Games That Increase Attention and Focus in ADHD Children

Five ways to reduce the symptoms of childhood attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADD/ADHD) through fun and games.

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ADHD son playing cards with his mom

Helping your young child with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADD/ADHD) pay attention is hard work, and nagging her or him to “do this” or “stop that” is getting on everyone’s nerves, especially yours. Try a little fun instead, to stretch her or his attention span. Studies suggest that everyday play -- especially play that engages a child’s brain and body -- accomplishes that goal better than worksheets, video games, or punishments. Here are five playful ways to build concentration.

“Freeze” time

Having trouble teaching your child to sit still? Play “statue.” Have your son make goofy poses until you shout, “Freeze!” He should hold that position for a set time (maybe 10 seconds, for starters). If he remains motionless the entire time, he gets to turn you into a statue. If she has energy to burn off, go outside and play freeze tag!

Here’s a variation for fairytale (and superhero) fans: Pretend she’s been caught in a magic spell, and have her freeze herself, lying down, like Sleeping Beauty. She stays still and quiet until the Fairy Godparent (you) unfreezes her.

Next: Try tabletop games

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