Children’s Book Review: Annie’s Plan

Behavioral interventions that help a child reach daily and weekly goals.

School supplies on wooden table belonging to ADHD student
School supplies on wooden table belonging to ADHD student

Treating ADHD/ADD in Children and Adolescents Solutions for Parents and Clinicians

by Jeanne Kraus, illustrated by Charles Beyl
Magination Press (September 15, 2006), ages 6-11
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Annie’s Plan, an easy-to-read storybook designed for kids ages six to 11, offers a glimpse into the life of a little girl named Annie. She’s a bright student who loves crossword puzzles, but she struggles to keep herself organized. Annie talks candidly about the challenges she faces at school and home — and about the pair of 10-point schoolwork and homework plans developed by her parents, teacher, and guidance counselor to help her learn.

This book doesn’t discuss seeing a doctor or the pros and cons of medication — it’s about behavioral interventions that help a child reach daily and weekly goals. Even though I’ve worked with children with ADHD for more than 10 years, I picked up several tips that I’ll be using with my own students. For example, Kraus suggests placing red stickers on priority assignments, to indicate that they should be completed first. And I hope other teachers will see the value of designating an area of the classroom as a “think tank” — a space that’s kept free of conversation and other distractions.

Both 10-point plans are integrated into the narrative, so the book remains kid-friendly. (Parents and teachers will appreciate the helpful addendum, which elaborates on each of the points.) The illustrations are appealing, and I appreciated the detailed images of Annie’s daily planner and action plan.

I recommend Annie’s Plan for any youngster with ADHD who struggles to stay organized at school, and I don’t know of an elementary teacher who wouldn’t appreciate the tips.

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