Students with ADHD often struggle with executive functioning skills, including organization, planning, time management, and task initiation. These skills can be critical for success in school. Effective ADHD tutoring programs can help students develop these skills and thrive academically. ADHD tutors should not only teach students strategies to develop these skills, but should show them how to apply the strategies to their relevant school work. Let’s delve into some of these strategies:
Time management in ADHD tutoring programs
Individuals with ADHD tend to struggle with time management. They are often late, wait until the last minute to complete tasks, or have an unrealistic sense of how long an assignment will take to complete. To help develop this skill, an ADHD tutor can teach students to differentiate between the ET, or estimated time (how long they think it will take to complete a task) and compare it to the AT, or actual time it takes to complete the task. When students with ADHD first use this strategy, there is often a big gap between the ET and AT since they often over or underestimate how long they think it will take to complete the task. However, the more they practice this strategy, the more realistic they will become with timing and the more the ET and AT times will start to merge. You can read more time management strategies at Time Management Tips For Kids With ADHD – EBL Coaching.
Organizational systems in ADHD tutoring programs
Students with ADHD can be very disorganized. Papers are often spread out on their desk, their backpack is a mess, and their notebooks and binders are often stuffed with papers they don’t need to be carrying with them. To help with this challenge, ADHD tutors can teach students a 3-tier organization system, as follows: tier 1 is a working notebook, or the binder or notebook they carry to school with them on a regular basis. It should only contain materials they absolutely need to be carrying with them, and they should designate one day per week as their “clean out my working notebook day”. On this day, the student should remove papers and materials they don’t absolutely need to be carrying with them and file them into the appropriate section of their accordion file, or tier 2. This accordion file should be divided into three sections for every class: homework, notes, and tests/quizzes. Finally, if the student completed a project or wrote a paper they want to save for the long run, they should put it in a filing drawer, which is tier 3. Since many students now use computers in lieu of papers, ADHD tutors can also help students organize their online assignments into appropriate digital files and teach them to use calendars and set reminders for upcoming due dates. Learn more about these types of strategies at How to Build Executive Functioning Skills With Homework – EBL Coaching.
Writing strategies in ADHD tutoring programs
Students with ADHD often struggle to organize their ideas and express them effectively when writing. They might have interesting, creative ideas, but need help with the writing process. ADHD tutors can help students start the writing process by teaching them to brainstorm their ideas. This might look like a web diagram with the topic in the middle and the details and supporting details ideas branching out of it. It could also be in list form or could be an outline. The key is learning to brainstorm before writing. Then an ADHD tutor can teach the student to translate their brainstorm diagram into an organized, structured writing piece. Finally, an ADHD tutor should teach the student to self-check their writing before completing it as a last step. One checklist they may use is CTOPS, which stands for Capitalization, Tense, Organization, Punctuation, Spelling.
Students with ADHD are often very bright and have many strengths. However, they can struggle in school due to weak organization and executive functioning skills. An effective ADHD tutoring program can teach students concrete strategies for developing these skills and can help students achieve confidence and success in school.
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