Sports & Activities

These Games Can Improve Executive Function

Family game night (or a little extra screen time) can improve executive function in children with ADHD. Whether he prefers classic checkers or fantasy football, these are our top picks.

Close up of dice and game pieces belonging to child with ADHD
Close up of dice and game pieces belonging to child with ADHD

Games are a natural way to help children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) develop executive function — the brain-based skills we need to plan and direct activities and regulate behavior.

For example: Checkers, chess, Monopoly, and Clue require planning, sustained attention, response inhibition, working memory, and metacognition.

Legend of Zelda, SimCity and its variations, Command & Conquer, and other problem-solving video games call for sustained attention, response inhibition, planning, organization, metacognition, and goal-directed persistence.

Managing fantasy sports teams requires executive skills, along with task initiation and time management.

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