Kids learn at a different pace. You have students who learn the lesson in just one go. And then you have others who need a bit more time before they absorb the same concepts and ideas. Most times, though, one of the reasons why your high school students have a hard time understanding the lesson is because of their low attention levels. Plenty of kids are inattentive in class, sometimes not because they mean to be but because they can’t help it. If you have scatterbrain students, what approaches should you use? Here’s a look at some of the most effective ways to help them develop focus and improve their concentration levels.
Determine the Reasons
Determine the likely source of the behavior. Gifted kids are often disorganized, as their quick minds keep them busy, thinking over a thousand things all at nearly the same time. They often find many of their assignments easy. They can finish these tasks in a jiffy and without much thought. Some kids are organized because they’re distracted by technology and some are distracted because they don’t have the skills to succeed in school. By knowing why your students have poor attention spans, you can come up with the right approach. You can adjust the way you teach them or provide them with tasks that offer them a bit more challenge, or that help them develop the skills they need to improve their academic performance.
Teach Them Time Management Skills
Some kids have yet to develop time management as well as organization skills. If you teach classes at the high school then you’ve seen this plenty of times. Talented kids who understand the lessons lightning-quick but who have a hard time keeping their attention focused lack the executive skills to help them. This is commonly seen in kids with ADHD or other learning differences. Some kids have trouble with organization and time management, too. By incorporating lessons that help them learn and master these skills, you can help tame their scatterbrain tendencies.
Talk to the Parents
Let the parents know. Unlike subjects in school, kids don’t receive detailed instructions on how to improve their organization skills, or how they can manage their time wisely. Many of the kids learn these skills through trial and error. Talking to the parents can help. You and the parents must be partners in helping the kids improve and develop skills that help them in school. Organization and time management are crucial study skills that every student needs to learn. Talking to the parents and enlisting their help can yield excellent results.
When you set goals for the kids in your class, go with small goals first. This will make it easier for the kids to achieve success—at least at first. That matters, as it can help motivate them to try harder, even when things get tough. Also, make sure you provide positive feedback. Find a way to point out areas that they can improve on in a way that still motivates them to do better.
Give Them Tools
There are plenty of tools that your students can use to improve their schoolwork and time management skills. Do they have a calendar? Give them one. Do they have planners? What about post-its and notes? What about a daily schedule or a monthly one? Show them how to make use of these things and how helpful they will find these tools.
Your scatterbrain students aren’t going to improve right away. They’re not going to show leaps and bounds in terms of managing their time effectively or finding ways to make the most out of their daily schedule. But that doesn’t mean that there’s no progress. Every little step is a good thing, it’s an improvement.
Show them that you appreciate even the smallest effort they put into improving themselves. Small steps eventually turn into bigger ones. With the amount of encouragement you give them, these kids will remember that positivity and strive harder than ever to improve the way they manage their time. They might not get it right the first few times. But knowing you’re there to encourage them will help them change and improve for the better.
Kids need to learn how to be independent. But there’s nothing wrong with showing them your support. Show them that you believe in them and in their ability to change. Managing their time wisely might seem simple enough and nothing special, but it is. Plenty of adults still struggle to manage their schedule smartly. Kids who learn that skill early on have an advantage. Support them by showing them you believe in them.
Manage the kids in your class with a scatterbrain. They might be easily distracted, but with your help and assistance as well as your support, your students won’t stay that way for long. They will be more than willing to give better time management techniques a try.