The views of this article are the perspective of the author and may not be reflective of Confessions of the Professions.
As a teacher, you may have students who come to school daily struggling with ADHD. It can be difficult to watch them fall behind their peers, and knowing how to help can be overwhelming. However, there are ways that you can support your students and help them succeed. Here are some of them.
As a teacher, you play an important role in supporting students with ADHD. One way you can do this is by seeking out resources and supports that can help you better understand and meet the needs of your students.
For example, an ADHD chair is a common accommodation for students with ADHD. These chairs allow students to move around and release excess energy while remaining focused on their work. They can also help to increase alertness and reduce fidgeting.
Remember that each student with ADHD is different and will respond to different approaches. Some students may need more structure and help to stay on task, while others may need more freedom and flexibility. Take the time to get to know each student individually and find what works best for them.
Establishing rules and expectations early on in the school year is important as reviewing them frequently. Let students know what is expected of them and the consequences of not following the rules.
Students with ADHD often have difficulty organizing their thoughts and materials. Please help them by providing a designated place to keep their school supplies and homework, setting regular deadlines for completing assignments, and breaking down tasks into smaller steps.
Using a planner or calendar can be helpful for students with ADHD. It can help them keep track of upcoming assignments and tests and remind them of due dates. Please encourage your students to use one and check in regularly to ensure they are using it effectively.
Please make sure you regularly communicate with parents or guardians about how their child is doing in school. This will help them to be aware of any struggles their child is facing and work with you to find solutions. Again, you will not miss out on anything important in the child’s ADHD treatments.
Kids with ADHD often have difficulty focusing for long periods. Encourage them to take frequent breaks throughout the day, even if just for a few minutes at a time. This will help them recharge and stay focused later on.
Some students with ADHD may struggle with traditional classroom activities such as note-taking or lectures. Modify activities when necessary to be more accessible and engaging for these students. For example, allow students to work in pairs or groups instead of individually or give them more time to complete tasks.
One way to do this is by giving clear and concise instructions. This is because students with ADHD may have difficulty following complex or multi-step instructions. By keeping your instructions simple and easy to understand, you can help to reduce frustration and ensure that students can complete tasks successfully.
It can be helpful to provide visual cues along with verbal instructions. This could involve using pictures, diagrams, or even written notes to help students grasp the concepts you are teaching. Using various strategies, you can create a supportive learning environment for all students.
Give them positive reinforcement whenever a student with ADHD succeeds at a task or demonstrates good behavior. This could involve verbal praise, stickers, or other rewards. By using positive reinforcement, you can help to encourage students and promote desired behaviors.
If you struggle to support a student with ADHD effectively, seek professional help. This could involve meeting with the school counselor or psychologist or contacting outside resources such as therapy or support groups. By getting professional help, you can ensure that the student gets the best possible care and support.
Students with ADHD can be successful in school with the right support. As a teacher, you can provide this support using strategies like those listed above. Using these strategies, you can create a positive and supportive learning environment for all students.