Thanks for visiting my blog. Hope you find some helpful hints for organizing your time and space. My passions are to help you make home a refuge instead of a crisis center, and to help you function in peace rather than chaos - at home or at work. I have switched my main blog to 1-2-3 ... Get Organized on WordPress, so please visit me there.

Friday, February 20, 2009

More Tips for Helping Your ADD Child Stay Organized

Happy Friday! I enjoyed the pleasure of being with the PTA for Brunswick, OH Preschool last night. They asked me to share about organizing their toddlers' rooms, toys, paper, and artwork. Seems like a very active and involved group!

Today I'm getting myself and our house organized to receive our last foster house. Have a great weekend!

More Tips for Helping Your ADD Child Stay Organized

Lauren Davidson, a professional organizer and mom of an add child offers the following tips to organizers dealing with parents of ADD children. Just thought you might like to eavesdrop:

"For individuals with ADD/ADHD, it takes a holistic approach to help them stay focused. Sleep, nutrition, exercise and attitude can go a long way towards reducing stress-related difficulties with distraction.

Some things that are usually helpful:

Build in routines - homework in the same place, at same time every day.
Verbalize the process ("Now we are doing math, after we can take a break")

Break tasks down to make them more manageable. EX. 15 minutes of reading, then take a NON-TV/VIDEO break. Chat, do a few stretches or yoga poses, draw a picture together - just a mental break.

Make sure the environment is conducive to staying focused - quiet or with white noise, no TV, clutter or extra people around. Gross motor play, a nutritious snack and go to the bathroom before settling down to a task.

Let the child fidget with something while they work. Silly putty, a squeeze ball, "hair ball", pen clicker are all good options.

These are just a few tips. ADHD is an impairment of the executive function of the brain, so even in an organized environment the child is liable to be distracted, impulsive and fidgety.

Individuals with ADHD learn visually. It can help the child to have a visual schedule of the day. As he completes a task, he can see the next item (should be fun/rewarding) as a picture, which is more real than a word.

Above all, the parent should arm his/herself with patience and a lot of love, and be ready to sit next to the child to help him stay on track. It will be a lifetime process for the child to learn how to compensate for the challenges and leverage the strengths (of which there are many with ADHD).

www.adda.org is a great resource for more tips.

I guess the real golden nugget is to refer your client to someone who specializes in ADD/ADHD organizing or a pediatric ADD coach.

If the parents make it their Mission to learn everything they can get their hands on regarding ADHD, in order to help their son succeed in a neuro-typical world, they will not regret it.

Raising children with neurological differences (it's not just a learning difference!) can be frustrating and sometimes (frankly) depressing, but it can also be the most rewarding experience of your life. I speak from personal experience :)

Hooray, differences!"

What do you find that works with your ADD child? (If you receive this blog by email and want to comment, this link will take you back to my blog.)