Tips for Educators


Classroom Modifications & Simple Aids for Students with ADD and ADHD

In the classroom, children with ADD and ADHD may have difficulty focusing, organizing, socializing, or completing assignments. Below are some suggestions, and solutions, for the teacher to create a more ADHD-friendly learning environment.

Assignments:
When You See This Behaviour:
The student is easily distracted by classroom activity.
Try This:
Seat the student front and center, away from distractions.

When You See This Behaviour:
The student acts out in class to gain negative attention
Try This:
Seat the student near a good role model.

When You See This Behaviour:
The student is unaware of personal space or reaches across desks to talk to or touch other students.
Try This:
Increase distance between desks.

When You See This Behaviour:
The student is unable to complete their work within the allotted time.
Try This:
Allow the student extra time to complete the assigned work.

When You See This Behaviour:
The student does well at the beginning of an assignment, but quality of work decreases towards the end.
Try This:
Break long assignments into smaller parts or shorten the assignments or work periods.

When You See This Behaviour:
The student has difficulty following instructions.
Try This:
Pair written instructions with oral instructions

Organization:
When You See This Behaviour:
The student is finding it hard to keep track of papers.
Try This:
Recommend to the student and parents to use binders with dividers and folders.

When You See This Behaviour:
The student is having trouble remembering homework assignments.
Try This:
Provide the student with an assignment book or an agenda and supervise writing down of assignments.

When You See This Behaviour:
The student frequently loses their books.
Try This:
Allow the student to keep an extra set of books at home

Distractibility:
When You See This Behaviour:
The student is unable to keep up during discussions and/or note-taking
Try This:
Provide peer assistance in note-taking and encourage participation in discussions. Also encourage the parents to allow the student to use either an Alpha Smart or a laptop for note-taking.

When You See This Behaviour:
The student complains that lessons are “boring”.
Try This:
Encourage the student to be more involved in the lesson itself.

When You See This Behaviour:
The student is easily distracted.
Try This:
Cue the student to stay on task with a private signal.

When You See This Behaviour:
The student consistently turns in work with careless mistakes.
Try This:
Schedule five minutes to check answers before turning in their work.

Restlessness:
When You See This Behaviour:
The student needs to move around and is unable to sit still.
Try This:
Allow the student to run errands or to stand at times while working.

When You See This Behaviour:
The student has difficulty focusing for long periods of time.
Try This:
Provide short breaks between assignments or lessons

Behaviour:
When You See This Behaviour:
The student is constantly engaging in attention-getting behaviour.
Try This:
Ignore minor inappropriate behaviour

When You See This Behaviour:
The student fails to “see the point” of a lesson or activity.
Try This:
Increase the immediacy of rewards and consequences.

When You See This Behaviour:
The student blurts out answers or interrupts others.
Try This:
Acknowledge correct answers only when hand is raised and the student is called upon.

When You See This Behaviour:
The student requires constant reinforcement.
Try This:
Send home daily/weekly progress reports.

When You See This Behaviour:
The student requires long-term help with improving behaviour.
Try This:
Set up a behaviour contract with both the teacher and the principal.

Mood / Socialization:
When You See This Behaviour:
The student is unclear about appropriate social behaviours.
Try This:
Set up social-behaviour goals with the student and implement a reward program.

When You See This Behaviour:
The student does not work well or get along well with others.
Try This:
Encourage cooperative learning tasks with the student.

When You See This Behaviour:
The student is not respected by peers.
Try This:
Assign special responsibilities in the presence of peer group.

When You See This Behaviour:
The student clearly shows that they have low self-confidence and low self-esteem.
Try This:
Compliment positive behaviour and work. Give the student an opportunity to act in leadership role.

When You See This Behaviour:
The student appears to be lonely and (or) withdrawn.
Try This:
Encourage social interactions with classmates or plan teacher-directed group activities.

When You See This Behaviour:
The student is easily frustrated.
Try This:
Acknowledge their appropriate behaviour and their good work frequently.

When You See This Behaviour:
The student is easily angered.

Try This:
Encourage the student to walk away from angering situations and spend time talking to student.

 

For additional information or if you have any questions or are seeking an ADHD coach, please contact Karen at karen@theaddvocates.com or at 778 848 5385.