What I Wish My Son's Teachers Knew About Him and ADHD
One mother shares what she wishes all teachers knew about the ADHD students in their classroom. Read and share with the educator in your life.
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13 Comments: What I Wish My Son's Teachers Knew About Him and ADHD
I’ve personally never learned by moving so much.
They say that if you’ve seen one ADHD person, you’ve seen one ADHD person. To each their own.
In my life this gave my instructors more time to partner with me, other coaches, parents, and to get to know me. This led to a more enjoyable learning experience for both me and my coaches. It also allowed me to make some bonds that have lasted all my life.
We need more like it. 🙂
As a teacher myself, we appreciate all the “Thanks” we can get. You are very welcome.
“…my son doesn’t want to misbehave.”
The best teachers recognizes this, and carrie with them a great deal of Grace, if they are going to work with ADHD children, or any child for that matter. I’ve observed it many times myself. ADHD kids tend to see something particularly “yummy” and the moment you turn your back, their impulsivity takes over, and they have their hands in the “cookie-jar”. Still, it’s nice to be reminded.
“…my son doesn’t mean to blurt out.”
As both a teacher and ADHD “normie” myself, I’ve noticed that we(and kids), tend to notice things others haven’t or are oblivious too, – The “elephant in the room”, so too speak, and feel compelled to say things we know are going to get us weird looks, but,…our impulsivity, and/or the desire to overcome our anxiety about it,(There is an ELEPHANT standing in the middle of the room!), causes us to “blurt” out…It’s not always intentional, there are times our limited executive functions fail to stop us from speaking…and sometimes…we just don’t mind blurting.(Kind of a “Dang the torpedoes!…Full speed ahead!” approach. *We also rarely consider how our out-burst are effecting others.
YEA Impulsivity! 🙁
“When the parents of a student with ADHD ask for a reduced homework load for their child, we aren’t trying to get him out of work.”
Most teachers get this, we also see that some students have great difficulty focusing on homework.- Homework is boring, cake is not. So we make the necessary sacrifices to let them breath and enjoy their home life.
There are alot of remarks I’d love to make in regards to this article but, this is starting to get long-winded, and I smoke so… 🙂
Thank you again, for this encouraging post. Both teachers and students could learn a lot from it.
Very touching and beautifully put.
These are some very important things to know.
Lack of clear direction, goals, feedback, or purpose, can retard the growth of the best of students.
Another great idea…Find your(my) child’s passion, direct it clearly(It helps with focus, and reduces anxiety), and hold on tight! You may be amazed at what they can do for you. *You might want to bring a helmet. 🙂
Having teachers that can relate and inform an ADHD child properly, is a real blessing. With thoughtful, insightful, even loving input from parent(s?) like you, they could be un-stoppable. “Buckle-up!” ought to be on that list somewhere. 🙂
Thanks again, for posting.
I totally agree I have sever ADHD and when i was in school and to this day stim with almost no control over it and would get punished often for stimming i would often air type or shake my hands. I was always labeled trouble till a teacher with adhd like me heard and helped raise awareness that these things are far from my control
I actually think the letter is pretty accurate for all ADHD children, I am the mother of an ADHD teen and have ADHD myself. What is more – as a teacher who has just completed her postgraduate training here in the UK – we are supposed to differentiate for children with special needs, so she is right to demand special treatment for her kid if he is diagnosed, and the reason why diagnosis is so important. Without it, the teacher can’t make a distinction – with it, that kid is on every lesson plan.
I am trying to see if I can find or start a group of teachers with ADHD – it is woefully under-diagnosed in the UK (in the state school where I studied there were only 3 diagnoses in a school of 1,700 kids) because I think there is much more that we could be doing to differentiate.
I also think having been through the process of training – I can report back that I doubt there are many ADHD teachers, although it is actually a good job for us because it is so boundaried, physical and exciting (if you make it so).
One study in the UK showed that teachers who had a small poster of “Tips for managing Hyperactive and impulsive students” made the biggest difference to treatment of ADHD kids than many other expensive measures. Just having the awareness from the teacher that there was something else going on (ie teacher didn’t take it personally and or take it as a comment on their lack of control of the class) that treatment of ADHD kids was much better.
With this in mind – why hasn’t anyone done a poster for the classroom? Or have they? As the Mum said, many of us ADHDers kids and adults don’t get embarrassed by our condition (and why should neurodifference be a shameful thing anyway) so they wouldn’t mind having the poster up. There was one up in the staffroom – so such posters do exist.
As I mentioned, the study showed that even if teachers didn’t read the advice – they still responded more favourably to ADHDers in the class. I gave a copy of this Tips poster to every training teacher in my place of study.
You are SO much more advanced in the States than here in the UK (perhaps because as Kathleen Nadeau suggests – more intrepid ADHD types founded the US!) so please respond if you have read this far!
