How to Write Easy Essays and Painless Prose

Half of all kids with ADHD struggle with writing, which can make every assignment — from straightforward worksheets to full-length essays — feel like torture. Boost your child's skills with these 18 strategies for school and home.

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Solutions in the Classroom: Use Accommodations Where Necessary

-- Allow enough time. Students with ADHD, especially those with the inattentive subtype, may take longer to process information and should receive extended time to complete assignments.

-- Don't grade early work. Sensitive students are discouraged by negative feedback as they are developing their writing skills. Wait until the paper is finished before assigning it a grade.

-- Don't deduct points for poor handwriting or bad grammar. Unless an assignment is specifically measuring handwriting and grammar skills, when a child is working hard to remember and communicate, let some things slide.

-- Use a graphic organizer. A graphic organizer organizes material visually in order to help with memory recall. Distribute pre-printed blank essay forms that ADHD students can fill in, so they'll reserve their efforts for the most important task — writing the essay.

-- Grade limited essay elements. To encourage writing mastery and avoid overwhelming students, grade only one or two elements at any given time. For example, "This week, I'm grading subject-verb agreement in sentences." Tighter grading focus channels students' attention to one or two writing concepts at a time.

Next: Solutions at Home...

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TAGS: Back to School, For Teachers of ADHD Children, Learning Disabilities

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