If you’ve been reading our blog for a while, you may recall seeing our ADHD homeschool schedule for this school year. Well, we’re about two months in, and I’ve already changed it.
We still do most of the activities on the schedule, but the time and general format of the day has evolved quite a bit. When you’re homeschooling children with ADHD, you have to start with a regular daily routine. Once that’s established, you can begin developing your homeschool schedule. Our problem was that I started the schedule before the routine was in place. Bad idea.
So, today I’m sharing a few suggestions for how to develop a good homeschool schedule for ADHD kids. If nothing else, you can learn from me about what NOT to do. 🙂
How to Develop a Homeschool Schedule for ADHD Kids
Start with the most important subjects first.
In our original schedule for this year, we started with copywork, math, and reading. That seems to work and I didn’t change it. In our family, handwriting, math, and reading are our most important subjects, so we schedule them first.
If we get the morning off to a good start, it’s usually the best time of day for our most intensive lessons. Tigger, in particular, struggles with concentrating on her math work. She does best when it’s one of our first subjects of the day.
I’ve also noticed that she tends to do her math assignment and then promptly forget how to do it later. A few times a week, I give her a worksheet in the afternoon that contains the same concepts we learned that morning. Then she remembers it better and I don’t have to start from scratch during the next lesson.
Make room for their personal interests.
Do your kids have a favorite subject? If so, make plenty of room for that in your schedule. People with ADHD may struggle to pay attention in most areas, but if the subject is something they love, they can stay on it for hours at a time. This is called “hyperfocus“.
Roo can play with Legos for hours. Literally, hours. Tigger can read books for hours. Both of them lose interest in math within about 20 minutes. 🙂 So, if they’re enjoying an activity or a lesson, I don’t insist on stopping it at a certain time. As long as they’re interested, I let it continue (within reason, of course).
Generally, I schedule room for their interests after lunch. That way, I don’t have to rush them through something so that we can complete another subject.
Be willing to make adjustments.
As I mentioned earlier, I’ve had to tweak our schedule already, and that highlights an important part of homeschooling kids with ADHD: flexibility. Since the ADHD brain operates sporadically, there’ll be days when your kids seem “on” and days when they seem “off”. Sometimes they’ll even switch between “on” and “off” in the same day, or even within the same hour.
While you’ll want to maintain the same general routine, you may have to move a few things around or even skip a couple of subjects. That’s why it’s important to schedule your most important subjects first. Once those are taken care of, you won’t feel so much pressure to complete every other thing if your kids are having an “off” day.
Have you made a homeschool schedule for ADHD kids? Do you have any tips to share? Tell us about your experiences in the comments!
This post is part of our “31 Days of ADHD Homeschooling” series! Stop by tomorrow for Day 10: The WORST Homeschooling Method for Kids with ADHD!