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Is the IPAD Good for Kids’ Attention?

May 22, 2014 in Special Education Articles by Jess

Q: IS THE IPAD GOOD FOR KIDS' ATTENTION?

A: ONLY IF PARENTS MANAGE IT FOR THEM.

Attention is the busy traffic cop managing the portal of information flowing into our minds. These days, the cop is working overtime and is overworked and burning out in too many of us -- especially kids.

Experts and teachers alike are now worried about how the chaotic tsunami of information pouring through iPads, iPhones, iTouches, computers, TVs, androids, and other devices into our children's minds may be overtaxing and damaging brain development, especially how kids learn to pay attention. Many believe we are just seeing the tip of an iceberg. Read the rest of this entry →

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3 Things to Teach Your Kids Now About Their ADHD

November 18, 2012 in Special Education Articles by Jess

What should you say to your kids about their ADHD?  When should you start talking about it?  The answer is simple to parenting ADHD kids: teach what they can understand, and do it now. Education and awareness are important tools. Knowledge is power, and it can help your kids be successful. There are three critical conversations that you can have at any age (with some minor adjustments for young ADDers).

1. Understand your Brain

It’s important, even at young ages, that all children understand what their brains need to do their job well. Since ADD brains work differently in some ways, it’s all the more important information for our kids to understand that: Read the rest of this entry →

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What do Attention, Thinking, Planning, Memory and Follow-through Have in Common?

August 21, 2012 in Special Education Articles by Jess

Dear Drs. Utay

After testing with a school psychologist, we were told our son has a problem with executive functioning. He is intelligent but can’t apply himself. I thought he just needed more motivation or better study skills but it’s more complicated than that. What is executive functioning and how do I work with my son to improve it?

Executive functioning affects every aspect of life in and out of school. Many children just like this boy struggle with executive functioning deficiencies, but few are given the tools to make improvements. Let’s start with the basics. Read the rest of this entry →

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When an Attention Deficit Isn’t

March 6, 2012 in Special Education Articles by Jess

Addison is in the 6th grade, her first year in middle school. She did pretty well in elementary school, but she’s getting slammed in 6th grade. A couple of her teachers have described her appearing distracted, making mistakes with details, and being disorganized with her work. Addison admits to “zoning out” a lot during classes like English, Spanish, science, and geography. So clearly she has ADHD and could use some medication to help her focus.

Except that maybe she doesn’t have ADHD at all. Read the rest of this entry →

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Driven to Distraction by Anesthesia

February 29, 2012 in Special Education Articles by Jess

The Mayo Clinic recently reported that researchers have found that children exposed to anesthesia multiple times before the age of 3 have double the incidence of ADHD than those with no exposure to anesthesia. You can read the report here. In a 2009 report Mayo linked multiple anesthesia exposures before age 4 to learning disabilities.

Great. My son, has arthrogryposis and had three major surgeries and at least four smaller surgeries before age 3. Nothing we can do about that now. He has had many more surgeries since then. We have long noticed that he is inattentive. We also see that his memory suffers after surgeries. Nevertheless, without those surgeries his ability to walk, run, write, and feed himself would all be more severely impacted.For my child, and many like him, surgery is a necessity. Read the rest of this entry →

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