I don’t have any children who have ADHD, and honestly, I don’t believe it exists. I think children who have been diagnosed with ADHD are really suffering from boredom, and if a parent catches on soon enough, it is possible, in my opinion, to reduce how much boredom your child suffers, and reacts to. In other words, it is possible to build up a ‘boredom-tolerance’, if you will, in a child.
One way to do this is to teach your child that it’s actually ok to daydream. The schools will have a fit with that, but if a child is bored, would you rather have him or her quietly staring out the window with a nice grin on his or her face, or acting up to get a reaction from others who are around? This builds imagination, as well, in a child. You would need to teach your child not to do this during lectures, but remember, this is an adult world, and sometimes kids get overloaded with our expectations of them. A short vacation from the demands of ‘the grownups’ where a child can be whoever he or she wants to be, well, honestly, its’ something adults could use, too.
Daydreaming can also be used to help your child solve problems he or she is having with others, by imagining how they might react to possible solutions your child imagines. It’s not perfect, but it opens up possibilities that might otherwise not exist for your child.
Another option is to give your child a writing tablet or a doodle pad. Explaining to your child’s teacher that it is to be used by your child to keep them occupied when there is no lecturing and all class work has been completed, and there is nothing else for your child to do, will help. Some schools seem to have teachers, however, who prefer all students conform, and sit quietly while doing nothing. If your child’s teacher is like this, you might find it very beneficial to talk to the principal, as well. This is especially important if your child’s school no longer has recess.
Speaking of not having recess, many students are losing this needed activity, and only have gym class now. Some only have it once or twice a week. Others find themselves only having it for half a year. If this has happened to your child, you need to take the lead and start teaching your child how to be physically active. There are many ‘exercises’ that are fun, and you don’t need to do boring ones. Look up Laurie Berkner’s video CD’s. Hers are great for kids from ages about two to the tweens. She has kids in her videos who are very active, and you and your child can spend some good quality time together watching her videos. I know there are others, but she is our family’s favorite.
One other thing is that not only are kids losing recess, but they are also losing art and music classes. Taking up activities at home in artistic endeavors can be a helpful boost for your child by keeping little hands busy through art. There are several different kinds of mediums you can use. There are several crafts books aimed at just kids, with several of those incorporating math, science, holidays, social studies, and other subjects. Music can be used to keep your child active, like I said above, but it can also be something your child makes with different objects around the home. There are also books on that, as well.
Get your kid a camera, or even better yet, one that can take stills as well as short video clips. Teach him or her how to make short videos. Get creative and use different props, either found around the house or help your son or daughter to make their own props. Simple things can go a long way. Your child can upload these to emails you help send out, or even upload them to a free YouTube account. You yourself have to set up the account, however. It’s also a great way to not only brag about your child’s skills, and also possibly talents, but also very nice for keeping those far away relatives updated about what it going on in you and your child’s lives.
These are not the only options, of course, to keep your child occupied. They are good for ideas, and another one that might help your child is brainstorming for other activities. These can be solo, or for a combination of family members. Not all need cost you money. Collecting things, for example, can cost nothing or very little. Making up simple (or more complex, depending on age) games can also be fun, and then trying out the games themselves can also ward off boredom.
Many schools will try to tell you your child ‘must’ be medicated, regardless of the side effects experienced. They don’t tell you how school just isn’t enjoyable for kids any more. School is full of exams, which cause stress, bullies, which cause anxiety, no-tolerance regulations, which cause a myriad of problems for everyone, and these all add up, and can affect anyone’s child. It’s true that many children are much different at home than they are at school, but that doesn’t mean you and your child should have to deal with the side effects of medication used for ADHD, especially when your child’s behavior might stem from the environment at school and not something internal in your child.