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Creative Helpers to Help Individuals Living with Focus Challenges

Keeping Focus is a Collaborative Effort
Keeping Focus is a Collaborative Effort

Expand Learning Settings

Create instruction arrangements where learners are positioned away from potential distractions, hallway, doors, windows, or objects that light up or make noise easily. Surround them with messages, visuals, and others who exhibit healthy behavior, with hopes of them learning from praised behavior, language and routines. Equip yourself and the learning environment in such a way that you can circulate freely and engage —make sure to give praise, verbal cues, and ask open ended questions as needed to reinforce positive redirection and responses. Create enthusiasm in your presentation (s): share a funny story, encourage learners to make a prediction. Use dry erase boards for responses, music, or instruments to maintain attention. Invite a guest who connects with lesson’s goals. Whenever possible, plan lessons around interest and relevant topics. Provide multiple teaching methods. Create pledges of the week that share a summary of the week’s lessons; Use candy or popcorn to help solve problems during instructional guided practice.

At Home

Make learning active. Encourage multiple resources to be involved with homework. Have learner to have more than one resource to turn to for help. For example, a dictionary and an older sibling are two resources. Present strategies to help with reading comprehension such as underlining reading materials with colored pencils or draw cartoons to illustrate vocabulary words. Teach self-monitoring. Help learner become aware of the things that cause distraction; questions to answer when distractions happen; With consistency, time, and practice, student will get to know what being distracted feels likes and looks likes for them; each will recognize when their attention is going away. Through direct classroom experience, learners with focus and engagement challenges benefit from modeled behavior of reachable goals through participating and focusing on a lesson.

Play attention-boosting games. Select games such as Memory, Simon Says and musical chairs, where listening and focus are the key to play and tie in the content that is of the learning goal! Research suggests changing the location where games are played create positive outcomes. Reports state students who play memory-rooted games have good outcomes. Encourage different learning settings. Spend time outdoors. Recent studies link time spent outside, especially in natural environments, with improved concentration. For example, students can create “prep practice” before beginning a student group project such as taking a walk, doing a breathing exercise, or a brief stretching routine.

Maintain water intake every day. Water creates a productivity boost. Water provides the body with fluid to have refreshment, alertness, and concentration. Additionally, a study conducted at University of East London, concluded students who bring water into exams may improve their grade by keeping them hydrated. The study suggested H20 promotes clearer thinking.

Practice a Sleep Routine. According to the National Sleep Foundation, sleep is essential for a person’s health and well-being. When an individual is well-rested, it often reaps productive results in several life areas.

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