Providing mental health services for children, adolescents, and families.


3 Tips to Relieve Your Child’s MSA Stress

Category: Stress and Anxiety


Even if your child is academically prepared for the MSA (Maryland School Assessment), it shouldn’t take a clinical child psychologist to tell you that he will still feel stressed. Test-taking logistics can be as taxing as the questions themselves.
As a parent, it’s your job to help your child feel calm and confident every day. If you’re considering family therapy as a way to solidify your bond, that’s a great option. But how can you prepare your child for a test that is days away?

Here’s how to prevent the most common stressors:

Arrive early to school. Proper administration of the MSA requires all students to arrive on time. Your child will feel nervous and embarrassed if he is tardy on test day. Whether you drive your child to school or he rides the bus, make sure he’s at his desk early. Leave a buffer zone to account for possible heavy traffic and inclement weather.

Remember the required materials. Nothing will be more stressful for your child than forgetting to bring the required materials. Go over the requirements early so your child is prepared. Don’t send him to school with just one pencil; provide him with at least three sharpened No. 2s in case he loses one and breaks another.

Prepare not only mentally, but also physically. Even if your child knows the test content backward and forward, he will lose that confidence if he feels sleepy or sick. Prevent this unnecessary stress by feeding him nutritious foods and making sure he gets at least nine hours of sleep each night in the days leading up to the test.

Remember, your child will most likely feel stressed even if he has diligently completed all preparatory assignments. Luckily, most logistical stressors are preventable. Prepare now so that your child can demonstrate his full academic potential on test day.

Family therapy has been associated with higher academic achievement. To learn more about family therapy, call The Family Center today at 410-531-5087.

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