Saturday, May 12, 2012

Homeschooling An ADD Or ADHD Child

If you have a child who suffers from ADD or ADHD you know it is often difficult to get your child to sit still for more than two minutes. Knowing this makes some parents ask "How am I supposed to homeschool when I can't even get them to sit down long enough for me to tie their shoes?" The answer: "You just do!" Is it going to be difficult? You bet. Are you going to want to pull your hair out at times? Absolutely! BUT, will you and your child develop a stronger bond and learn way more than either of you ever thought possible? You can count on it!

Homeschooling, in and of itself, can be a difficult, stressful process, especially in the beginning. Adding a hyperactive child to the mix can make things even more difficult and stressful, but it's not impossible. If a public school teacher can teach a class of 30 students, including those with ADD and ADHD, you can homeschool your own child, or children, even with their ADD and ADHD. A public school teacher has a set curriculum, set schedule, and set pace they must work at. You, as a homeschool teacher have the liberty to choose your own learning style, adjust your schedule to fit your families lifestyle, and you and your child set the pace for learning.

If your child excels in one subject, but struggles in another, you simply use a higher grade level learning style for one subject and a lower grade level learning style for the subject they struggle in. If you know there's a certain time frame during the day that your child is just not going to sit still, regardless of what you do, you just block out that time frame and teach only when you know you can get your child's attention. If you have tried anything and everything under the sun and still can't get your child to sit down and write even two words on a piece of paper, you stop what you're teaching, go outside, maybe do some science or math learning (look for ideas in a previous post), then go back in and try language arts or writing once your child is able to sit down and focus.

Some homeschool mothers have found that computerized curriculum is effective for their ADD and ADHD child. In a computerized curriculum you pick the subject for your child to learn, and your child is then given games and other online activities that teach your child the subject. With your child constantly having to focus on "winning the game" by clicking the computer mouse they are more apt to sit down for longer periods of time, and the best part, they don't even know they're learning!

Another great learning style is putting activity into your curriculum. A public school wants your child sitting down to learn everything, but in a homeschool classroom, guess what, if your child wants to stand on the couch while you learn language arts, they can! If your child wants to run around while reciting their spelling words, they can! Get creative! Math doesn't always have to be sitting down figuring out a math problem. Math could be counting blades of grass, moving rocks around to figure out a difficult math problem, or even doing enough jumping jacks to figure out their addition problem. Movement can be used in almost every single subject, so use your brain, ask your child for ideas, do some research online, and put some movement in your classroom! And hint, hint....that movement you're doing in math to figure out 2+2..yeah, that's P.E too, so be sure to keep up with your activities and incorporate them into all the appropriate subjects.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Kimberly, I noticed you are following my blog and I want to stop by and say hi. I see this is your first year of homeschooling. How is it going? I like this post on ADD. I might have one of those children. And I think the computerized math was a huge help for him this year. Take care. Sue