This evening I took a test on ADHD.

No, that's not a punchline. I'm currently in the middle of a special education course that I need for my Clear Credential in order to continue teaching. The previous session's worth of notes, the last chapter and a couple of discussion groups have been occupied by the topic of ADHD.

What makes the whole thing difficult is that I've not only had lots of experience dealing with ADHD kids as a teacher, my own son's public school career was defined in large part by the fact that he was the classic ADHD kid: impulsive, inattentive, constantly in hot water for not handing in work. And, to top it all off, I was my own son's instructor for two years (Earth Science and Biology).

So, I know what ADHD is all about. I know every side of it, with the battles over medication and the behavioral strategies and the excuse-making and the raging and the weeping. I'm an expert.

So, having to sit and listen patiently as a bunch of young twenty-something prospective teachers discuss this from just one point of view, on the basis of limited experience, and constantly thinking about the ordeals that my son, and to a lesser extent myself, went through....it was just tough to take, emotionally. And then, this evening, as I was taking the test, I found myself breathing a little hard and my eyes were smarting. A weird experience.


R. Schauer said...

As a former E/BD teacher for 13 years my thoughts and heart are with you.

I have good news for you, however, as your son gets older the ADHD characteristics abate a great deal. Additionally, they can also be super-creative kids, too. I've often wondered what they are thinking as they tear through a day racing from activity to activity...someday I hope we'll figure it out.

I had good luck with computer activities with ADHD kids...also had some luck with hands on activities that weren't overly complicated and resulted in a completed object such as assembling battery-powered, radio controlled cars and planes and also rockets...they loved them. I also found some success putting them "in charge" of various things helped behavior, too. The biggest obsticle I had was guessing their "moods" since they all seem a bit moody at times, too.

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