With the exam season here, the students in Gurgaon and across the country are busy preparing for their boards. Across schools, teachers are rushing through the lessons as the students internalise as much as they can before the big day arrives.
While long study hours and focused preparation are key to cracking the board exams, of no lesser importance is the need to stay stress-free and not push oneself too hard during this time. Keen to balance both ends, teachers across Gurgaon schools are focussing on a two-pronged approach — intensive and individualised preparation for the exams and boosting the morale of students by providing counselling, handy tips in time management and test-taking strategies.
Sudha Goyal, director, Scottish High International School, said, “We have started an optional test series for the students whereby any of them could come to school, write a test on any subject he wants and have his paper marked by the concerned teacher as well. He can also ask for guidance or help. We have also arranged for regular guidance on stress/exam management wherein the students are told to be optimistic before appearing for exams, believe in themselves, not panic, take adequate rest, have nutritious food and draw up a timetable and follow it religiously.”
Sunita Nagpal, principal, DPS Sushant Lok-1, said some of the sessions being arranged by the schools are designed primarily to help the students deal with stress and expectations in the run-up to exams. The activities include wrap-up sessions with subject experts, sharing of model test papers, special classes and individual conferences.
“The teachers share model answer scripts on different subjects in order to give the students a sense of what their exam papers should look like and how the questions ought to be attempted. Special classes by teachers — both one-on-one and in small groups — are being held for both weak students and the brighter ones in a bid to lift their performance,” Nagpal said.
The wrap-up sessions with subject experts (both in-house as well as from other schools) are aimed at putting the students in tune with the high-stress board exams and giving them tips on how to master the subjects and approach the papers. Information on the marking pattern is also shared during such sessions, she said.
The schools have also stressed on the need for individual conferences with the weak students and their parents in a bid to motivate them for the exam. They reckon such sessions will help reduce stress at home and encourage the students to take the exam without the fear of failure.
The Suncity World School will organise a session where the parents will be invited along with their wards. “The children will seek their parents’ blessings at the session and we’ll also hold a Karmic healing session for the students to help them beat stress and focus on their studies,” Rupa Chakravarty, principal, Suncity World School, said, adding that counselling on handling stress and stage fright is being done at different levels.
“Besides pre-boards, short tests are being arranged for students to help them prepare for the exam proper. These are tests are preceded by intensive revision sessions to enable gradient learning and preparation,” Chakravarty said.
Dr. Anshu Arora, principal of Amity International, Sector 43, said, “Students writing board exams need tactful handling because a lot of pressure is brought to bear on them at this time. We held counselling sessions where we invited subject experts and also dwelt at length on the styles and methods of learning. Apart from that, we have been stressing on one-to-one teaching and have even formed WhatsApp groups to make ourselves available round the clock”.
Meanwhile, Fortis Healthcare hospital on Friday launched a helpline number — +918376804102 — to deal with stress-related queries. Parents or their wards can call in between 9 am and 5 pm for advice and even consult mental health experts and behavioral psychologists.
Also, with a view to providing emotional support during exams, hospital has made its counsellor available for the parents and students.
“The counselor will be available seven days a week for guiding students and their parents,” Dr. Samir Parikh, director, department of mental health and behavioural sciences, Fortis Healthcare, said.