Gcse Coursework Stress

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It’s important that parents recognise this behaviour for what it is and it could be a starting point for a discussion.” If your teenager does ask for help, what should you suggest?

Teresa Bliss says that: “A structured but not rigid revision plan helps.

“Fathers in particular tend to want to 'fix things’ but this can lead to teenagers perceiving they can’t be trusted, or can’t manage their own learning, which leads to feelings of powerlessness.

"Young people tend to know what works best for them, so help them with their revision plans but don’t lead them; let them see you can trust them and tell them they will manage.” However tempting it may be to poke your head around their bedroom door when they are supposed to be revising – don’t. Laurie Harvey suggests: “Ignore untidy bedrooms and cut them some slack.

And if you are tempted to offer bribes, whether that’s hard cash for every A*, or even a car, think again.

Andrew Fleck is adamant: “It’s better to reward effort, from the earliest age, rather than offer incentives based on results because this only adds to the pressure.High-achieving children who are perfectionists can be most in danger.” Fortunately, schools recognise that exam stress exists, and that they have a role to play in reducing it.Ben Vessey, headmaster of Canford School, Dorset, admits that we live in a target-driven culture: “Performance in exams is a key factor,” he says.• Last minute revision tips for GCSE science • Last minute revision tips for GCSE English • Last minute revision tips for GCSE maths • GCSE geography: deltas, deserts, and deforestation • GCSE history revision: dates, dynasties and dictators • GCSE MFL revision: verbs, voice and vocabulary Morgan Griffiths, managing director of Holland Park Tuition and Education Consultants, explains: “Pressure is usually felt most keenly by the parents, so eager are they to see their child succeed, which in turn is passed back unintentionally on to the child.” Cognitive hypnotherapist Laurie Harvey agrees: “At this time of year I experience a steep rise in families who are concerned about their teenagers’ levels of anxiety,” she says.“There is the possibility that parents’ own fears or exam failures are the cause of nagging and arguing, all of which make learning more difficult.“The stress levels in my house are massive: A-levels are causing tears and sleepless nights.I’m trying not to nag because my daughter is overwhelmed by how much she has to do,” says Helen Pine, who not only has an 18-year-old daughter but also a younger child in Year 10 revising for mock GCSEs. The exam candidates at least have something on which to focus their nervous energy – their work – but for their parents the greatest battle is containing their own concerns, and battling with memories of their childhood.Talking to your child and asking open questions like, 'What did you cover today? ’ can be less confrontational.” Better communication with your child will reduce anxiety on both sides.Dr Sharie Coombes, child and family therapist, says, “Too often, teachers and parents can appear to brush off a child’s anxiety.There is even some evidence that untidy rooms are a sign of creativity.” Be aware, also, that tidying can be employed by the child as an excuse for not working.Dr Coombes explains, “Some teenagers develop distraction activities which may include enthusiastic cleaning of bedrooms and tackling chores which would otherwise be avoided – they’ll do anything rather than sit down to revise.


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