I recently spoke with a dad whose middle school son has been struggling academically due to ADHD symptoms. Missing assignments, disorganization, lost homework, and poor study habits were the norm and each day became a struggle. Fighting over homework was having a seriously negative impact on their father/son relationship as well as the whole family.
Finally, one day, an idea struck the dad who was a business man with a home office. “I realized that my son needed much more support and direct involvement on the front end rather than having me get upset with him late in the evening. So, I decided to turn my office into a war room for my son and I. I went over to Office Max and bought a white board, table and calendar. We track assignments and deadlines and use the visuals to help him break down long term projects. Each night we review the tasks for the day and then work next to each other in the office. It has completely changed the dynamics around homework and his grades have been moving up steadily.”
Great idea dad. While we want our kids to be developing independence and responsible work habits, there are many students with ADHD or learning challenges who struggle each day with organization and follow through. In addition to their neurologically based struggles there is the ever increasing quantity of homework on today’s students. These two factors can end in daily battles for the whole family. By increasing his involvement, this dad took a daily negative chore and turned it into a positive connecting opportunity for both of them.