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Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, Essay Example

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Essay

Definition:  Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a chronic condition that results in an inability to regulate attention, activity, and inhibit impulsive behaviors.  The symptoms of this neurobiological disorder can change on a daily or hourly basis, and often have accompanying emotional and social issues (Heward, 2008).

Causes:  ADHD is thought to be highly genetic in origin, with frequency occurring at a level of seven in ten, when at least one parent has demonstrated symptoms of ADHD.  Researchers have found that people with ADHD may have decreased dopamine levels in certain parts of their brain, as well as decreased blood flow to the brain’s frontal lobes (CADDAC, n.d.).

Prevalence:  Current research suggests that 1 to 3 children in every classroom in North America suffer from some form of ADHD, making it that much more important that teachers are aware of accommodation and teaching strategies that can be helpful for children with ADHD (CADDAC, n.d.).

Classroom Accommodations:

The following suggestions can assist educators in reinforcing positive behaviors to help eliminate negative behaviors.  CADDAC (n.d.) reminds educators that when planning a program, it is important to remember that “behavior is the result of a need not being met.”

Classroom Environment:

  • High structure, quiet classroom
  • Avoid open-concept classrooms
  • Opportunities for physical exercise

Teacher Presentation/Strategies:

  • Extra time for processing
  • Organizational coaching
  • Non-verbal signals and gesture cues

Materials:

  • Tracking aids
  • Concrete, hands-on materials
  • Reduced homework/course loads

Assessment:

  • Prompts to refocus
  • Reading of test or exam to student
  • Alternative test formats such as computer and oral exams

References

CADDAC. (n.d.). Information for educators on ADHD. Centre for ADHD Awareness, Canada. Retrieved from http://www.caddac.ca/cms/page.php?50

Heward, W.L. (2008). Exceptional children: An introduction to special education. 9th ed. New   York, NY: Prentice Hall.

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