This Is How We Prepare for Finals


It is hard to believe that May is already here. The end of the year brings mixed emotions and a long to-do list, with one of the most crucial tasks being: study for finals. This month we are talking with parents to find out how they help their high school students stay organized and prepared for these exams.

Meet Tom.

Tom is the dad of two high school students. His son is a junior and his daughter is a freshman.

What’s the vibe like around your home this month? How do your kids feels about final exams?

Everyone is definitely getting excited about summer, but May is pretty busy around here. My son doesn’t really stress out much about finals. It is still newer for my daughter, so I think she makes a big deal about. She also likes staying organized, so she is on top of all her studies.

What study strategies work for your children?

My son definitely likes to study alone, and he uses the study guides and his classroom notes. He is a good student, so I don’t worry too much about his preparation. In the past, some of his teachers have hosted review sessions after school, and he finds those to be helpful.

Like I mentioned earlier, my daughter is especially organized and plans out what she’ll study in advance. She uses notes card, study guides, practice tests, whatever she can get her hands on. She likes to study with people, and her tutor is really helpful to review with. I think it is beneficial for her to talk through the material.

Do you help your children prepare for finals?

I mostly leave it up to them to study, but we talk about what different teachers are expecting and what review guides they’ve been given. I ask them about their study plans and how they feel about each exam. I don’t want to make them any more anxious so I stay pretty relaxed about it all. I focus on how hard they’ve worked all year and not put too much emphasis on one test.

Meet Julia.

Julia is mom of three boys - a 7th grader, a freshman, and a senior.

What’s the vibe like around your home this month? How do your kids feels about final exams?

May has an exciting vibe because summer is just around the corner. My boys are involved in baseball and track, so we stay extra busy with all that. Finals can cause stress in our home because I can tell they are feeling done with school, especially with the nice weather. I have noticed that the homework assignments die down, so they do have more time that should be used for preparing for exams. (But I don’t think that happens as it should.)

What study strategies work for your children?

One of my boys is more independent when it comes to studying. He uses study guides, his classroom notes, and practice tests. My other son has a harder time organizing his time and starting early. They will both cram right up to the last minute.

Do you help your children prepare for finals?

I always offer to help quiz them or go over anything. Sometimes they take me up on this, and other times it is easier to study on their own. I do my best to create quiet time and space to study with phones and TV off. I also make sure they get to bed early and have a good breakfast the morning of exams.

Thank you, Tom and Julia. Best of luck to all our students as they prepare for finals and finish off another great school year!

Written by Joy Becker, Mentoring Coordinator and Author of 44 & Oxford