Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) affects thousands of kids in the United States alone. It is a neurobehavioral disorder that makes it difficult to focus, concentrate, sit still, and start and complete tasks. Because of these things it ultimately has a negative effect on their education as well as with family relationships and behavior.
Parents that have kids with ADHD can be frustrated, confused, and at times feel helpless. Sometimes they feel like giving up and aren’t quite sure how to help their child with behavioral and relationship issues, and their education struggles.
Here are some tips that have proven to be effective when it comes to helping them educationally.
A normal school day consists of spending six hours behind a desk. Now that most schools don’t have a recess period and many schools have removed their physical education classes, the kids don’t have enough time to just unwind. Allowing them thirty minutes to go outside and play before starting any school assignments, will help them get the wiggles out, then they’ll be able to concentrate better. In addition to having a pre-homework break, offering the child a snack will also give his brain the little boost of energy it needs to focus and stay on task.
Because children with ADHD aren’t able to pay attention, the homework area should be some place that is quiet. It should be a good learning environment that provides peace and freedom from noise and a lot of activity. The dining table is the usual place where children do their homework (at least it is in my home), but if your house has a “great room”, the space is open and the television can be a distraction. Setting up a personal work space will help keep the noise to a minimum which will really help the child concentrate. It’s also good to have this area equiped with all the supplies needed so your child doesn’t have to go looking for them.
Having structure is important when it comes to work or learning. Having a daily routine can lessen the frustration and give the child a sense of security. For example, designate a specific time to do homework, play time, dinner time, and bedtime. A consistent routine will help the child stay on track.
When an adult looks at their “to do” list, it can be overwhelming. Meetings, grocery shopping, appointments, and errands make an already tired adult feel exhausted. The same thing goes for children. If multiple assignments are an everyday occurrence, giving the child one assignment at a time will alleviate their stress and feelings of being overwhelmed. They can focus on one assignment and not feel bombarded with a heavy work load.
When we do a good job we all need and deserve a pat on the back. Giving words of encouragement and praise will lift the child’s spirit and will motivate them if they are having a hard time getting into the swing of things.
Parenting a child with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder requires patience, persistence, and understanding. It’s easy to get frustrated and it’s easy to give up, but always remember that the child is probably more frustrated than anyone. They too want to succeed and encouraging them and showing them love during the trials will foster their success.