It would also to know why more are diagnosed here in the UD than the UK🤔
Again Thank you Emma for you insight!♥️
Well said and very informative..thank you for caring.
I have some issues with this. I like to do my best to build relationships with my students and their parent/s. Communication is definitely key. In the letter, the majority of the symptoms that the parent is claiming that only her child has is also felt by the other kids in the classroom. The underdeveloped frontal lobe would be something that separates him from the rest but, the frontal lobe doesn’t fully develop until approximately age 25. Real documentation from a doctor would be helpful. To allow parents, to just download this and give it to a teacher is not communicating. This sounds like the parent wants us to give more attention and time to a particular student. Most parents want that. I have ADD and I know many people that have varying degrees of ADD/ADHD. Genuine Communication, open-mindedness, and willingness from all parties involved will help any child. I would need to be able to know the parent and child more than this letter. ADHD kids are not one size fits all and neither should this letter. Maybe I am wrong, but I would still need to know more.
This is exactly the response and attitude, parents with children with ADHD have to put up with. My child has been very fortunate to have had very special and wonderful teachers work with her, that took the extra time to understand her, and had the patience. This is what’s helping her succeed in school! Those are the teachers that were truly meant to be teachers and I will forever be grateful for them!
The problem is, very few teachers know, really, clinically know ADHD, like this teacher. Why? Because they are not provided the training on mental health in the classroom (ADHD, Trauma, etc.), nor are they invested in learning. This is unfortunate for the children who are then just labeled as the “problem child”. My advice, as a LMFT, do yourself and your students a favor, educate yourself on mental health issues in children and how they manifest in the classroom. This is a very accurate description of ADHD! To the person who shared this article…AWESOME JOB! Thank you!!
I feel for this mother who wrote the letter. It described
Teachers need to get educated in the area of ADHD.
I think it should be a requirement for them to pass an
Exam in thus area before they start their teaching career.
Some teachers are unaware of the amount of damage they
Inflict on ADHD kids by their uniformed expectations.
They can be cruel, selfish and petty towards ADHD kids.
I think it will take a major class action lawsuit to push
I think you’re mistaking the point of the article. (Quite offensively, I might add, too.) It was merely going through all the issues that come up with ADHD experiences. Yes, every child feels sad. But not every child feel overwhelming defeat in their sadness. Yes, every child feels happy. But not every child is bouncing off the walls ecstatic to the point of no calming down without threats of punishment. Yes, every child gets mad. But not every child feels so much uncontrollable rage that they impulsively lash out and punch another child. That’s ADHD.
Next, I really don’t think YOU, as the teacher, on a personal or professional level, have any rights to any medical documents. Matter of fact, I know you don’t. Ever heard of HIPPA? Nor do YOU, as the teacher, have the right to question the what is going on with someone’s medical conditions. If the parents offer it up, fine. But neither the parents, NOR THE DOCTORS, need your approval to diagnose the child in your class, or any other child that goes under medical studies to advance the knowledge of ADHD.
This article was just to give you, as a teacher, an idea of what goes on with an ADHD child. Most parents just want you to be aware of symptoms, not as means of avoidance, but an explanation. Families of ADHD children are already suffering. Their asking for a little help, a little compassion. Stop throwing excuses aside with “everyone has some forms of it,” or “it’s all on a sliding scale”. These children hear more negativity than anyone else in the room, and it destroys them!
Well to the teacher who has some issues with this article. I am a mother with a child who is now 15 and has struggled with ADHD since the second grade. We have also taken her to the doctor to have her placed on medication which I hate doing it seems to change a personality, her true self but seems to make it easier for the people/teachers she is with during an eight hour day without Our supervision. We can only hope that talking to her and coaching her and repeating to her can help her someday have a more confident atmosphere. We as parents do understand that they are not the only child in the room but when singled out they do feel like they are the only child in the room and can completely lower their self-esteem. Nowadays most children are in classes together intertwined with ones that get it and ones that don’t. For example my child is not like being taken to another class nor has ever liked it and put into a separate classroom. She only wants and strives to succeed with others. Everyone wants to be a part of the group and feel accepted.We as parents we do understand that they are not the only child in the room, But when singled out negatively it is magnified to them and can eventually lower their self-esteem. We can only hope that talking to her and coaching her and repeating to her will help her someday have a more confident atmosphere. And I have to say the mother that you responded to in the article stating that she may want special treatment to her child is untrue. I’m not sure if you have children or not with ADHD or ADD but as a parent I think she is spot on. Each school year that goes by I only pray that I get a teacher who is consoling at some point throughout the day to make a difference in my child’s day. Each day each year has been a struggle for her And a struggle for me and my husband who have become so very protective of her. Out of the 11 years of her being in school that being her starting at the age of three and now going into the 10th grade I have had two teachers who have made the world a difference in her life and in each of her days. Unfortunately nowadays there are more children with ADD or ADHD and I believe that teachers should be completely knowledgeable of what they are up against and treated as such.