Tag Archives: High

Tips for High School Teachers with ADHD Students: Increasing Time Focused to a Task

Thank you to all of our professional educators who dedicate themselves to our children! We know how difficult it can be working with ADHD children, so here are your teacher tips for the week, brought to you by the ADHD Information Library and ADDinSchool.com. This is a sampling of over 500 classroom interventions for your use at http://www.ADDinSchool.com. Here are some tips on increasing your ADHD student’s time on task. Remember, the best interventions are the ones that will help all of your students be more successful, not just the ADHD students. One of main characteristics of students with ADD ADHD is the difficulty with sustaining attention on tasks over time. In other words, they get bored very easily, even by you.

Promote time on task, never time off task. Take time to catch the student being on task and working hard. Reward him with a simple smile or pat on the back. If you do this consistently, you will see his attention span, or time on task, increase throughout the school year, making your life easier in the long run. Your ADD ADHD student will respond better to situations that he finds stimulating and engaging. Varying the instructional medium and pace will help sustain the attention deficit student’s interest. Your ADD ADHD student would probably find lessons that emphasize “hands-on” activities highly engaging. Keeping the time required for sustained attention to a task balanced with more active learning will improve your attention deficit student’s performance. Changes in instructor’s voice level and variation in word-pacing will also increase his attention during instruction. Break long tasks into a series of shorter “sprints.” Give a minute timer to keep on his desk. Ask the attention deficit student how long he thinks it would take to perform a certain task. Let him set his own time and race against the timer. Stress accuracy instead of quantity of work. Mastery of a subject is really what you want as a teacher anyway. Computers are great for 1 on 1 work and immediate feedback. Students using medication to treat attention deficit disorder will have their optimal attention effects for methylphenidate (Ritalin) 45 minutes to 2 1/2 hours after medication. Other medications differ, and it is best to check with the physician about the time of maximum medication effects. If possible, it is best to schedule the most attention-demanding tasks for the ADD ADHD student during this medication window. Combine your verbal directions along with illustrations or demonstrations of what you want your students to do. The more ways you use to describe what you want your ADD ADHD students to do, the greater likelihood that they will actually do it. Your attention deficit student will be more successful when given directions one step at a time. When a series of instructions are given, retention beyond the first direction is difficult. Minor adjustments on the part of the teacher in giving directions will help the ADD or ADHD student a great deal. Hopefully these will help the ADHD students in your classroom to be more successful. You can learn more about Attention Deficit Hyperactivity disorder at the ADHD Information Library.