs out of time - guess! A try is better than a blank.
She can't see straight. Deep breath and trace the number with her finger. Use a ruler, pencil or scrap paper to blot out all but the section she's looking at. Read the question slowly, word by word. Work out at which point she fails to understand.

Give her maths vocab tests. Does she know the difference between mean, median and mode? What are vertices? What are factors etc. These should be as embedded in her mind as the 2x table.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 4:11 pm 
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Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2011 12:24 pm
Posts: 160
Seriously great tips menagerie .... just realised never replied to you... must have got distracted......

Love your steely story

And yes DD did manage to calm those nerves - and found her own solutions - feel dead proud of her!


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