Tackling exam stress

Activities looking at how to support yourself and others during the exam period.

Tackling Exam Stress
Lesson plan
PSHE, Tutor time
Humanitarianism and the Red Cross, Newsthink

As many students are preparing for tests and exams in the summer term, media reports focus on the stress and anxiety that some students can feel at this time. For some, the effects of stress can be minor or even positive but research suggests that one in seven students can feel highly anxious about tests. 

This activity is designed to help learners see the signs of exam stress in themselves and their peers, and to support each other to cope, along with an example mindfulness activity.

Learning objectives

Learners will:

  • be able to recognise the signs of exam stress in others and themselves
  • gain understanding of the different coping skills
  • practise a mindfulness activity
  • develop strategies for supporting others to manage stress.

Resource overview

1. What does exam stress feel like?

Learners watch a video and discuss the signs of stress and coping skills.

2. Mindfulness activity – Watch the world go by

An introduction to mindfulness, with a breathing and visualisation activity. 

3. Helping others to overcome stress.

How to spot the signs of stress in others, and ways learners can support each other. 


This activity was written by Nick Hunter and published in May 2019.

The image of messages of young people sitting an exam © Monkey Business Images/iStock.