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ADD and homeschooling?

Posted by on Mar. 21, 2013 at 11:40 PM
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2 moms liked this

 My youngest has a few health issues.  The big one right now is abdominal migraines which leave her in daily pain.  We've been able to get the pain to a manageable level, althrough they aren't sure she'll be pain-free until she finally outgrows this.  Anyway, she doesn't often live on the same plane as the rest of us.  She's here, but not, if that makes sense.  We thought at first that it was a coping mechanism, that it was easier to check out than to deal with the pain.  Now that the pain level is consistently low, the fact that she still checks out is a bit worrisome.  The doctor thinks it could be ADD, that she just has trouble focusing, and we'll do some testing to see if that's the case. Does anyone else have a child who does this? How do you help them focus on their school work? She gets math pretty easily but has a lot of trouble focusing on getting the work done.  Typically it takes two days to get through a workbook page of 20 questions.  (She's 8)  Reading is hard because while she gets the words, she can't always remember the context or the story because she just can't focus on it for long.

by on Mar. 21, 2013 at 11:40 PM
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QueenCreole313
by on Mar. 22, 2013 at 7:09 AM
3 moms liked this

My son is ADHD and diagnosed with anxiety. This is part of the reason we decided to homeschool because I was feeling pressured to medicate him. I think first mom, you should read up on add. It has helped me a lot. But mom to mom, what has helped me is that I had to find out how my son learned. He is very visual. He hates workbooks. He has to select his own reading material because if he is not interested, he won't remember. He will just read the words but not pay attention to what he's reading. The only workbooks we use are for math. Everything else is more interactive like time4learning, khanacademy, DVDs, comic books etc. I've learned to be more child led in many areas such as history and science. I hope this helps! Good luck! Remember, children with add are often highly intelligent and highly creative. Try something creative with her! 

romacox
by Silver Member on Mar. 22, 2013 at 7:35 AM
1 mom liked this

Workbooks, flashcards, lectures, sit down learning, ext  may not be her style of learning.  That method is known as left brain teaching, and is effective for about 45%of the population.  But when you home school, the whole world becomes your classroom, and that is known as whole brain teaching which is effective for 90% of the population.  .

With whole brain teaching,   children learn faster, retain more, drop out rates drop by 90%, brain health is improved,   and stress  is reduced.  This is achieved by physically involving the children in the learning process (games and real life experiences).   Following are some examples you can use with your little girl:

  • Take her outside, and use acorns (or other objects)  to do math problems.  Make a game of it as you race to see who can collect the most acorns, count them, and draw  that number on the ground with the acorns.  Adding, subtracting and dividing can be done this way too. Eventually have her write the numbers on paper after drawing them on the ground. Gradually introduce her to left brain teaching so that she is capable of taking written tests.
  • For comprehension, have her read one small paragraph, and  act out what just happened.  If she needs extra characters, have her instruct you or other siblings as to what you/ they need to do.  In other words make it an informal play production. You may have to break it down into a sentence at a time.  But start at her level of focusing ability, and gradually increase it. 
  • As for the checking out, this may be a habit developed from necessity.  So she may need to have short lessons, with short breaks in between so as to overcome this habit.  Gradually increase the time for lessons.  
  • You can teach spelling, vocabulary, foreign languages (language arts) by using the game Ring Around The Phonics.  The whole idea of whole brain teaching is to involve as many of the senses in the learning process as possible. 
romacox
by Silver Member on Mar. 22, 2013 at 8:40 AM
1 mom liked this

P.S. My  little brother, when he was 5, loved playing Monopoly.  He became quite proficient at  math this way, and it also improved his reading and focusing abilities.  .

mem82
by Platinum Member on Mar. 22, 2013 at 9:47 AM
Can she concentrate on other things? Is she upset that it takes her so long.?
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Pukalani79
by Kristin on Mar. 22, 2013 at 2:36 PM

 The only thing she can concentrate on for awhile is her art.  Even in dance she tries to focus but as soon as the teacher is helping someone else, she's "gone." She does get upset and frustrated when it takes awhile.  But it's so strange. She struggled and struggled to get through a few problems yesterday, then we took a break and went to the dance studio for her sister's class and she was able to get through the remaining problems with very little trouble.  Still took quite awhile, but she knew what she was doing.

Quoting mem82:

Can she concentrate on other things? Is she upset that it takes her so long.?

 

Pukalani79
by Kristin on Mar. 22, 2013 at 2:38 PM

 I will look up whole brain teaching, thank you.  I like the examples, I think she'd probably do well with that.  With the reading I usually have her draw something that stood out to her, sometimes she can do it, sometimes not. 

Quoting romacox:

Workbooks, flashcards, lectures, sit down learning, ext  may not be her style of learning.  That method is known as left brain teaching, and is effective for about 45%of the population.  But when you home school, the whole world becomes your classroom, and that is known as whole brain teaching which is effective for 90% of the population.  .

