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5 Tips to Promote Academic Success in Kids with ADHD

By: Maria Werner-- 2016-01-22 7:05 am --

While teachers try their best to provide exceptional education to students, the large class sizes make it difficult to offer the one-on-one care children need. To further complicate matters, about 11 percent of school-aged children struggle with ADHD, which makes it difficult for them to focus and sit still in the classroom. There are a variety of easy and cost-effective ways that schools can provide better care to ADHD children, allowing children to enjoy improved focus, fewer behavioral problems, and enhanced academic performance.

  1. Offer fidget toys. ADHD causes overstimulation, which results in increased hyperactivity, racing thoughts, and difficulty focusing. In turn, children with ADHD are prone to fidgeting, which can often be disruptive in the classroom. Fidget toys are small toys, like stress balls or textured fabric, that satisfy the tactile needs of children, while enabling them to fidget in a way that doesn’t disrupt the classroom. Research has actually shown that fidgeting can promote focus in ADHD children, so fidget toys are important for teachers to always have on hand.
  2. Encourage doodling. Doodling can actually improve the attention span of children with ADHD. Teaching children to doodle as they take notes, such as drawing numbers in creative ways or using a variety of colorful pens, has been shown to enhance their notetaking abilities and increase their knowledge retention.
  3. Walk, move, and stretch. It isn’t just children with ADHD that grow restless. Many children often begin fidgeting in their desks. Teachers should implement a periodic stretch break where children can get up and walk around for a few minutes, allowing them to stretch their legs, get their blood flowing, and refocus their thoughts.
  4. Improve memorization with music. Many children can remember things more easily if they have music to accompany it. While a child may have difficulty remembering the names of all 50 states, they can belt out all of the lyrics to their favorite Justin Bieber album with ease. When children are presented with difficult memorization tasks in the classroom, coming up with catchy songs can dramatically improve learning retention.
  5. Encourage kinesthetic learning. Children with ADHD tend to be very tactile and visual learners. Kinesthetic learning, also called tactile learning, can improve the memorization and retention for children with ADHD. By incorporating physical objects, arts and crafts, experiments, field trips, and hands-on activities, children will be more engaged in the work and will retain the knowledge more easily. They’ll also remain calmer and more focused on the task when they’re engaged both physically and mentally.

With one teacher up against a room full of hyper kiddos, keeping children on task is a recurring challenge. It becomes particularly difficult when children struggle with ADHD, which increases hyperactivity and decreases focus. Through the use of fidget toys, music, movement, and hands-on activities, children will remain calmer and more engaged, while understanding and retaining knowledge more easily. Click here to explore a variety of craft items and toys that can encourage kinesthetic learning and help to build a classroom experience that’s conducive to education.