What you need to know:
- During our time, there was a lot of cheating. Learners never used to sleep because they were constantly receiving papers from various schools. Students would focus on reviewing what is coming from different schools rather than steadily revising books.
We thank God for the far He has brought our children, especially those completing their Primary Seven, Senior Four, and Senior six. The journey has not been easy. I congratulate all our candidates at their respective levels for completing their academic journey as they look forward to joining another level.
During our time, there was a lot of cheating. Learners never used to sleep because they were constantly receiving papers from various schools. Students would focus on reviewing what is coming from different schools rather than steadily revising books.
The majority would end up reading under pressure, becoming exhausted throughout the night, getting on a roll, and being tired by the time they sat for exams.
Most of the time, what they would be given was not set out in the papers. People would be panicking throughout the paper at this point.
The result was a failure in exams not because they were slow but because they put their trust in cheating, and this would disorganise them.
Others hired mercenaries to sit exams for them after paying heavily, but they did not get the expected results.
Your child has been in class for the last four years of O-Level or two years of A-Level, but they seem to want another person to sit for them. What a wasted time and money on school fees for all these years!
Let us tell our children that rather than thinking about cheating, they should stick to what they have read and work hard even at the last minute. Cheating creates unnecessary stress and anxiety. Encourage them not to dare think about waiting for what will come from elsewhere.
Pray for your children. There are wicked people who are saying that your child will not do these exams. They are working hard to ensure they fail them. Don’t believe their words.
Remember, what we occupy our minds with is what we harvest at the end of the day. Don’t think wickedly of them. Don’t be afraid; trust God, who has seen your child through so much for him or her to be able to do it in such a short period of exams.
I know most schools have already had visiting days in the last two weeks. But if the school can allow you to check on your child, please go back and encourage and pray with them. Give them more pocket money if you can.
Tell them to read hard and be relaxed. Don’t put them under pressure as a parent. What they need now are words of encouragement, not reminders of how they have been performing poorly, and you are sure he/she may not make it. That does not build their confidence and esteem during this season. You would rather remain silent instead of acting like a prophet of doom.
Request that they create a revision schedule for each free period and exam prep time. This is the best way to help someone get organised and plan for their time properly. Some may have two or more free days in between exams. This is an opportunity to read more to make up for papers they did not do well on. There is no time to relax or play around.
Some children like to isolate themselves and read alone during this time. Encourage them to participate in discussion groups. Two heads are better than one, and teamwork breeds more success than individualism.
Remind them to read the instructions and questions clearly during the exams as many times as possible without panicking or rushing before approaching them. When they have some free time after an exam, they should take some rest. This will help them to relax their mind and meditate better. They should also avoid stress at times like this.
Plan for your child’s vacation. Have in mind what they should do, especially those on a long vacation (Senior Six leavers).
They can learn a skill instead of just sitting at home. We must raise a generation that is innovative and self-sufficient. They should already have goals set for that period.
I wish all our candidate children success in their exams!
The writer is a child advocate and parenting coach.