I originally created this page in May 2012 when my son was newly diagnosed with ADHD and learning disabilities. Learning just what ADHD looks like for my son, and what his specific learning challenges are, has been quite an adventure. Over the past four years we’ve been dealing with schools and these issues, and in February of 2016 made the decision to switch to homeschooling after Little Man had a mental health crisis because of Anxiety. About a year or so ago, I discovered my new favorite resource: the website, Understood. It is geared towards parents and teachers of students who have attention and learning issues.
This website is a place where parents and teachers of students who have attention and learning issues. The site is extensive, covering topics on education about attention and learning issues; what they are, how they impact a person, and ways to support and help them.
There is a large section that covers school and learning; topics ranging from having your child evaluated by their school, to ways to support them in school (504 Plan, IEP, accommodations, and more), your child’s rights, tutors, and links to fabulous assistive technologies (I found some great apps here to help my son).
The friends and feelings section tackles the social challenges of living with attention and learning issues.
And the you and your family section has advice for things like everyday life, managing siblings, the challenge of outings, your relationships, and taking care of yourself.
Their community and events section includes live advice from experts, events happening, connecting with other parents in your shoes, and online support groups and a variety of blogs. A few of the blog tops include the latest and greatest information about attention and learning issues, and parenting a child with these issues.
I love the Parent Toolkit. It has a section called Through Their Eyes, where you can go through simulations of what it’s like to do school work and tasks when you have attention challenges and learning issues. This is a great one to share with your student’s teacher. The Tech Finder is a bonanza of links to apps, programs, and websites that support your student. There are many that are free or low cost, and some you buy. I found a free app, Snap Type, that lets you take a photo of a worksheet with a tablet, click anywhere on the photo, and start typing. The completed worksheet can be printed out or emailed to the teacher. Great for students who struggle with writing. In the Toolkit, you can personalize the info you want to see on the website, and there is also a parenting coach.
This website is huge!!
Best selling New York Times author and world-renowned ADHD expert, Dr. Ned Hallowell offers groundbreaking advice on how to survive in an ultra-competitive, ultra fast, attention deficit society while remaining sane, how to raise happy children, how to manage worry, the art of forgiveness and how to bring the best out of your employees. He also offers a prescriptive guide that shows how to get the most out of life with Attention Deficit Disorder.
There are several links on Dr. Hallowell’s site, including defining ADHD, how to parent a child with ADHD, treatments for ADHD, a blog, and a link to a site for teachers to learn how to teach children with ADHD.
Since this page was created, we had a medication trial with our son, trying 3 different medications. Each of them gave our son intolerable side effects with no benefit, so he is not using any medication. I am finding that energy healing is the only thing that has been beneficial for him, and has absolutely no side effects.
I see that ADHD is a blanket term for symptoms that have unknown causes. Some people have ADHD and experience a lot of hyperactivity, and find that when they introduce stimulants to their brain in some way (chemicals or exercise), it helps the brain to regulate. Some people who have ADHD don’t experience much hyperactivity, but are very quickly bored unless they find something they are interested in; and then they can hyperfocus for hours on that one thing.
I also see that ADHD is often comorbid with other issues such as learning disabilities (dyslexia) and anxiety. Little Man has this trifecta.
ADDitude Magazine and Facebook Page. Great resource for articles about ADHD and ADD, from the perspective of people living with the diagnosis, to people who love them, teach them, and work with them. Also has articles about conditions that commonly affect people with ADHD, such as sensory issues, anxiety, and dyslexia.