7 Ways To Help Your Teenager Manage Exam Stress

The stress of formal exams is a tricky one to negotiate for both teenagers and their parents: The stress of doing well, the stress of what will happen afterwards and the stress of what to do with their lives in the future can all take its toll. I actually think our teenagers have many stresses  that they have to deal with and it seems to be much more than I remember as a teenager growing up in the 1980’s.

I know a little about exam stress as one of my children has A’Levels this summer whilst the other has GCSE’s! Obviously, with a two year gap between my children, I knew this day would come but it seems to have rushed towards us since September!  I worry about them as any parent would and want to help them as much as possible so, here are my top tips for managingexam stress at this time in their lives.

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Why does my child tip-toe? Understanding sensory needs in young children.

We are beginning to understand more and more about the difficulties children have that may affect their learning in the classroom. Over my 20 years in the classroom, I have taught hundreds of children and all have differing needs. Sometimes, there have been children that have struggled more with their memory or there are others that may need extra help with maths. More recently I have been interested in the needs of children who seem to seek out or withdraw from sensory input. A child’s brain continually takes on sensory input throughout the day which is filtered appropriately and used to make sense of the world. Sometimes, a child may be hypersensitive (oversensitive) or hyposensitive (undersensitive) to this sensory input. This may indicate that they have a barrier to learning such as ASD (autistic spectrum disorder) and you may find this post useful. Or it just may be that they need a little extra help for a while as it may affect their learning in the classroom.
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Mother’s Day gifts from our children.

I have been teaching for 20 years and every year I help children make cards or simple gifts for their mums for Mother’s Day. During this time, I have talked to children about why they love their mummy. What is it that makes their mummy special for them? I thought I’d share some of the things that they have told me. By sharing these, I hope that all mums out there will feel special this Mother’s Day. It’s the small things we do for our children that they love, cherish and remember the most. Interestingly, the answers the children have given over the years haven’t really changed.
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The Working Parents dilemma

I love my job.
I have said this before. I’m a teacher and I really love my job.
What I don’t love are the hours; the paperwork and the time commitment needed. There really aren’t enough hours in the day to be a good teacher and a healthy mum/partner. So many teachers are leaving the profession before they have really started. The holidays help but when you are working such long hours in the term time and don’t engage with your own children, something is very wrong.
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Could our children be anxious because of us?

Children seem to be more anxious in our society than ever before. This is something that I have been reading quite a bit about recently and the facts are quite staggering. In fact the research shows that as many as one in six young people in the UK suffer from anxiety. To look it another way, one in five teenagers in an average class will be suffering from anxiety (anxiety.org.uk). This is a frightening statistic frankly and it got me thinking about why this is happening.  As a mum, I know that there are many pressure of our teenagers which I have written about Here.

I have wondered though if we can make our children anxious?
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8 reasons Why Pets are Good for Children.

So your child wants a pet? Are they demanding a kitten or a cute puppy? Do they dream  of their own pony or pet rat? Obviously, getting a pet takes thought and preparation but they are an essential part of family life in my opinion.
Before you decide, here are the top 8 reasons why a pet is a great idea for your child and your whole family.
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The wobbly tooth brigade.

My mum always used to tell us that we must take photographs of our children when they were gappy and toothless. I always thought that was a bit weird. I mean, surely a cute picture of our kids with beautiful smiles was better for the wall? But now, I look back at those photos of gappy grins with great fondness. What a lovely stage in a child’s life and this year, I happen to teach this age group!
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