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10 Things To Do Before School Starts

ADHD 589If your child has learning challenges, a successful school year begins in July, not the first day of classes. Set up your child for success by reviewing his IEP or 504 Plan, developing organization systems with him, communicating with teachers, and more during the summer months.

Here are a few of the ten ideas offered by in ADDitude magazine:

Create a home staging area. Choose an area near the door and equip it with open cubbies/shelving, baskets, and/or hooks. Make this the home for books, homework, backpack, notes, sports bag, keys, lunches, and other school-related articles. Hang a large whiteboard to help her remember tasks and items. An alarm clock or timer will help her get out the door in time.

Organize school systems together. Determine your child’s biggest organizational challenges and come up with solutions before classes begin. Visit an office supply store and check out the materials designed for organizing papers, supplies, and time. Choose systems that will be easy enough for your child to manage at school and at home. For example, if you know he loses his homework, buy pocket folders and label them for work to be completed on the left, finished work on the right.

If he can’t find books in his locker, buy a locker shelf and encourage him to organize books according to his daily class schedule.

Find a tutor or homework helper. If you feel that your child might benefit from homework help, find some now. Try out several candidates for personality fit and skill level, and let your child make the final decision. Don’t choose a tutor who encourages dependence in your child. The goal is to give him ways to meet challenges on his own.

Set learning goals together.  Sit down with your child and brainstorm about the goals of the upcoming school year. Let him talk; you listen. Focus on strengths, as well as on areas that need improvement. Make goals attainable. Meeting goals empowers a child to meet tougher challenges later.

For a younger child, have her answer questions like “I want to learn…”, “I want to avoid…”, “My strengths and weaknesses are….”

Plan your child’s after-achool activities. Would your child benefit from more physical activity? Consider sports or dance. Does he need to practice focusing? Why not sign him up for martial arts or chess club? Try to build on your child’s routines with activities that will enhance his strengths and provide opportunities for working on challenging tasks. Studies show that for a child with ADHD, scheduling exercise into the day increases her focus and sharpens her attention in school and at home.

Excerpted from “10 Things To Do BEFORE School Starts” in ADDitude magazine. Read the remainder of the 10 tips in the full article online.

Source: ADDitude | 10 Things To Do BEFORE School Starts, https://www.additudemag.com/slideshows/things-to-do-before-school-starts | Copyright © 1998 – 2019 New Hope Media LLC

Clinical Services Coordinators can arrange a free 30 minute Care Consultation so you can explore options with an expert. We invite you to call or email our Clinical Services Coordinators at 650.688.3625 or careteam@chconline.org to set up an initial Parent Consultation appointment.

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