Students with ADHD are at risk in schools that do not recognize their individual needs. Simple adjustments in environment and instruction deliver a huge impact on academic success. With a structured and informal classroom in a private school for ADHD, a teacher can apply learning strategies that will help that child realize his academic potential.
The Impact of the Classroom
Classroom environment is crucial for any student, but it is especially so for students with ADHD. An informal classroom with structure and clear expectations can help. Not all children learn the same, and an informal approach allows a student greater flexibility to work at their own pace. A combination of structure, patience, and a casual atmosphere can help students relax and concentrate on learning.
The informal classroom can still be a structured classroom and may include a lot of visual cues to keep students organized and focused. A teacher will use agendas, calendars, checklists and daily assignments written in the same location on the board. Work spaces are clearly defined, and all materials have their place on a shelf, the closets or the teacher’s desk.
A student’s desk should reflect the classroom structure and organization. Homework and folders should be separated and stacked in order of need or use. Papers should be put away, and books stacked neatly and according to the daily schedule. This organization attempts to promote a functional arrangement of desk materials to keep the student on task.
Structure within the School for ADHD Students
The school day should also be arranged to help students with ADHD. Consistent scheduling every day as well as week-to-week is key. Semesters can seem very long to a student with ADHD and should be broken up by trips and holidays. A timeline of objectives is also helpful so that students can cross off completed milestones to help avoid mid-semester tedium.
Beyond the organizational strategies of the classroom, a school can offer other methods to help the student with ADHD. All children have varied learning styles, such as visual, aural, reading and kinesthetic. This is no less true for students with ADHD. Classrooms that are designed to emphasize unique learning styles are extremely effective for all students.
For classroom instruction, minimizing external distractions is important and can be achieved with arranged seating. In group settings, verbal directions are not always received the first time, and the teacher should repeat directions to students with ADHD. Reducing the size of the learning group also helps and allows better focus on individual strengths and strategies for learning. Even cooperative learning like partner reading can help the student with ADHD.
Clearly classroom environment and a few simple instructional modifications can impact learning. For more information on how Grand River approaches supporting students with learning disabilities, contact us today.