Teaching Misunderstood Kids and Their Parents
Overview of ADHD:All of the above written by Laurie Hagberg, 1998
What is ADHD:Teaching Students Who Have ADHD:
What ADHD is NOT:
ADHD is linked to:
Students with ADHD cannot always change their behavior--I, as a teacher, can change mine.
To respect all students equally means to teach each student individually.
To teach students individually requires acknowledgement of how individuals think. (An interesting and informative book on this topic is Thinking In Pictures by Temple Grandin, a writer who is autistic)
Students with ADHD may appear to not pay attention at all, but more often it's that they are "hyper-attentive," taking in all of the stimuli around them simultaneously.
"Different" behavior is not necessarily misbehavior.
Some people are quieter when they are standing.
The impulsive, off-the-subject comment or question often reveals a mind at work.
The impulsive, critical comment or interruption must not be taken personally.
Students are individuals with a variety of interests and want to learn--even those who seem least motivated or those "not working to their potential."
Use multi-sensory approaches to giving information.
Incorporate small-group discussion prior to whole-class discussion to allow the impulsive students to have their say in a less distracting manner (you'll find that often what they have to say is valuable, when presented at the "right" time).
Begin and/or end class sessions with an activity such as journal writing or silent reading to help the ADHD students transition into or out of the previous activity.
Establish a daily routine--warn / advise students of changes in the routine ahead of time.
Provide students with 3x5 note cards on which they can jot down questions they have for you during a lecture or film, when perhaps speaking out would not be appreciated.
Seat students with ADHD near your desk--close enough that they can talk with you spontaneously (though with the understanding that you will not always allow talking).
Use the buddy-system--for yourself!
Be kind and discreet.
Meet with parents regularly. Assure the parent that you want to help their child and you want to work with them as a team.
Let the parents talk. You may be the only other person who sees what difficulties this parent has been living with, as you spend extended time daily with their child.
A thought: the behavior you must understand and adjust to and cope with and if possible change, during the next 9 months is what the parent has lived with since that child was born. Even so, this parent loves this child -- and trusts teachers to do the same.
is hearing a student say,
"Thank you for understanding me."
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