All children are prone to fidgeting, daydreaming, rowdiness or being unable to pay attention for more than a few minutes at a time; it is called being a kid. However, for some children the degree and frequency of such behavior indicates that they may have Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).
Is it ADHD? Pay attention to your child’s behavior. Does rowdiness, daydreaming or disrespectful behavior follow a pattern? If behavior problems crop up only in certain situations, or waxes and wanes, you child is exhibiting TKB (typical kid behavior). On the other hand, if your child’s lack of behavior skills seem to follow him wherever he goes and are consistent, the likelihood of ADHD is greater. At Stanfield, we believe that whether it is TKB or ADHD that is causing your children or students to expel exorbitant amounts of energy, there are ways to channel this behavior into productive and creative projects. Here are a few ideas to get you started.
1. Arts and Crafts
Children with ADHD are naturally creative and focusing on something they enjoy helps them develop the ability to plan and complete multi-step projects.
2. Enjoying the Outdoors
Arrange for your child to spend as much time outdoors as possible. Camping and hiking will help develop their confidence as well as their problem-solving skills and they can burn off excess energy in the process.
3. Performing Arts
Dancing helps burn off energy while teaching coordination. Acting provides an emotional outlet. Best of all, music, utilizes both sides of the brain at once. Bilateral brain activities encourage the brain to develop the ability to multi-task. Each of these activities also increases memorization skills.
4. Helping Around the House
Having your child help you with chores around the house teaches responsibility and instills a sense of pride. It is important to remain close by so that your child does not become distracted or frustrated. A bonus is that this will provide quality time for you to share with your child.
All sports are good in that they help channel your child’s extra energy. Team sports have the added bonus of teaching teamwork and building social skills. Martial arts works especially well as it emphasizes self-discipline and requires mental concentration, which helps with managing emotions.
Of course, these measures may not always prove successful. If these ideas do not work for you and your child, professional assessment, treatment, or a referral may be necessary. A university affiliated child guidance clinic or learning center may be a great place to start.
©2012 James Stanfield Company. All Rights Reserved.
The child who is ‘left behind’ most is the one who leaves school without transition readiness.