A Blog post
How to Deal With Distractions
- Apr 05, 2018
- Jared Wells
- In Uncategorized
- 0 Comments
Everyone has a plan until... ...a friend sends a text message ...or they remember they have something else they need to do ...or they have to look up the name of the singer singing the song they're listening to One of the most important skills we help our students with is learning how to plan. That it, how to bravely face a seemingly insurmountable mountain of unexamined tasks and turn it into an accomplishable schedule. Let me tell you, it is a load off of the mind of any student to actually understand the scope of what they need to do, and to see a clear path to getting it done... ...and then, right when the appointed time come to begin the first assignment, little brother comes in wanting to play. Well, what's the harm in that right? Then afterwards, the student notices the kitchen could be tidied up a bit. Then, forgetting about the homework, he sits down to play x-box for an hour. How can we help students prepare to deal with the inevitable distractions and interruptions that can derail even the best laid plan? 1) Identify the most common distractions/interuptions, and talk to your son or daughter about how they will deal with them as they come up. For example: -I know my phone is a distraction. I'll put it on DND and set it across the room -I know that video games are a distraction. I'll put the controllers in the living room. -I know that browsing the internet is a distraction. I'll install stayfocused on chrome to block distracting websites. This is simply another form of planning...planning for how the plan might go awry! The key is to involve the student in the discussion, having them identify the distractions, and helping them to problem solve how to deal with them as they inevitably arise. This problem solving process works both preventatively, and as a way to improve for next time after a distraction derails them. 2) Have reminders to bring attention back to the task at hand This can be as simple as offering to check in on the student every 10 minutes or so (but make sure that you have buy in from your son or daughter...otherwise it might feel like nagging!) An alarm that goes off every 10 minutes or so can help bring attention back. As can having a kitchen timer that (quietly!) ticks in the background, timing spurts of work for the student. I use the Focus Time IOS app...it's gently ticking in the background is a constant reminder of the task I've committed to accomplish. 3) Rehearse dealing with the distraction. The key here is to physically interrupt the distraction. For example, maybe mindlessly opening up Facebook in a web browser is a source of distraction. If so, come up with an interrupting behavior (close the browser and do 10 squats, for example). Once you and your son/daughter have come up with ideas for the behavior, rehearse them! It sounds silly, but the way to break a habit is to REINFORCE the habit that you want to instill...no better way to do that then act it out! If I have trouble getting up out of bed in the morning when my alarm goes off, before I go to sleep the following night, I rehearse getting up instantly by setting my alarm. It sounds ridiculous, but it works! Finals are coming up soon for La Jolla High and Muirlands Middle...is your son or daughter ready? Call or email to schedule some time for class support or organizational/planning support today! Wells Academic Solutions 619.884.4233
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