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Understanding Autism, OCD and ADHD - Advice for Parents & Carers

10 Tips For Getting Your Child Ready For School

22 October 2020

This resource is brought to you by the ADHD Foundation Neurodiversity Charity. To help your child get ready for school, explore top tips including establishing a routine, developing your child’s independent skills, planning, communication and many more helpful strategies.

Here are ten tips to help get your child ready for school.

1. Buy an alarm clock

Most people with ADHD lack an internal sense of time and children and young people with ADHD often have trouble getting started in the morning. Invest in an effective but fun alarm clock that’s sure to wake them up.

2. Establish a clear morning routine

As a family discuss the time that everyone needs to be out of the door for school and work. Once you agree a plan give it a dry run to see if it works for you all.

3. Set goals for the day

Talk with your child about their goals for the school day and put in place a system of rewards for being ready for school. To engage your child in the rewards system, match it to their interests as this will be most effective.

4. Post a calendar on the wall

Fill the calendar with “must-do” activities related to being ready for school. For example, completing homework or packing their school bag the evening before.

5. Keep in regular contact with your child’s teacher

The more informed you are about your child’s progress in school, the more effective your support can be in preparing your child for school on a daily basis.

6. Let your child choose their stationery for school

To help build your child’s engagement in school, allow them to choose their stationery and accessories during a short shopping trip that has regular breaks and treats along the way.

7. Create a clutter-free study area

To help encourage your child to engage with learning at home clear a space for them to study in, as too much clutter in their field of vision can contribute to a child with ADHD to disengage and shut down.

8. Plan an after school activity

Most children and young people with ADHD need a post-school activity that they enjoy to help them transition to home life. This can help with any ‘homework wars’ when your child may feel that they have to be on-task at all times.

9. Set up a homework routine with your child

Decide if your child will have free time before homework, agree the time it should take and structure in brief breaks.

10. Read with your child in the evening

Use books that feature ADHD and self-esteem. Reading stories about children with ADHD can help youngsters feel better about their symptoms and less alone in their challenges.

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