With all the important year-end exams such as PSLE, GCE N-, O- and A-Level examinations rolling up in these upcoming months, we’re quite sure it’s crunch time, for hunkering down, planning and cramming… for the parents (oh, and that goes for the children, too). They have to encourage (or nag), provide ample food and drink, plan out the revision regime – you know, the typical parenting stuff. But, given the current Phase 2 (Heightened Alert) measures, the kids will have to spend more time studying at home. So, if you’re a parent, then you would know there’s much more to think about this time round – specifically, how to make your home environment a more conducive one so that your exam candidate can be more productive and prep better. Don’t need to worry; here are 4 simple steps you can take to make your home a top study centre for your family’s school-goers.
Shed Some Right Light
Light matters to reading right. Too dim or dark (because of closed windows or curtains), and your kid will feel more induced to sleep and also, feel more eye strain. Too bright (think overly harsh overhead, fluorescent lighting), and their eyes will feel uncomfortable. There are a couple of fuss-free ways to make sure your child’s study area is lit well enough to optimise his or her focus. One, just let in the sunshine; open your windows to let natural lighting illuminate the space. Some studies have shown that students perform better on standardised tests in classrooms where more daylight is allowed in. Also, having fresh air circulating through the room is healthy and can help refresh your child during his or her study session.
Two, opt for a desk lamp that is flexible and utilises cooler white to natural daylight bulb lighting so that glare, reflections and shadows are minimised and there’s ample task lighting for reading, writing or typing so that your fidgety student can avoid eyestrain and remain focused. Lifestyle gifts and home décor store, Klosh, offers a range of 3M task lighting table lamps that are suited for your night owl’s evening study sessions. Pick from a kid-friendly 3M LED Polarizing Task Light K1610 ($149, in black or white) that weighs just 750 grams; the 3M Cappello LED Polarizing K1710 ($259, in light Mint or light pink) that comes with a cute character remote control switch; or a top-of-the-line 3M LED Polarizing Task Light P1709 ($329, in black or white) with a 7-level LED brightness adjustment feature, that you can also use to brighten your own workspace at home.
Fun Can Make Or Break, Break Time
Make their break time fun, or at least one that they can look forward to. The last thing you should do is to turn them into free helpers by having them carry out a household activity like folding and putting away dry laundry – you might like doing these kinds of activities because you think you can spend some productive quality time time together with your loved one and have an extra pair of helping hands. But your kid might just regard them as unrewarding chores. If they do happen to find joy in helping you perform tasks such as watering the plants or cleaning the car, then by all means, let them. Lucky them, lucky you.
Regardless, do discuss and settle on what kind of break time they would like to have. It could be playing on their handheld device or with the family pet, WhatsApping their bestie, or even just snacking on their fave titbits and chilling out on the sofa. You get to know them better, what motivates them and even have a measure of parental control over their preferred activity, while they are kept happy and motivated to keep on trucking. It’s a win-win.
Feed Them Snacks
When it comes down to the grind, brain food’s important– literally, and not just the information that your kid needs to cram into their noggins. Reward them with some snacks for all their hard work – the healthy kind that helps keep up their energy and stamina, for their grey cells to function as they should, and of course, to make sure their physical health and well-being are taken care of properly. Choice and moderation is key (no binge eating and no skipping of proper meals for snack time); a small serving of fruits (bananas are tasty and a great source of energy) or a couple of slices of whole grain breads (higher in nutrients, vitamins and fibre content than white bread) should be enough for their break time or whenever they feel peckish while studying.
Granola’s also a good source of iron, zinc, magnesium, vitamins E and B, and fibre, that typically contains a mixture of oats, nuts, seeds and dried fruit. Try any of Kintry’s four flavourful halal-certified artisanal granola snack packs: Pandan Gula Melaka, Chocolate Hazelnut, Salted Butter Caramel or Honey Quinoa (without nuts). All are handmade from scratch, available in 60g ($3.30) and 200g ($8.90) packs to share together with loved ones, and are totally delish when served with some healthy yoghurt or milk, or even with ice cream if you feel kiddo deserves that extra nice-y, icy treat. Just watch out for the sugar; you don’t want too much for health’s sake, or risk your kid going on a sugar high.
BONUS: SAFRA members enjoy 10% off sitewide with a minimum spend of $50 and 10% off Halal-certified snacks with no minimum spend at Kintry Singapore. Click here and here, respectively, for more information.
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