Do they ready know how to study? - CHADD's ADHD Pare...

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Do they ready know how to study?


I am finding that our son who is 12 years old does not know how to study. I would not be surprised if he also doesn't know how to take notes in class.

He always come home "I don't have any homework". So my husband and I have been making him outline the next steps for his classes. So for example he just finished Ch. 7 and we will start with CH. 8 going over all the questions and Voc. Words. Once we are done with that we will make flash cards. So that by the time he has the test he understands most of the information. This might take 30-40 min. a night.

I am learning he has never done this nor has anyone taught him how to be successful in studying.

What are your thoughts are your kids able to learn the information and are ready for their tests. I always assumed he knew how to study.. part of why he gets F's. The other major reason us he rushes through to get done.

20 Replies

You nailed it on the head! My 12 year old has never developed those skills either. I did my usual and have been reading and researching and even went to a conference about this- it is called executive functions. Common in our kiddos, it is something that doesn’t come naturally and needs repetition and practice. We are (among so many other imperative and yet basic things her schedule and IEP lacks) piecing in a class to teach executive function and study skills. We found out at the meeting with her school yesterday that they have had such a class for years and she has already missed the foundations. Why, with our continued asking for such assistance, are they just mentioning this now, in March?!? _______________. Yeah. They’ve got nothing. Per usual.

Thanks for replying. Yes I do think it is executive functioning. But here is the funniest thing. After going over the chapter (before he got this weekly assignment, he knew EVERY answer correctly and didn't need to look in the chapter..( even the true false) unbelievable! So it is either he doesn't want to do the work, which I don't believe becuase he gets rewarded for that (this is usually the case) he lacks the skills to study. ..

So we have a new game plan.. outline the chapters early.. maybe on the weekend!

That is funny- my husband who thankfully does a lot of the homework with her (she is a daddy’s girl) just started the same tactic this week too..... if/when my daughter will do the work. She is currently refusing to to anything. At all. It is making me beyond angry and I am honestly at a point of resentment because I spend all of my days working on her IEP and any other related stuff to get her educated and she literally refuses and throws tantrums of two year olds. And honestly she has come to realize the most terrible secret- we don’t have really any cards to hold. She lives without her phone. She doesn’t do much socially giveiwe are still in the process of adjusting to our new state and home and stuff. I am at a loss. I guess this is a start of another post though. I need help.

Alliea70- great discussion, having a "card" to hold is great. I am not sure if she takes medication and if you give something to her during the time she has to so homework, but I know that is the main reason he will do his work. I keep it very short, no more than 20 min. Then give him an excersise break. Then maybe one more session. I also make sure he is good and full of food ahead of homework time, so that is not impacting him. I wonder if her phone could be the card and allowing her to have it if she did X number of pages. Start small on the work and BIG on the reward, then work toward the opposite. In CA middle schoolers love Dutch Bros.. (the Rebel Smootie is all the rage) so if he does really good I make a run through the drive thru.

Best of luck!

Identical for my son! Almost like he has a terrible time to get to start a task. When he does, it goes quick and he learns in no time!

Jrandis in reply to Alliea79

Study skills have to be learned. Most kids don’t learn it naturally.

Wow! I thought I was the only one! It amazes me the things that are not being taught. They barely send a text book home in our district - study skills are non existent. Note taking is also like a foreign language. But we sure do have a GIANT pile of handouts to feed the fire pit at the end of the year. ..😑

Agree on all these comments. One additional item that we came to realize this year, is the med journey has been such a long one, that has always been the focus. Now, ADHD is way more controlled, and he has to relearn HOW to school. We even went through a period of time, when his meds were all dialed in... and he was ACTING the part, because he didn’t know it was OK to be something different. Threw our entire family for a loop... fast forward 6 months, and son is good on meds (outbursts to a couple a day), but sibling is having a hard time understanding their new relationship! School is a beast for all children... I have one with and one without challenges. BOTH struggle in school, even though my NON-challenged child has A’s and is beyond her grades. It’s normal parents! Some of their behaviors are JUST being kids... and that scares me too! Help me with puberty...driving....girl too much!

Thanks for your honest post.. if you had any advice about the med. Journey what would it be?

The ironic thing is one of my boys who doesn't have ADHD, but who does have RAD which causes him some similar problems in school, took a "study skills" class last semester. He wasn't actually taught how to study in that class. It was just a class that gave the kids time to catch up on their work.

If you're going to have a class that's labeled study skills, I believe you should teach the kids some actual skills. Many kids these days think that 5 to 10 minutes of studying is enough to prepare for a test and then wonder why they failed it.

Jrandis in reply to reg2018

Unfortunately that happens a lot in schools I noticed. It’s really not honest wording. Should be called completing homework time.

Thank you for this comment. I am not sure how they think they will gain the knowledge. It is so great how in 15-20 min. Daily he master a lot of the information. We will still do flash cards with Voc. To learn more but it has been successful. We only have 5 ch. Left. The hard part is this is only 1 class.

Flash cards are great! I love them.

It takes time and trial and error to figure out what study methods will work best for our kids to learn. There isn't only one way to study. I also have ADHD and I found that the more senses I engaged the better chance I had of remembering the information. By the time I hit college, these were my study habits: I would read my notes, I would highlight important information, I would read them outloud, I would rewrite my notes and I would retell the information to others to make sure I really understood what I was studying. If I couldn't retell it then I knew I didn't understand it fully.

Great tips may I can have be the teacher and me the student to "retell" the information.

willandgrace in reply to reg2018

Well said! And I recently read that if you can't explain what you've learned in a very simple and fundamental way then you don't fully understand it. I think you hit the nail on the head in how to study!

I was teacher to quite a while and also worked at Sylvan Learning Center where among other things I taught study skills. I think many schools do not teach them but absolutely should. They shouldn’t expect kids to know how to study. You are doing a great job by teaching him! I would let the administrators know how you feel about this and if there is an effort to teach study skills in your sons school district. Good for you for recognizing what he needed and spending time helping him to be successful in school and life!

There is a great book called NeuroTeach. Addresses this kind of thing. SO INTERESTING. If kids were taught differently, they wyouldn t need to worry so much about "studying" and memorizing.

My 14-yr-old son has difficulty studying on his own. He struggles with paying attention in class and he rarely takes notes unless prompted directly by the teacher. We generally need to work with him to study for tests and keep him on task with homework that requires a lot of reading and/or writing. Middle school has been much harder for him due to the fact that the expectations are greater. This may be the reason that your 12-yr-old is struggling. He may not be ready for the responsibility of learning on his own. You may want to discuss this with his teachers to find out what you can do to be proactive about his learning, though it sounds like you are already taking some very positive steps. Above all, let him know that he is a great kid and you want to help him succeed in school. God made him for a very special purpose!

Our sons sound like twins.. we placed him in a curriculum support class for that reason. With our son it is setting him up for sucess then he will run with it.

Thanks for your comments.

That's great! I hope it goes well.

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