A child with ADHD is expected to have difficulty in school as he will be required to sit still, quietly listen, concentrate, pay attention, and follow instructions. Their brain power is there, but the difficulty to focus hinders their ability to finish their tasks. “Typically, jumpiness, inattentiveness, and impulsiveness, behaviors thought to be signs of ADHD, first turn up in a classroom situation,” says Marilyn Wedge Ph.D. Their hyperactivity and too much energy make them incapable of understanding the instructions and they may disrupt the class. What others do not realize is that they do not do it on purpose, but just that their brains would not let them.
Challenges In School
Sometimes a teacher is not trained enough to handle a kid with ADHD, which leaves the kid staring out the window, especially when the lesson is not of the kid’s interest. It is hard to handle kids with ADHD especially when inside the confines of the classroom.
They can be adorable when on medication, but a total nuisance when not. Children with ADHD are balls of bouncing energy, which makes teaching them not easy. And of course, they are expected to get scolded, have low grades, suffer from the teasing of peers, and end up developing low self-esteem.
The school psychiatrist can help your kid succeed in school. He or she is the trained person who can handle your kid’s symptoms of hyperactivity and inability to stay focused and can teach your kid some techniques on how to handle the irritability and overexcitement he feels whenever the class has an activity to do. Students with ADHD also suffer from
- Trouble following instructions
- Forgetting homework assignments
- Problem with motor skills with difficulty in note-taking; their handwriting is hard to understand
- Inability to work with a group and hinders the group from accomplishing the task faster
Programs The Psychiatrist Has For Your Kid
Psychiatrists say that the most effective tool to help a kid with ADHD is a positive attitude. According to psychologists Jeanne Segal, Ph.D. and Melinda Smith, M.A., “ADHD specialists can help you develop an effective treatment plan for your child. Since ADHD responds best to a combination of treatments and strategies, consulting several specialists is advisable.” Make the kid feel that you are his partner by encouraging him with words like “Let’s find ways to get your project done.” Remind him that you are expecting good behavior and quality work from him, and make sure to motivate him with reward and praises whenever he delivers a good job.
Handle Disruptive Behavior
It will be useful to work out some warning signals with the student with ADHD – either a hand signal, shoulder squeeze, or a note on his desk. If you have to remind the child about his behavior, be sure to do it privately so as not to embarrass him.
Keep Him Focused
Have him sit away from windows and doors. If possible, have him seated near the teacher’s desk. Be sure to create a quiet space free of distraction during exams and study hours.
With regards to instructions, give it to him one at a time and repeat as needed. If there are difficult tasks to be done, work on it first or early in the day. Use visuals like charts and pictures to aid him to have an easy understanding of the instructions. Make an outline to organize the information and make it easier for him to digest.
Exams and Works
Because it’s hard to keep his attention for an extended period, make tests with fewer items that he can finish. You may give frequent short quizzes rather than long ones. Create an exam in a format in which he does best, either orally or filling in the blanks. Be considerate of ADHD students by accepting late works and giving partial credits for partial work.
The school environment is a challenge for a kid with ADHD. A teacher together with the school psychiatrist can guide the kid to succeed and survive all the challenges and difficulties, and one way for the child to get his way through is to assist him in organizing not only his thoughts but his notebooks where he puts lecture notes, assignments, and other important reminders. You can also help him by color-coding the notebooks for each subject.
Teachers must work closely with the school psychiatrist on implementing effective methods to help a kid with ADHD understand and focus on school tasks. It is of importance that a kid learns to read signals or body language to put him back to work, follow instructions by teaching him to be organized and keeping each instruction simple. You can use a chart or visual aid to assist you in keeping his attention on what you are saying. It’s okay to remind the kid to stay on task whenever you see his thoughts wandering somewhere else.
A kid’s success in school is in the hands of his parents, teachers, and the school psychiatrist. Being able to introduce and implement these methods mentioned above efficiently will assure a confident and bright future ahead for your kid. “By providing some of these assistive technologies, parents and teachers are setting the stage for greater academic success,” says psychologist Dr. Matthew Lynch.