ADHD in the Classroom
Addressing the side effects of ADHD is a common classroom management issue, and the rising rates of ADHD diagnoses suggest that the scope of this concern is likely to increase over time. The CDC estimates that 11% of children age 4-17 have received an ADHD diagnosis and notes that the number has been rising for several years.
People with ADHD have a need to release excess energy. They can appear to be in constant motion, kicking their seat, wiggling in place, or even getting up and walking or jumping around the room. This motion extends to their thinking as well, and ADHD students can appear to be run by a motor, talking or making non-verbal noises incessantly.
How to Manage ADHD in the Classroom
Thankfully, there are some strategies teachers can implement to channel this energy in productive and non-disruptive ways. ADDitude Magazine has some helpful suggestions to make time spent in the classroom more enjoyable and productive for all.
- Sending students on errands to get them up and moving.
- Provide students an in-classroom standing trampoline to release energy.
- Allow students to utilize fidget toys during class time.
- Replace traditional desks and chairs with options that allow more movement throughout the day (ie: exercise balls instead of chairs)
- Standing desks allow for a larger range of motion that is less disruptive to surrounding learners.
When a teacher considers the needs of ADHD learners, it is important to provide a variety of options that will be flexible enough to address the wide array of needs. Setting up a classroom in a way that accommodates all learners is an important step toward engaging students and making sure the classroom is a place of learning for all.
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