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Homework help for ADD and ADHD children

MONDAY, APRIL 13, 2015 10:43 AM

For doing homework or working on Common Core State Standards prep independently, attention-deficit learning disabilities, such as ADD and ADHD, can be difficult to overcome. However, learning how to study and work alone is important for gaining college- and career-readiness skills. The good news is there are ways parents can help their children succeed during independent homework and study time. Look at these ideas for keeping your children with ADD or ADHD on the right track while working at home:

Know your child's ADD-related behaviors
Tons of different behaviors are associated with ADD, so helping your children should begin by understanding each behavior they display and managing them individually. Oftentimes, children with ADD or ADHD struggle to maintain interest in something for a long period, which affects their ability to follow through and complete assignments. Or, children may exhibit attention-seeking behavior, struggle to process information quickly or have trouble staying organized. Teach your children strategies for managing each of these ADD-related issues individually. 

Create a consistent schedule
One of the best ways to manage many ADD behaviors is to provide a consistent schedule so children know exactly what to expect (and what's expected of them). Schedule homework time around any other after-school activities each day at least a week beforehand. Post the schedule in a clear and easily accessible location. Be detailed, scheduling time for children to work on assignments or subjects (for instance, an hour for English/language arts followed by an hour for math), and don't forget to incorporate regular breaks. Small rest times can help improve concentration and focus.

Stick around
Your children should learn to work independently and without help, but it's a good idea for their homework spot to be somewhere near you. That way, you'll be around to help if needed and you can keep an ear out for frustration or distraction. Begin and end homework and study time on the right foot by making sure your kids understand the instructions and assignments and by checking their work when they're finished.

Work with teachers
Many children diagnosed with ADD or ADHD may be eligible for certain learning accommodations in the classroom, such as a 504 plan (a legal plan that all teachers must accommodate). If your children have no specific 504 plan, still work with the teachers and administrators of the school to develop cooperative strategies that can help keep them engaged and academically successful.