Date
12 April 2021

Support focusing on tasks

Suggestion for implementing the strategy ‘​Support self-regulation and positive behaviour ’

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Provide sensory supports

Provide sensory supports

Sensory supports can help students with ADHD feel less anxious and frustrated. Offer these options to everyone.

  • Build in regular movement breaks.
  • Provide something tactile and quiet (a stress ball, a rubber toy) to fiddle with in class to help them to focus and pay attention.
  • Adapt the chair of a student who needs to move his feet while seated. For example, tie old pantyhose to the front two legs of the chair. Invite the student to sit on the chair, placing their feet on the pantyhose and bouncing their feet up and down.
  • Allow students to take off their shoes and wiggle their toes during times of anxiety, such as tests and exams.

Help students to focus

Help students to focus

Examples of strategies students can use to manage their behaviour and increase their attention and focus.

Classroom adjustments

Classroom adjustments

Build flexibility and supports into the classroom environment.

  • Provide physical activity breaks throughout the day to increase engagement – for example, handing out materials, running errands or dancing to music during tidy up times.
  • Break up longer tasks with short relaxation breaks to give students an opportunity to recharge and refocus.
  • Introduce Swiss balls or a mini tramp into the classroom to allow students to release tension. Movement assists concentration.
  • Support students with ADHD to alternate between different work stations or desks throughout the day.
  • Note that some students with ADHD experience light, temperature, or noise sensitivity.
  • Schedule activities, such as singing, that promote relaxation.

Maximise hands-on learning

Maximise hands-on learning

Use hands-on, practical activities to build on the particular strengths of students with ADHD and praise their effort and achievements.

Useful resources

Useful resources

Website

Ask the expert: ADHD in the classroom management strategies and student supports

Publisher: Help for ADHD

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Strategies to empower not control kids labeled ADD ADHD Chapter 3.png

Strategies to empower, not control, kids labeled ADD/ADHD (Chapter 3)

Read time: 64 min

Publisher: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Develop

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Next steps

More suggestions for implementing the strategy “​Support self-regulation and positive behaviour ”:

Return to the guide “ADHD and learning”

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