Wednesday, 27 July 2016

What is ADHD? A quick look at a complex condition

I don't think that many of us really understand what it means to have an attention disability. ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) is a brain-based disorder that can make learning very difficult for a student. Children with ADHD are often described as unfocused, disorganized, inattentive, forgetful and hyper.

But does that truly paint an accurate picture?

Probably not.

My students with ADHD are also energetic, inquisitive, personable, enthusiastic, motivated and incredibly good at focus WHEN their interests are piqued. In fact, there is nothing quite like the laser focus of a student with ADHD who finally discovers their interests and strengths.

If you teach, you have students who are ADHD. And if you teach, chances are you might not feel like you know enough about this disorder to provide the kind of educational environment in which students with ADHD can thrive.

So, for the next little while at LearnAbilities I am going to post a new article, resources, and/or lesson on working with ADHD students every week. I hope to provide enough information to you so that when September rolls around and classes begin, you can start off the year confident in your ability to help all your students succeed.

For those of you trying to understand ADHD a little bit better, here is a very quick TED-Ed Lesson that you can use, customize, or share: What is ADHD? A Simple Primer. It provides a brief overview of the condition and a few resources that would prove helpful to both educators and parents.

If you want to dig a bit deeper, I also urge you to take 30 minutes and view the following video.  It's chock full of superb information and was a game-changer for me in terms of beginning to understand what it means to have ADHD.

I'll leave you with one final thought. It is a well known fact that when ADHD students are engaged in something they find interesting, many of their difficulties seem to dissipate. As educators and parents, how can we take advantage of this LearnAbility and use it to help these children thrive?

Next week: How to ADHD: A Lesson for Children, Teenagers and Parents.