Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is a very popular term to use when describing children but it’s often misunderstood and misused. After all, how many of us put things off and sometimes have trouble focusing?
The Centre for ADHD Awareness, Canada (CADDAC) describes the disorder as “One of the most common disorders in Canada, and it doesn’t discriminate. It impacts people from all walks of life and backgrounds. It affects more than a million Canadian men, women, boys and girls of all ages.”
Once an ADHD diagnosis has been made, families and students with ADHD need support. Joanne, our Director, reached out to Laura MacNiven, Director of Health Education at Springboard Clinic for her recommendations on how to build an action plan that encourages home-school communication.
Here are three of Laura’s tips to help parents to effectively communicate with their child’s teacher and school team:
1. Be a step ahead: Set up an appointment with your child’s school team at the beginning of the school year. Bring examples that have worked in the past, and take the time to connect as early as possible.
2. Bring your knowledge: It can feel like a tough decision to share personal information with the school. While it’s not a straight-forward answer, open dialogue between home and school can help families feel engaged and empowered. The more information you can provide the school, the better they can support your child. If appropriate, have a psycho-educational assessment, meet with your child’s doctor, or spend time asking their tutor what works best for your child.
3. Create a sustainable plan to check back in: With experimentation and change, there are often steps forward, and often steps backward. Getting the right strategies takes time, so try to meet regularly for shorter periods of time. It sets everyone up for more success.
A version of this post first appeared on Dr. Dina.