What teachers see: How ADHD impacts learning in high school

By Amanda Morin

Expert reviewed by Bob Cunningham, EdM

High school isn’t just about academics. It’s also about learning to be self-sufficient and self-aware. Here are examples of ADHD symptoms your teen’s teacher may notice.

Keeps showing up late

  • Your child has trouble getting to school on time.
  • Your child misses the first few minutes of class after lunch period.
  • Your child is on probation with the sports team for being late to practice.

The issue: Kids with ADHD can have trouble keeping track of time.

Challenges authority

  • Your child corrects teachers during lectures.
  • Your child gets into trouble for not following the rules in class.
  • Your child is “fired” from a community service project for being rude.

The issue: Kids with ADHD often speak without taking into account who they’re speaking to.

Is unreliable

  • Your child forgets to come in after school for a tutoring session or to make up a test.
  • Your child misses assignments or hands in incomplete work.
  • Your child leaves fellow students to pitch in on a group project.

The issue: Kids with ADHD can have trouble getting organized and following through.

Doesn’t seem to listen

  • Your child appears not to be interested in what classmates are saying.
  • Your child loses the point of what’s being discussed in class.
  • Your child doesn’t participate in large group discussions.

The issue: Kids with ADHD often have trouble listening and following conversations.

Key takeaways

About the author

About the author

Amanda Morin is the author of “The Everything Parent’s Guide to Special Education” and the former director of thought leadership at Understood. As an expert and writer, she helped build Understood from its earliest days. 

Reviewed by

Reviewed by

Bob Cunningham, EdM has been part of Understood since its founding. He’s also been the chief administrator for several independent schools and a school leader in general and special education.