As parents and guardians prepare their children for the Barbados Secondary School Entrance Examination (BSSEE) on May 8, they have yet another opportunity to learn "practical relaxation techniques to help reduce the levels of stress and tension which usually spiral just before, during and after the exam".????

This is according to President of the Barbados Association of Guidance Counsellors (BAGC) and Guidance Counsellor at The St. Michael School, Margaret Grant, who has urged those who did not attend the first two Parent Empowerment Workshops held April 10 and 11, to be at the final one on Monday, April 30.

The upcoming workshop is sponsored by the Barbados Public Workers Co-operative Credit Union (BPWCCU) and will be held at its headquarters on Belmont Road, St. Michael from 4.30 to 8.30 p.m.

Mrs. Grant noted that a key aim of the workshop was to help parents/guardians learn how to create a supportive structure at home rather than be continually stressed as a result of the casual approach their children may have, or the over confidence that sometimes leads to mistakes being made. They will also benefit from a medical perspective given by a representative of Sparman Clinic on the ways of nourishing children in order to stimulate the brain. They will also be taught how to detect signs of stress.

"The potential challenges of transition which their children can face as they enter secondary school will also be explored," Mrs. Grant added.

Participants will each receive a copy of the book Entering Secondary School: A Survival Kit for Students with Helpful Tips for Parents, written by BAGC President and Shaunt??e L. Walters, along with other materials.

For further information on the final workshop, interested persons should call 250-1960, or email smootheasytransitions@gmail.com. They may also register through Mrs. Grant at The St. Michael School, or at the BPWCCU branches at Belmont Road and Bridgetown.

The first two workshops, sponsored by COURTS Barbados Ltd, were held at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre.?? They featured exercises that helped parents to enter their child’s world, while expressing their feelings on aspects surrounding the 11-plus exam.

Mrs. Grant stressed: "Responses which at first included ???concerned’, ???tense’, ???nervous’ ???flat’ were transformed to ???relaxed’ and ???less stressed’ by the end of each workshop as parents engaged in hard-hitting, relevant and stimulating sessions that incorporated relaxation techniques.

"They left with a wealth of tips about how to identify and deal with stress in children; understand the impact that pubertal changes are having on their child’s psyche; how to feed children with foods that stimulate the brain; and the foods which children should avoid before and on the day of the exam, as well as warnings about internet usage and safety. It was a full package that every parent of children in Class 3 and Class 4 should embrace."


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