Changing Distractibilty Behavior in the Classroom


Distractibility is a behavior that affects many students in the classroom setting. This is especially true if the child has ADHD or ADD. Distractibility is the difficulty in focusing attention on the subject being presented. The traits associated with distractibility is a short attention span that causes frequents shifts in attention from diversionary actions such as sight, sound, movement, and the sense of touch.

The first mediation that should be attempted to limit distractibility is a reward system. Award the student for staying on task for a certain amount of time. As the child attempts and succeeds at a small span of time, slowly increase the amount of time until the child is able to spend the entire class period focused on the subject matter that is presented.

The classroom may have to be structured in the way to limit distractions. The ticking of a clock or open shades can be a major distraction for the ADD or ADHD child. Posters and other visual aids that have a lot of visual stimulation may distract the student and cause them to stray off of task.

Cubicles or study spaces that limit the visibility of the student can also limit distractibility. These act as blinders so that the peripheral vision does not catch movement from the corner of their eye. Also reducing the academic material down to basic levels and then slowly bringing up to grade level also helps diminish distractibility behavior. By letting the student be successful, it builds their self confidence and their self esteem.


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