Often we think of school breaks as ideal times to relax and possibly take a family vacation. Breaks can also be the ideal time to hit the “reset” button on school performance. It is more challenging to shift patterns that are not working during the school year, while children are busy with activities, test preparation and homework. Spring Break and summer offer the breathing room for a child to be able to approach their school challenges in a totally new way, based on the way their brain is functioning.
We all want our children to succeed in school and life. Parents often provide children with advice or encouragement, when sometimes kids need specific structure and incentives to perform at their best. Considerable research reveals that students’ performance can improve by building the set of mental skills known as Executive Function.
Executive Function is the ability to pay attention, organize, plan and prioritize, start and finish tasks, understand different points of view, regulate emotions and self -regulate to stay on track- all are executive functions crucial to children’s learning and development. Have you ever wondered why some kids are bright but have trouble finishing their homework? Or why they give up easily when a project is complicated? Perhaps the child has difficulty being able to initiate tasks. By approaching such tasks in a different way, they can easily get back on track. Students who are rigid in their thinking tend to get stuck when their approach isn’t working. They may see few options for approaching their problem. A child’s mental rigidity or flexibility can play a large part in their ability to adapt to new ways of approaching school.
Dr. Daniel Amen was featured on the cover of Time magazine for his pioneering work in identifying seven sub-types of Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder as well as the specific lifestyle and counseling approaches that work best for each. Krista Sherinian, LCSW and Jeff Lucas, LCPC,CADC of Dunham Counseling have personally trained with Dr. Amen and other experts on how brain function influences behavior. We have decades of experience in determining the various reasons children struggle in school, and how to create a simple step-by-step plan to help turn the unhelpful behaviors around.
Our Executive Function coaching approaches your child’s school issues with the mental flexibility that often leads to breakthroughs. We use symptom checklists to flag key patterns that indicate certain brain types. Once we narrow down which type your child is, we are able to create a custom game plan to reduce frustration and make learning easier and more fun again.
Time off school is the perfect time to get to the root of your child’s learning challenges in a targeted way and create a plan for a better Spring semester or new school year.
Call Dunham Counseling today at (630)799-0100 if you have questions about Executive Functioning. You do not have to go it alone!