Classroom Management Help Now:
Attention-Grabbing ADHD Strategies
Need some new behavior management strategies for your children and youth who have ADHD? Here are some of our favorites that you may find to be refreshingly different from what you are using now. All of these interventions are not only appropriate for your youth and children who have ADHD, but these interventions may also be essential training for any youngster. Remember: It's normal for many children and youth to be high energy and in motion. Because of that, these interventions should be offered as basic training for all students.
This article is written by Youth Change Professional Development Workshops' Director, Lead Trainer Ruth Herman Wells, M.S. (pictured above.) You're in good hands. Ruth has developed lively, much more successful strategies for ADHD that you're going to be able to use right away. These ADHD strategies are taken from Ruth's popular Breakthrough Strategies Workshop.
Awesome ADHD Strategies
Show Both the Problem and Goal Behaviors
Children with ADHD may be comfortable, but the adults who work with them, may be uncomfortable with their speed. When you tell ADHD-affected children to "stop it," they may not be clear what the problem is, even though it may be obvious to you. To give ADHD-affected children a picture of both the problem behavior and goal behavior, consider using these terms that paint a picture:
► Slow-Rolling Behavior: This conveys a rate of motion that may be too slow to work well.
► Speed-Racing Behavior: This term conveys a rate of motion that may be too fast to work well.
► Pace-Setting Behavior: This conveys a rate of motion that isn't too fast or too slow, but just right.
Follow-up: After students understand the terms, have them demonstrate of each term. Or, students can create pictures explaining each term, and the pictures can be posted on the wall as visual reminders.
Other options: For younger students, use puppets to practice pace-setting behaviors, then discuss the benefits and hazards of each type of behavior in the jobs and businesses that interest your students.
Teach About Attention-Grabbers
ADHD children– and plenty of other children– don't know how to manage distractions. Use a loud radio and other attention-getting devices to create distractions, then teach your students to identify and rectify the problem. You can assist them to identify what to say, when to say it and how to say it. For example, students can be assisted to develop specific phrases to alert teachers that they need help to manage a distraction. Consider having your students use the words "attention-grabbers" as a memorable way to describe distractions.
Follow-up: Have students identify potential attention- grabbers in their future work places and how to manage those distractions. Be sure to have your youngsters identify what can happen if work place distractions are not properly managed, especially for occupations like pilot, doctor, rap singer, and hair stylist.
Thoroughly Teach Paying Attention
ADHD children often need lots of repetition and practice before acquiring new skills. To teach ADHD-affected students and others how to better pay attention, use metal and a magnet to illustrate how students' eyes should be "stuck" on the teacher. Next, have students practice having their eyes, ears and mind "stuck" on the teacher.
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Teach Hand Raising Before You Expect It
If you require hands to be raised prior to speaking, carefully teach the skill before expecting it. Show the desired way to perform hand raising and also problematic ways. Teach students that waving around your arms is "windshield wiper arms" then ask them for "flagpole arms." Demonstrate both methods to ensure comprehension. Next, be sure to practice appropriate hand raising.
Follow-up: Have students identify jobs that often require workers to have permission prior to speaking. Include jobs like lawyers in court, pilots on the radio, and office workers in a meeting. Ask students to identify the consequences these workers may face for frequent talk-outs. Assist students to view hand raising as essential preparation for their future jobs.
No Statues Allowed
It is normal for children and teens to be active. Whether or not a child lives with ADHD, many children are ill-suited to sit extremely still for 50 to 90 minutes at a time. Children and teens make lousy statues. So instead of requiring your students to sit still, consider negotiating what motion you'll allow. So, you might not permit a child to bang his feet on the chair in front of him, but you might allow doodling or foot tapping that doesn't disturb others. Assist the child to practice doing the negotiated behavior so that the foot tapping isn't stomping, for example.