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6 Ways to support your child after poor exam performances

6 Ways to support your child after poor exam performances

Coping with poor exam performance

With the added pressures of producing excellent results that students today bear, the issue of exam obsession that some parents have has come under fierce debate. Have you put thought into how much pressure you put on your kids to do well academically? Here are some tips address the situation if your child is not performing well.

1. Remain calm and objective

It is not the As or Bs - the expression on parents’ faces when they read their report cards matters most to children, say experts. Children want to see their parents happy for who they are and seek their approval.

Overreacting negatively can affect your child’s self-esteem. Yelling and screaming will never help and will only create a reluctance for your kid to talk to you about anything in future. Don’t take your child’s failure personally. It is not about you, it’s about them. If you feel like you cannot remain calm, walk away until you cool down.

Remember to let your child know that even though you do not approve of the grade, you still love him or her very much. You want to foster a positive environment in which your child feels comfortable asking you for help – nobody will ask for help from an irritable parent.

2. Do not compare

How would you feel if your child compared you with his classmates' parents who may have nicer cars, houses, or jobs? Children feel just the same way, and making these comparisons may lead to their self-esteem crumbling.

Your child wants to hear that you believe he can do well in exam, and only you can encourage him. Take an interest in his interests and together explore new career options for him. Give him your support in whatever career route he chooses as long as he approaches with passion and determination.

3. Set reasonable expectations for yourself

It is important to set reasonable goals according to what your child can achieve. Not every child is going to have perfect scores or turn out to be doctors or lawyers. Each child is unique and has different aptitudes. The key is knowing the difference between your child failing because of not trying, versus failing because they excel in other areas.

4. Allow your child to rest and reflect

Yes, there is such a thing as studying too much. Studying for too long does not increase the amount of material remembered and can have the opposite effect. Ensure your child is well rested before an exam and eats a good breakfast. It will allow the brain to work at its best capacity. Help your child to develop good study habits while still maintaining a balance.

Each day, your child should have enough rest on top of study sessions and have the chance to play and spend time with the family. This balance is a lifelong skill that children can start from young.

5. Lean on positive reinforcement rather than negative reinforcement

Grounding a child by not letting him participate in school sports or other extra-curricular activities doesn’t convey the right message. Cutting out this balance in life and may push your child to be socially less-adjusted. Instead, find ways that help your child feel learn lessons in a positive light.

If punishment is what they get, your child might get more fearful of sharing their academic results with you. Help your child know that they can count on you for help so that they will continue to feel motivated to work harder after every exam.

6. Help your child learn their strengths and weaknesses

No two people learn the same way, and your child’s teacher may be using a method that works for most students but not for him. Sometimes, another approach or a differently angled explanation is all it takes for understanding.

Help your child determine which areas they have difficulty in and adjust study time to focus on them. A tool available with Geniebook is our AI that helps to identify topics that your child may need more help in. The parent app gives a great overview of topics that your child is strong in, and those that need a little more of their attention. You can easily select the weaker topics to generate a GenieSmart worksheet to help them focus on the challenging topics.

If you want to get on Geniebook, or know of anyone who could benefit from it, we are giving out a complimentary Strengths Analysis for each child. You can find out the topics within a subject that needs more focus. Sign up over at

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Suitable for primary & secondary