In recent years, it seems that so many different labels are put onto children. One such label would be the ADD/ADHD label. Children with ADD/ADHD are in more ways that not similar to every other child. Children with an attention deficit want to be doing well and what is expected of them; it often times just too difficult for them to navigate. Often times ADD/ADHD can be managed through behavioral modifications, without the use of medication. Here are some strategies that can be used both at home and in the classroom. .
It is important that both teachers and families remain positive towards children with attention deficit issues, remembering they are Jesus’ lambs who need just as much love and attention as every other child, and in my cases, they need it even more! Parents and teachers need to remember that attention deficit is a disorder and not children trying to be disrespectful in most cases. It’s important that teachers and parents are willing and able to make compromises and learn to choose our battles.
Routine is very important for children dealing with attention deficit disorders. While all children thrive knowing routine and structure, this is very important for children with ADD/ADHD. Use of times, picture schedules, being organized, and keeping things simple all will help a child with an attention deficit to focus. Along the same lines, children with an attention deficit also need to know and understand clear and concise expectations. They do better with single step directions given in a clear and concise way. It’s also imperative to reinforce positive behavior. Have clear rules at home and be consistent in the way you deal with rule infractions at home.
Establish a homework routine at home. Make sure to have a quiet place that is free from distraction where they are able to work on homework. It would be beneficial for the children to have this homework time happen at the same time and in the same place each day, as much as possible. Focus on their effort in their work and less on their grades.
Children with ADHD need movement frequently, both at home and in the classroom. Make sure there are times available for them to get up and move and get their wiggles out. It is beneficial to rotate between a still activity and a movement activity. Sleep is also very important for these children. Develop good unwinding time and good sleep habits and routines.
Often times children with ADD/ADHD also struggle with making friends/building relationships as they don’t understand many social cues. As a parent, role play different situations with them, coaching them on how to deal with the different scenarios. Watch how they interact with their peers and continue to coach them as they go. Remember to offer positive reinforcements for good behaviors.
While parenting a child with attention deficit is not always easy, it’s imperative to remember that no child is perfect, and your child has been created by a loving God who made them just how they should be. Jesus took all of our imperfections to the cross and loves us despite of our flaws. Remember to pray for your children, whether they have an attention disorder or not. Pray for guidance as you seek to parent in a godly way, training your child up in the ways of the Lord. Spend time in His Word daily–for it is there that we find peace, comfort and strength that only our Savior can give. Love that precious child, and do the best parenting you can do–our Lord will bless your efforts!