Establish a Command Center or Home Office
When your house is set up this way, you’ll have a place to go that is specifically set up to be productive and focused.
Identify Time Stealers, Make An Action Plan
Create a timeline for completion and set reminders or alarms when it’s time to switch from one task to another. This will help prevent distractions from activities unrelated to what needs to be done and provide clarity in knowing how long each task should take.
Use Visual Cues & Organisation Strategies
Utilise Tools for Boosting Executive Functioning Skills
Effective utilisation of tools tailored to executive functioning can also help strengthen understanding and focus. Digital calendars, task management apps and online reminders are a few of the tactical techniques that can be used to stay on top of tasks.
- Timers or structured plan approaches like the Pomodoro Technique can be incorporated in order to keep track of important tasks for better productivity.
- It is recommended to create a “to-do” list of the tasks that need to be completed each day or week. Regular check-ins with this list can help improve focus and efficiency for long-term planning. Popular tools include Evernote for note taking; Trello or Todoist for to do lists.
- Utilising digital calendars with reminders can be very effective in staying on top of goals. These tools are helpful as they serve as visual cues to stay organised & on track. Popular calendar tools include iCalendar and Google Calendar.
- Reminder notifications on your phone can provide alerts when tasks become due or need updating, keeping goals top of mind and encouraging goal completion. Examples including asking Siri, Google Assistant or Alexa to remind you to perform a certain task at a certain time.
Executive Functioning & ADHD: Use online programs
Fortunately there are online programs that can help you improve executive functioning in an easy and fun way.
The 3 Pronged Approach to improve executive functioning skills
To improve executive functioning, we need to target the cause of executive function problems with a three pronged approach which includes skill building strategies.
If you google “executive function help” you’ll see a lot of strategies (e.g. “keep a schedule” and “use visual aids”).
These are compensatory strategies – they are important, but they do not improve executive functioning and are not a long term solution.
Most health professionals now agree that a three-pronged approach to intervention is most effective, involving a combination of individualised compensatory strategies, learning environment modifications and skill building strategies.
- Kofler MJ, Irwin LN, Soto EF, Groves NB, Harmon SL, Sarver DE. Executive Functioning Heterogeneity in Pediatric ADHD. J Abnorm Child Psychol. 2019 Feb;47(2):273-286. doi: 10.1007/s10802-018-0438-2. PMID: 29705926; PMCID: PMC6204311.
Learn more & contact us
Download Executive Function info pack
Everything you need to know, including the basics of executive function and tips for teaching students who struggle with executive function.
Our executive function programs
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This free telephone consultation can help to answer any questions you have about our services. At Sonic Learning we are all experienced teachers and health professionals so parents tend to find it very beneficial to be able to discuss their concerns and receive guidance from our team.