Today there is a guest post about the Glenholme School in Connecticut. They share some helpful information regarding Executive Functioning and tips that parent can follow to help with these challenges.
“Stay Focused!” “Get Organized!” As a parent, you probably have made these statements to your child and yet, he still has difficulty. The culprit, in many instances, is weak executive functioning skills. At The Glenholme School, we recognize these skills are a common challenge for young people with high function autism spectrum disorders and various learning differences. In response, Glenholme promotes the skills young people need to be organized and focused through a global system called “Executive Functioning Skills.”
It is important to act early! This system can help your child focus on the task at hand, as well as prioritize and organize in a way that will set the stage for success in their lives during their school years and beyond. The sooner you start the greater the chance your child will have for success.
Here are a few things you can do:
1. Manage the day – As a parent, you probably have planners. And, your child can too! Teach your child to use a day-planner or calendar. Here, he can record his school work, after-school activities, social opportunities and family time. Whether it is in print or in an app, is not important. The idea is that your child learns to manage his time and sets realistic expectations for each day.
2. Organize homework – Help your child get organized and stay organized with color-coded files and a desk-top storage system for their school work. Make it interesting; children really enjoy label makers and an array of colors. After you teach your child how to label the files, simply divide them by subject in their storage containers.
3. Stash and trash – Does your child have mountains of papers he just can’t seem to get rid of? You can help prevent the unwanted accumulation by teaching your child what to stash and what to trash. This is an essential skill, even for the most organized adults! Teach your child while he is still young what types of documents to keep and throw away as well as how to best organize the materials he is keeping. The storage bins, file drawers and desk tops will thank you!
4. Balancing work and fun – It is important to demonstrate to your child that there is a time for work and a time for play, and that they are both meaningful for a well-balanced life! Use the calendar to establish a predictable routine by setting aside time for studying, afterschool activities, as well as meals and opportunities with the family.
The key to success with your child’s executive functioning system is the ongoing communication you have with each other. This interaction and monitoring ensures the system changes as your child discovers which methods work best.
The executive functioning skills your child learns now will last a lifetime. It is important for your child to practice using the executive functioning systems you set up at home. So that when he is ready to make the next step toward independence, he can use these fundamental skills to move forward with his life — with confidence.
At The Glenholme School in Washington, Connecticut, executive functioning skills are one component of an all-encompassing program designed to help students prepare for higher education and careers. The arts, athletics, equestrian, culinary, in vivo therapy, guidance, extracurricular activities and boarding life, post-graduate and transition program, the summer program, along with an individually aimed educational program are integrated together to teach essential skills to students challenged with high functioning autism spectrum disorders, ADHD, PDD, OCD, Tourette’s, depression, anxiety and various learning difference.
About The Glenholme School:
The Glenholme School is a therapeutic boarding school for young people with high functioning Autism Spectrum Disorders including Asperger’s; ADHD, PDD, OCD, Tourette’s, depression, anxiety, and various learning differences. The program provides a treatment milieu designed to help students become competent, socially and academically. Our learning environment supports and enhances the success of students with special needs. For more information about The Glenholme School and its program, visit the website atwww.theglenholmeschool.org.