With whole brain teaching,   children learn faster, retain more, drop out rates drop by 90%, brain health is improved,   and stress  is reduced.  This is achieved by physically involving the children in the learning process (games and real life experiences).   Following are some examples you can use with your little girl:

  • Take her outside, and use acorns (or other objects)  to do math problems.  Make a game of it as you race to see who can collect the most acorns, count them, and draw  that number on the ground with the acorns.  Adding, subtracting and dividing can be done this way too. Eventually have her write the numbers on paper after drawing them on the ground. Gradually introduce her to left brain teaching so that she is capable of taking written tests.
  • For comprehension, have her read one small paragraph, and  act out what just happened.  If she needs extra characters, have her instruct you or other siblings as to what you/ they need to do.  In other words make it an informal play production. You may have to break it down into a sentence at a time.  But start at her level of focusing ability, and gradually increase it. 
  • As for the checking out, this may be a habit developed from necessity.  So she may need to have short lessons, with short breaks in between so as to overcome this habit.  Gradually increase the time for lessons.  
  • You can teach spelling, vocabulary, foreign languages (language arts) by using the game Ring Around The Phonics.  The whole idea of whole brain teaching is to involve as many of the senses in the learning process as possible. 

 

Pukalani79
by Kristin on Mar. 22, 2013 at 2:40 PM

 Thank you!  She does well with hands on projects as long as the lessons themselves are fairly short.  It's why I like Oak Meadow.  We do Compass learning online quite a bit, but even those lessons can be too long for her and she gets frustrated. 

Quoting QueenCreole313:

My son is ADHD and diagnosed with anxiety. This is part of the reason we decided to homeschool because I was feeling pressured to medicate him. I think first mom, you should read up on add. It has helped me a lot. But mom to mom, what has helped me is that I had to find out how my son learned. He is very visual. He hates workbooks. He has to select his own reading material because if he is not interested, he won't remember. He will just read the words but not pay attention to what he's reading. The only workbooks we use are for math. Everything else is more interactive like time4learning, khanacademy, DVDs, comic books etc. I've learned to be more child led in many areas such as history and science. I hope this helps! Good luck! Remember, children with add are often highly intelligent and highly creative. Try something creative with her! 

 

kirbymom
by Sonja on Mar. 22, 2013 at 5:47 PM

I have 7 kids and everyone of them have either add or adhd. Their dad has adhd and I have add. Both of us were diagnosed when we were young so we knew what to look for if it started rearing it's head. What we do is make sure they have an active atmosphere. They need to be busy and getting rid of their energy. They run around and they have to be "doing" something even with school work. These kids are brilliant but they have the attention span of a knat, sometimes. At least 3 of them, when they were little, thought that life wasn't normal if they were sitting on their head when watching tv or talking with us. And if there was any kind of a conversation going, well that was an adventure all by itself! So, what I would do is, keep their minds engaged as often as possible.  If you have any spelling, have her do a simon says spelling game. Involve as many of your family as much as possible. That will make it all the more interesting for her and help to keep her interest as well.  For every ten to fifteen minutes of schoolwork, have her stop and do something around the house for fun for five to ten minutes. Then go back to school and repeat the process through out the day. This will need to be done for a week or so, then you can either add to the process or change up the process. This way, the process isn't going to bore her either.  This is sort of what goes on in our family. My kids are always on the go even when they are at home. :). 

Pukalani79
by Kristin on Mar. 22, 2013 at 6:05 PM

 She doesn't have the excess energy, she just cannot focus. She just checks out. Doctor says that these are the kids who often fall through the cracks because they dont draw a lot of attention to themselves.  Or these will be the ones who are labelled lazy because they dont get their work done.

Quoting kirbymom:

I have 7 kids and everyone of them have either add or adhd. Their dad has adhd and I have add. Both of us were diagnosed when we were young so we knew what to look for if it started rearing it's head. What we do is make sure they have an active atmosphere. They need to be busy and getting rid of their energy. They run around and they have to be "doing" something even with school work. These kids are brilliant but they have the attention span of a knat, sometimes. At least 3 of them, when they were little, thought that life wasn't normal if they were sitting on their head when watching tv or talking with us. And if there was any kind of a conversation going, well that was an adventure all by itself! So, what I would do is, keep their minds engaged as often as possible.  If you have any spelling, have her do a simon says spelling game. Involve as many of your family as much as possible. That will make it all the more interesting for her and help to keep her interest as well.  For every ten to fifteen minutes of schoolwork, have her stop and do something around the house for fun for five to ten minutes. Then go back to school and repeat the process through out the day. This will need to be done for a week or so, then you can either add to the process or change up the process. This way, the process isn't going to bore her either.  This is sort of what goes on in our family. My kids are always on the go even when they are at home. :). 

 

QueenCreole313
by on Mar. 22, 2013 at 7:33 PM
I think short breaks are needed. My son used to get frustrated. It's gotten a lot better. I'm teaching him to listen to his body and take breaks when needed. He says it helps him "massage his brain" lol. I let him know there is no rush.

Quoting Pukalani79:

 Thank you!  She does well with hands on projects as long as the lessons themselves are fairly short.  It's why I like Oak Meadow.  We do Compass learning online quite a bit, but even those lessons can be too long for her and she gets frustrated. 


Quoting QueenCreole313:


My son is ADHD and diagnosed with anxiety. This is part of the reason we decided to homeschool because I was feeling pressured to medicate him. I think first mom, you should read up on add. It has helped me a lot. But mom to mom, what has helped me is that I had to find out how my son learned. He is very visual. He hates workbooks. He has to select his own reading material because if he is not interested, he won't remember. He will just read the words but not pay attention to what he's reading. The only workbooks we use are for math. Everything else is more interactive like time4learning, khanacademy, DVDs, comic books etc. I've learned to be more child led in many areas such as history and science. I hope this helps! Good luck! Remember, children with add are often highly intelligent and highly creative. Try something creative with her! 


 

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