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ADD/ADHD

What Teachers See: How ADHD Impacts Learning in Middle School

By Amanda Morin

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Your child’s middle school teachers may notice her struggling more or working less. Some of the symptoms of ADHD may also occur with auditory processing disorder, executive functioning issues, anxiety disorders and mood disorders.

241Found this helpful
What Teachers See: How ADHD Impacts Learning in Middle School

Middle-schoolers with ADHD may have a hard time organizing and completing more complicated work. They can also struggle with peer relationships. Here’s what your child’s teacher may be seeing.

Has Trouble Switching Gears
What the teacher sees:
• Your child does the daily problem on the board but then forgets to turn in her homework.
• Your child comes to class after socializing in the hallway and can’t settle down.
• Your child moves from one subject to the next and can’t remember where she left off reading.

The issue: Kids with ADHD might have trouble multitasking and switching focus to new activities (even if they’re part of a daily routine).

Doesn’t Know How to Fit In
What the teacher sees:
• Your child doesn’t know how to enter a group conversation and stands off to the side.
• Your child gets told by other kids that what she’s saying is “TMI.”
• Your child shows off or clowns around in class in order to get noticed.

The issue: Kids with ADHD often have trouble judging other kids’ reactions, which can lead to awkward social interactions.

Does Things Halfway
What the teacher sees:
• Your child writes three paragraphs of a five-paragraph essay.
• Your child joins a club, but only shows up for a few meetings.
• Your child is enthusiastic about an exciting long-term project but never turns in the final product.

The issue: Kids with ADHD often have difficulty following through and maintaining interest.

Doesn’t Know How to Get Things Done
What the teacher sees:
• Your child has trouble with long division and word problems even though she knows her calculation facts.
• Your child is missing important details in her book report.
• Your child’s science fair project is too simplistic and doesn’t follow the guidelines.

The issue: Kids with ADHD have difficulty with planning, breaking tasks into smaller steps and handling multi-step activities.
Graphic of What Teachers See: How ADHD Impacts Learning in Middle School
Graphic of What Teachers See: How ADHD Impacts Learning in Middle School

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About the Author

Portrait of Amanda Morin

Amanda Morin

A parent advocate and former teacher, Amanda Morin is the proud mom of kids with learning and attention issues and the author of The Everything Parent’s Guide to Special Education.

More by this author

Reviewed by Bob Cunningham, M.A., Ed.M. Dec 04, 2013 Dec 04, 2013

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