Executive functioning is a newly defined cognitive process that has gained recognition in schools over the past decade and accommodating students that struggle in this area is often neglected. Inappropriate labels such as “careless” and “lazy” are often placed on this population. Instead of compassion and strategies, they are often intimidated, harassed and mishandled with discipline and inconsistent methods that result in poor grades. For these students anger, frustration, poor motivation and feelings of learned helplessness are common. More and more students are being described with this label and students need to learn strategies for success. Capable and intelligent learners can sabotage their grades by:
- losing materials
- forgetting to turn in assignments
- leaving things to the last minute
- miscalculating or underestimating the amount of time it will take to complete a task
- failing to record homework in an agenda or planner
- leaving needed materials at school
- leaving needed materials at home
- failing to prepare for tests
- failing to plan and break down long-term assignments into manageable tasks or goals
- neglecting to plan for midterms or finals
- missing assignments
- forgetting details
- losing focus and missing important notes or directions
- losing mental stamina and failing to complete a task
- misplacing important materials
- rushing through work
So what can be done to assist these students?
- Help students create a structure daily routine.
- Help students to set priorities.
- Help students create a homework plan.
- Help students break large assignments into manageable chunks.
- Help students to create to do checklists.
- Help students improve their study skills.
- Help students learn note-taking skills.
- Help students learn time management skills.
- Help students learn test taking skills.
- Help students learn memory strategies.
- Help students motivation by offering incentives and positive reinforcement.
To learn all these strategies and more you can purchase my recent publication Planning Time Management and Organization for Success: Quick and Easy Approaches to Mastering Executive Skills for Student.
Here is a free downloadable PowerPoint on the topic: http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Helping-Students-that-Struggle-with-Executive-Functioning
Dr. Erica Warren is the author, illustrator and publisher of multisensory educational materials at Good Sensory Learning and Dyslexia Materials. She is also the director of Learning to Learn and Go Dyslexia, in Ossining, NY. To learn more about her products and services, you can go to https://godyslexia.com/, www.goodsensorylearning.com, www.dyslexiamaterials.com & www.learningtolearn.biz