Tap. Tap. Tap.
Tap. Tap. Tap.
It’s the sound of pencils nervously hitting the desks as the kids take the never ending standardized tests.
Actually, let’s be real. It’s the clicking of mice and keyboards as the kids take the never ending standardized tests. And if today’s kids are anything like me, they are unbelievably nervous.
Luckily, there are a few easy ways to take a small amount of stress out of the TEST.
Picture it: you are taking the test and it is going well. You are confident in the material. You are calm and serene. You are breathing deeply.
Seriously, my AP English teacher in high school took us through a visualization routine just like this during class and right before the test. I scored a 5.
In the weeks leading up to your child’s test, do the same thing for him. Close your eyes together and talk through the ideal test situation. Create a little ritual that is subtle, like folding her hands, to start the visualization in real life.
Use yoga to help chill out before tests. I do yoga personally before tough situations or challenging days.
Another favorite is Downward Facing Dog. I love the stretch it gives through my back and legs.
Or you could do a full sun salutation routine:
Try something crunchy, like pretzel sticks or popcorn. Have your child imagine crushing the test as they nosh on their snack. This would be a great visualization to use with the first tip!
Skipping breakfast is really not a great way to start a testing day, or really any school day. Having a full belly helps kiddos to focus on the task in front of them, instead of on their rumbly tummy. Make it special, by serving your child’s favorite foods or something with lots of sticking power. Great choices are eggs, oatmeal and Greek yogurt.
Relax the Night Before
The night before the test, have your child take a nice long bath. Make it special, with fancy bubbles or soothing music. After the bath, talk through the routine for the morning using a calm voice and relaxed language.
Ex: First, you’ll wake up and stretch. Then, you’ll come downstairs and eat your breakfast. After you are dressed, we can drive to school while we listen to (insert favorite music here). When you take the test, you’ll stretch out and take a deep breath.
You could also add in a calming yoga or stretching routine!
Pump Up the Tunes
Which singer really gets your kid going? Or calms her down? On the way to school or as she is getting ready, crank it up and rock out! Dance around your house, sing along or shoulder shimmy in the car.
You’ll get a little bit silly which can help to release stress and build up positive energy. I do this during super hard runs: a high energy song helps me to power through and keep my pace steady.
How do you help your kids destress before the test? Tell me in the comments!