Sitting in a classroom all day is hard for any child, but sitting still and listening for an entire school day can be particularly challenging for a student with ADHD. Luckily, available strategies can help kids with ADHD better cope with the traditional classroom environment, like classroom fidgets for ADHD.
Fidgets are small, nondisruptive toys or objects with sensory appeal that kids can fidget with during the school day. ADHD expert Sydney Zentall explains that fidgets improve the classroom experience because doing two things at once allows a child's brain to better hone in on the primary task. For classroom-friendly fidgets to help your child focus at school, check out the five great ideas below.
1. Kneaded Erasers
A kneaded eraser is a multifunctional fidget. Kneaded erasers resemble Play-Doh or putty, and they can erase pencil marks on paper. Kneadable erasers are a good choice for a fidget because they can be endlessly kneaded by a child's hands and are also a useful school supply.
2. Fidgeting Finger Springs
Rubbery finger springs are ideal for classroom fidgeting. The soft, flexible strings can be pulled back and forth and slipped over children's fingers, and they are quiet and unobtrusive, so they won't detract from the classroom environment.
3. Sand-Filled Stress Balls
Often used as a stress reliever for adults, sand-filled stress balls are a great fidget object because they help release tension and boost focus. Made of tough balloons filled with sand, they are small enough to be kept in a desk.
4. Chair Rubber Bands
Sometimes, a fidget that engages your child's hands is too distracting. Instead, attach a thick, tough rubber band around the front two legs of his chair. The rubber band allows him to fidget with his feet, kicking or bouncing them off the band under the table. Bouncy Bands has developed bands just for this purpose.
5. Markers and Paper
While doodling used to be discouraged during class, it has proven to be an excellent fidget activity for ADHD students. Send your children to class with some felt-tip markers and a small pad of paper. They can doodle while they listen to their teacher, and they'll have a portfolio of their drawings at the end of the school year.
If you want to help your child with ADHD focus in the classroom, consider getting him an object that he can use to expend energy but that won't distract him from the teacher or lesson too much. Just make sure you okay the fidget with your child's teacher before you send him to school with it in his backpack.
If you suspect your child has ADHD or has already been diagnosed with ADHD, contact us online or find a center near you to learn more about how the Brain Balance Program can help.