January 13th, 2011, 07:59 PM
Tips on Homeschooling a Kiddo with ADD/ADHD
Hi there. I have four, the oldest is a senior and he attends public school. We decided to pull out our 8th grade daughter last fall and homeschool she and our younger two as well (they are 2 1/2 and 5 next month). My two oldest and my husband and many people on my husband's side are ADD/ADHD. I am not, but I am the teacher!
Any tips and any high schoool cirriculum recommendations are appreciated.
She is no longer medicated. We have tried everything through the years with lots of side effect issues, and one of our goals was to be med-free. She does take 2400 mg of fish oil daily.
January 14th, 2011, 06:22 AM
Have you explored other environmental and dietary factors that might be exacerbating their ADD/ADHD? Food dyes, allergies, sleep deprivation, dehydration... all have symptoms that mimic ADD/ADHD or can increase the associated behaviors. Especially sleep deprivation. I've heard of kids coming home from traditional schooling whose ADD was magically 'cured' simply because they were allowed to fall asleep and wake up naturally to their own body rhythms. Ditto with lots of exercise and a healthy diet low in artificial dyes, preservatives, and junky carbs (white sugar, white flour...)
Some general ideas-
Allowing kids to stand while doing schoolwork
Let them multitask or listen to music while working
Have them do some of their work orally- spelling bees, math drills, book reports, quizzes...
If they have mastered a concept, don't spend time on review (I let my kids 'test out' of a chapter if it's something we've covered-especially at the beginning of the year)
Give them a check list of work to be accomplished and have them keep track of their accomplishments
Sometimes it helps if the teaching remains low-key while allowing the child to be animated- an enthusiastic teacher can overstimulate the child
Methods/Curriculum I've heard recommended:
Kinesthetic (hands on) learning
Those are thoughts off the top of my head. I am sure there are some with first-hand experience, but I do have many homeschooling friends with ADD/ADHD kids, and my best friend from childhood has been ADHD her whole life, and I've seen what helped her.
January 15th, 2011, 10:27 AM
My son is high-functioning Autistic, along with a bunch of other dx's, including Adhd-NOS. We went the drug way and this only seemed to make his symptoms worse and also make him zombie like. He has been drug free for a few years now and he is a different kid, along with the fact that he has matured, and learned some self control (which sometimes he still has problems with).
ADD kids are often unorganized with their lives as well as their thinking. So with my son who is 15, I make a weekly plan for him. It lays out for the whole week. It has pretty much everything, my schedule (I work part-time), our family activities, and the the majority of the plan is his school work, what to read, what work needs to be done etc. Every morning we go over the plan, and I teach anything I need to teach them (I also home school my 2 dd). He then has the rest of the day to complete the tasks, this lets him learn to organize his day. He can take breaks when he wants, get a snack when he wants. If you think about it, we as adults aren't sitting all day long we get up and move around. At around 2pm I go over his list of work again, making sure he has completed all the days assignments, and answering any questions he might have had. I always keep a master copy because like I said ADD kids often are unorganized and try as I like he still loses papers that I handed him 10 minutes before, lol. He does keep a three ring binder with dividers to help him stay organized.
As for curriculum, the past few years we have stuck mainly to unit studies that were very hands on. This year we switched to Sonlight, mainly because I needed something more for my girls and I wanted us all to try to somewhat stay together. I was a little tentative for my ds, I had planned to scale his work back and just have him do half, he can become often overwhelmed. But to my surprise, I never had too, he just went with it. It is heavy on reading and I thought this would be a problem but the books are so interesting that he loves it. As for Math, he uses Teaching Textbooks, and I love that cause each problem is explained. He has always been good in math.
I hope my ramblings weren't to out of control, Well anyway the thing that is most important is to raise Godly men and women, so as long as you glorify Christ then you can't go wrong!
January 15th, 2011, 02:11 PM
I knew I'd seen an article about this not long ago- at Psychology Today, of all places. Experiences of ADHD-Labeled Kids Who Switch from Conventional Schooling to Homeschooling or Unschooling by Dr. Peter Gray.