I blogged a little over a year ago about suspecting that my child had ADHD. Since then, we’ve moved and my son has attended two different schools. That alone can cause a third grader’s school performance to be a bit low. Unlike adults, school is an emotional thing for a child. By the time we get to college most of us can separate distractions and truly learn despite the setting it might be in. But elementary aged children who attend different schools in the middle of a school year or who are uprooted from one state and move to another around unfamiliar people will most definitely have to work through an adjustment period. Jaydon had to do it twice in one year.
Since we moved to northern Colorado here in November, we quickly got the boys a doctor along with developing some good communication between the boys’ teachers so that I could help with any struggles. About six weeks ago Jaydon started taking medication to control his ADHD tendencies. He’s on the lowest dose right now until the end of June. We’ve noticed that while smart, and while he can recite things he’s learned in school, he doesn’t test well. When we get graded tests back I’ll ask Jaydon the questions he missed and nine times out of ten he gives me the correct answer.
Recently, I’ve noticed that Jaydon still isn’t showing enough improvement in school. I have requested that he wear noise-canceling headphones that he keeps in his backpack in case he has a test he needs to take. We will see if these help at all.
My son is not on a 504 plan or an IEP (Individualized Education plan) but if he doesn’t show improvement before the end of the year, I may end up homeschooling him for fourth grade. I can’t allow him to slip through the cracks. It’s unfortunate with a kid as smart as he is, that he’s having these struggles.
So what does ADHD look like?
Well, to be honest, it looks different on every kid. My child is high-functioning ADHD. Meaning that you’d have to be around him for several weeks to realize he has ADHD. ADHD can be extreme with the inability to focus at all which can contribute to behavioral issues. Or it can be slight like with Jaydon. With Jaydon, you can ask him a question, and he’ll reply with another question about something else entirely as if he didn’t hear you. It can be frustrating. More boys are diagnosed with ADHD than girls, but it runs in our family. I had ADHD growing up, probably only as extreme as Jaydon has it now. It was enough for me to have a little bit of a difficulty learning in school even though I loved school. I loved school just as much as Jaydon loves school now. He has friends but has a little social awkwardness. Every single new friend is a best friend. He is not anxious around new people, he just instantly makes them as close to family as one can get. Which can be awkward when the new friend is overwhelmed by the best friend status. Let’s just say he’s probably the friendliest kid you’ll ever meet.
Jaydon is hyperactive in the evening hours. He can not sit still. He wrestles with his brother, has to constantly move and he’s very emotional. He easily gets jealous or frustrated. His emotional maturity is lacking. I feel like it takes every bit of energy he can muster between 8:40 am and 3:50 pm to stay focused. By the time he gets home from school, he’s often an unraveled mess. He’s both tired and full of energy at the same time. His kindergarten brother handles the long school days a lot better.
How are we dealing with it?
Before going home after school, if the weather is nice I allow him and his brother to play at the park adjacent to the school for about 15 minutes. Then we get home and continue with some homework and his evening chores and required reading. Giving him this time to play allows him to unwind from being pent-up in a classroom.
It’s very important that ADHD children have a physical outlet to relieve their pent-up energy. This helps them focus more. One of the reasons I am considering homeschooling is to allow him to move more when at school it’s not appropriate. Another reason is to individualize his learning to him. If he doesn’t understand something, there’s no hesitation to get an answer. He doesn’t have to worry about upsetting a teacher because he has a question, or worry about the mean kid at lunch. He doesn’t have to hold it to go to the bathroom for several hours and he may not need to be on medication at all if he were educated at home. But I do have reservations about homeschooling. I would worry about the lack of social interaction with peers, and that it would eat into my ability to keep writing/blogging for a living. Colorado Connections Academy does have homeschool meet-ups for kids weekly and fun field trips. We researched that alternative educational style when we thought we were going to be RVing for a living and in fact we enrolled the kids at one point but changed our mind on RVing for a living so they never actually participated in homeschooling, but during that waiting period we learned a lot about it and I personally love it, especially as an option for an ADHD child who might fall through the cracks with traditional school.
At any rate, I thought I’d share this with my readers because I know we have a reader or two out there whose child has ADHD and I want to let you know that you are not alone. If you have a child with ADHD, what have you done to help them focus during times its most important?
This blog is a personal blog written and edited by me, Heather Jones. For questions about this blog, please contact me via the “Contact Me” link on the top menu bar or click here. This blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorship, paid insertions or other forms of compensation.
Disclosure Policy For Reviews / Guest/Sponsored Posts:
The compensation received may influence the advertising content, topics or posts made in this blog. That content, advertising space or post may not always be identified as paid or sponsored content.
The owner of this blog is compensated to provide opinions on products, services, websites and various other topics. Even though the owner of this blog receives compensation for posts or advertisements, I (we) always give our honest opinions, findings, beliefs, or experiences on those topics or products. The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely the bloggers’ own. Any product claim, statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider or party in question.
To see more of my disclosure policy please click here.