I have recently put together a series of presentations developed specifically for schools who would like to understand more about their ADHD students.
When you consider that many kids have undiagnosed ADHD and that the reported prevalence of ADHD is 3 to 5% in the general population then you would expect to have at least one to two students in every classroom of 30 who will exhibit ADHD symptoms and behaviours.
"In addition to the tremendously positive feedback from teachers who attended CPD with Richard, I know I speak for colleague Headteachers who found his subsequent input to our KAIS Conference (Kenya Association of International Schools) highly informative. For all school leaders, Richard's insights served to refresh and give us a renewed focus us on the expectations, training and support needed in all schools. Richard was able to capture descriptions of individual children, who we recognise and interact with every day. These are young people who Richard reminded us, deserve a school life that is happy and rounded. Richard’s presentation, based on a genuine and unique perspective, provided the essential ingredients for any successful CPD - a real insight with practical and workable suggestions."
The presentations are delivered in a workshop format and can be tailored to meet the needs of specific departments or faculties. For instance, in a recent trip to Kenya I engaged with over seven independent schools. I delivered a morning session to the Special Education Needs Department and in the afternoon to the rest of the faculty including the sports coaches. In both presentations, there was ample time to share experiences and ideas amongst colleagues and to ask questions and discuss individual pupils' (anonymously) challenges.
Children with ADHD often find school hard going - imagine constantly self regulating your behaviour towards both your peers and teachers, concentrating hard not to get distracted and staying focused on a subject and not fidgeting or blurting things out - it sounds exhausting doesn't it! Well having an empathetic teacher who understands these ADHD related challenges and who does not overreact when they exhibit certain unexpected behaviours because they understand more about ADHD can be a real game changer for many of these children.
Children with ADHD have great strengths, however, they are usually masked to the outside world by negative or inappropriate behaviour that takes precedence in the academic setting. By ignoring the strengths, we end up highlighting the weaknesses and so the negative spiral continues. If however, as a teacher, you can connect with these children and highlight their strengths, you will see a different side to them. They will become more collaborative, respectful, attentive and their behaviour will improve; they will finally feel empowered by you and little by little the positives from one area of excellence will begin to feed into other areas where they are challenged.
Subjects covered in the presentation include:
Effects on childhood development
ADHD diagnosis and medication
ADHD and co‐existing disorders
ADHD in the classroom
ADHD outside the classroom
If you would like me to visit your school and present to the staff faculty, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org