The Impact of ADHD at School
ADHD at school can impact learning in many ways, starting with executive functions. Executive Functions are the conductors of the mind/body orchestra. First, they are responsible for organizing yourself, starting or stopping an activity, and controlling emotions. More, they are responsible for managing time, anticipating challenges, remaining flexible, asking for help, and much more. Executive Functions are impaired or developmentally delayed in the ADHD brain, so self-management is more difficult.
The Tangible Impact of ADHD at School
For a child with ADHD, poor Executive Function can make it extremely difficult to…
- Remember or record relevant class information
- Keep track of specific assignments
- Gather and organize materials needed to complete tasks
- Be able to follow all the directions associated with a specific assignment
- Complete and remember to turn assignments in on time
The Emotional Impact of ADHD at School
Because kids with ADHD often struggle with impulse control, hyperactivity and emotional regulation, they can become easily frustrated at school. They may …
- Have trouble waiting their turn
- Be hypersensitive to feedback or perceived criticism and lash out at others
- Develop a negative self-image from being ‘different,” leading to a higher risk of anxiety, depression or self-harming behaviors
- Annoy or distract others resulting in teacher concern and potential discipline
In addition, a lack of self-awareness and focus can contribute to a child’s difficulty with…
- Making and keeping friends
- Behaving appropriately in peer interactions
- Reading social cues appropriately
How to Create a Plan for Your Child
An Individualized Education Plan (IEP) or 504 Plan helps support kids who learn differently. Knowing how to integrate ADHD support into your child’s learning plan will help some of the potential impacts. This is really important because more than 2/3 of kids with ADHD at school also have additional diagnoses such as LD (learning disability), anxiety, Tourette syndrome or more.
Students should receive a thorough evaluation (provided by the school or a private psychologist). This is the first step to a strong 504 or IEP – all to ensure school success. ADHD at school doesn’t have to be a major obstacle as long as everyone is on board and ready to help your child.
We help parents who are frustrated with schools and the world of special education.
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