August 15, 2011

It's Time To Go Back To School

Are you ready? Is your child ready? Have you made the trip or trips to the store to purchase back to school supplies?

Making sure your child has all the necessary supplies is important. So is helping your child adjust to a new school year. If a bedtime routine was tossed aside during the summer it's important to put one into place. It's best to slide back into that routine a couple of weeks before school starts but if time has gotten away from you it's better late than never.

Start making plans for incorporating homework and study times into your family schedule. Include establishing a distraction free place where your child can do homework. Be sure to include necessary supplies.

Once school is in session, ask your child about their day at school. Don’t resort to the typical question, “What did you learn in school today?” Instead you might ask, “What’s the funniest thing that happened at school today?”

Make a point of getting involved at school. Attend parent-teacher meetings, curriculum nights and open houses. You’ll be showing your child that their education is important to you.

August 1, 2011

Managing Your Child's ADHD

If your child has been diagnosed with ADHD or if you have a child with ADHD tendencies you know how challenging it is for them to be organized and stay focused on tasks. As parents it's important to teach your child ways to manage their ADHD symptoms.

Since school will soon be back in session this is a perfect time to consider what strategies you'll need to implement at home to help your child be successful this coming school year.

Break things down into steps so it's not so overwhelming.

Make lists, use visual charts and post-it notes. 

Have a "marked" place for everything.

Use "When.....Then" directions.

Establish a token or points system for immediate rewards. Tokens can be taken away as a consequence.

Play board games. Video games can be over-stimulating. Suggested games are Checkers, Chess, Connect Four, Trouble, Jenga, Memory, and Pick-Up-Sticks. These games involve strategy which teaches focusing, slowing down and impulse control - all of which can also help build confidence.

Cook together. Use simple recipes with few steps and it will teach your child a fun and healthy way of following directions.

Have a "Special Time" at least once a week to just enjoy your child and help him feel good about himself. Mark it on the calendar so he knows when to expect it.

Make sure your child gets exercise as well as relaxation times to learn self calming.

Ignore mild, unwanted behaviors and pick your battles.