Going back to school after the long summer break is a difficult task for most kids but for kids with ADHD the transition can be so more challenging. Implementing some basic organisation skills can make a big difference for them at school and home.
A good start is to have text books, copies and folders all colour coded as per each subject with a nominated colour on the spine. This can often be a helpful aid. It supports the student being organised and remembering to bring the appropriate materials to class.
The homework journal is an invaluable communication between the teacher, student and parent. Sometimes using abbreviations when taking down homework assignments would help establish the routine. Encourage the idea of crossing out the homework when it is completed, because it gives the student a sense of achievement, as well as allowing the student’s parent to see what is done and what is not done. Getting the parent to sign the journal can also be helpful.
A Well Organised Locker
If the locker is maintained, to some degree, in an orderly manner, it can help make the school day much easier for everyone involved. For a start, there should be a laminated time-table for the inside of the door. Having the time-table colour coded as per each subject to match the text-books, copies and folders really helps. Locker keys should be attached to their person somewhere and plenty of spares are useful; one tucked away in the school bag is useful and maybe a couple lodged with a teacher or SNA. Encourage Friday as the clearout day too.
Good Homework Routine helps students with ADHD
Once the school year begins in earnest, the homework issues generally emerge. Encourage the student and parent to establish a good homework routine time (e.g., 6.30 – 8 p.m.) and stick to it. The forgotten text books can be traumatic for the teacher, parent and student. Establishing a buddy system can be a great help here, someone the student can ring or text, or even a sympathetic parent who would be willing to provide the information.
In implementing some basic aids for these students into their routine, school life can be much improved. For the most part, the student turning up without their homework, the right sports kit, missing uniform items is a function of the fact that these students have great difficulty in focusing or concentrating on a task, so helping the student and the parent establish some good working practices can be a positive experience leading to a more harmonious school day.
"From a mother of a 15 year old son with ADHD”