Executive Functioning Disorder impacts up to 90% Of ADD/ADHD students impairing their ability to reach their full potential and crippling their success later in life.
As parents of a struggling student with ADD/ADHD, we want the best for our students.
The missing link
But what if we are missing something important? What if there is ONE thing we could teach them that could radically improve their opportunities that we aren’t currently doing?
As the mother of an ADD/ADHD student, I was not aware of Executive Functioning Disorder (EFD). I assumed all the disorganization, lack of planning and time blindness was just ADHD. And some of it is ADHD, but some of it is linked to Executive Functioning Disorder. They are very similar, but not synonymous.
ADHD similar to EFD, but not the same
Both make it very difficult to complete tasks and stay organized. EFD is a broader condition that affects attention, learning, social, organizational and time management skills that can impact both ADD/ADHD and non ADD/ADHD individuals.
Understanding Executive Functioning skills
Executive Functioning Skills enable us to plan, focus our attention, remember instructions and manage multiple tasks. ADHD/ ADD students often lack these skills and are more prone to have EFD. Without a directed focus on learning these skills many students will suffer in school, college and in their careers.
Making a difference
So what can we do to help our students manage their EFD and give them the best chances for future success?
These are some tips from the National Center for Learning Disabilities.
1. Take a step by step approach to work. Give 1 assignment, let them complete it, then give the second, let them complete it etc.
2. Rely on visual aids to get organized, like reminder notes, agenda and other written information.
3. Use tools like time organizers, computers or watches with alarms to help relieve time blindness.
4. Make schedules and review several times a day to stay on track.
5. Plan for transition times and shifts in activities.
WebMD suggests making a checklist for getting through assignments. For example: get out a pencil, put name on paper, put due date on paper, read directions, etc. They also recommend meeting with a teacher to review work on a regular basis and using a tutor to help sharpen the Executive Functioning Skills.
There are many books on study skills and courses that parents can use to help their students learn these skills.
Kimberly Mullins is the owner of the Tutoring Club of St Johns and the mother of an ADHD and EFD student. Her own struggles with her daughter have driven her to create programs to support other students with similar challenges.
Tutoring Club of St Johns also offers an online Study Skills course that focuses on Executive Functioning Skills. This course focuses students on how to get organized and stay organized, set effective goals, establish priorities, take notes and study more effectively. While working with a coach, students learn the skills and are guided through using the skills.
At the Tutoring Club every student receives personalized attention from their tutor. The focus is to help the student identify how they learn best.
The Tutoring Club creates confident life long learners. www.tutoringclub.com/stjohnsfl 904-230-2855 firstname.lastname@example.org