Are you aware that Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder ADHD is responsible for the average and below par performance of 6.4 million school-going children in America (ADHD: Data and Statistics, 2018)? And did you know that people suffering from ADHD have the intelligence quotient (IQ) of similar range with their fellows, age mates, and classmates who perform better than them (ADHD: Data and Statistics, 2018)? The statistic of 2017 reveals that in America, ADHD is prevalent and affects a substantial number of school-going children between the ages of 4 to 17, significantly affecting their output in class (ADHD Numbers: Facts, Statistics, and You, 2017). ADHD is a disastrous limiting condition with adverse effects on children's school performance and should be treated with utmost caution to help remodel the interest and confidence of students in academics.
ADHD is a mental disorder, a neuro-development condition that interferes with the individual's ability to control their concentration span while undertaking a given task. A child suffering from ADHD lacks the natural ability to calm down and become attentive in class during lessons (Douglas Sjowall, 2017). The child is easily distracted by any other thing happening in their immediate environment apart from the academic task they should be participation in. The excitement is to join in the other non-restrictive activities. Once a child's attention has deviated from the lesson, they are considered physically present but mentally detached. This means that the integral concepts that a child could learn at the time others are learning to escape them. Non-participation means the child has neither understood the new ideas or if they have; partially. They are less likely to seek clarification for the half-understood points too (L. Eugene Arnold, 2015). It is likely to follow that the child with ADHD will not perform well in examinations because of the poor grasp of the contents.
Apart from the fact that children with ADHD have a lapse in mental dedication to academic tasks, they too suffer from serous physical deregulation. These children find it extremely hard to control their movements, especially in situations where rules and regulations demand that as a compulsory part of codes of conduct to be observed (Annemarie van der Kolk1, 2015). The physical restriction is a challenge to these children. Simply sitting and staying in one posture is among the most uncomfortable and 'tormenting' experiences a child with ADHD would want to undergo. The urge to change position, move around or quit classroom is compulsive. The child must naturally find a way to fulfill this desire (Maria Keilow, 2015). Either an observant teacher will see the discomfort and act concerned, or the child will gather the courage to request permission to leave the class. From this observation, it is evident that a child with ADHD focuses more on answering the involuntary urge to move while their classmates are busy internalizing the taught concepts. There is no provision that lessons will stop to wait for them as they go through their phase of wandering about. This is a serious way through which these children get very little out of the lessons.
Living with ADHD among kids has yet another tremendous challenge; the inability to regulate their emotional drives. Most often, these children tend to have innate anxiety. They feel frustrated by the fact that things do not go their way and that people do not understand them. This, mixed by the fact they feel different from their classmates, especially if it dawns on them that they fail in challenging subjects like Mathematics and they are mocked, creates an indelible debilitating feeling among them (Douglas Sjowall, 2017). Their esteem usually gets punctured. These emotional frustrations impair the ability to learn, to write and to answer test questions. If not addressed through therapy, the students become increasingly disengaged from class duties like working on assignments or contributing to group works (Maria Keilow, 2015). To put it more succinctly, the high-level irritability, uncontrolled reactiveness, and spontaneity in action make it difficult for children with ADHD to be social and sociable. They end up in endless trouble in schools falling into trouble with the law and getting punished unnecessarily. These children begin feeling like misfits, and if no therapy and rehabilitation is done in good time, they easily evolve into social pariahs (L. Eugene Arnold, 2015). These are parts of the larger issues that make academics unattractive to the children living with ADHD thereby contributing to their poor performances in schools.
For a student to get the most out of class and perform well, they have to dedicate three things without fail; the physical, mental and emotional presence. It would be unfair if we fail to mention that the three aspects of class attendance are inextricable. None can work in isolation, and the absence of any of the three will severely jeopardize learning. Learning is exclusively a participatory activity in which an individual must fully engage in. Distractions that impede learning must be kept at the barest minimum. ADHD is a problem that stands between most of the children and their quest for academic excellence. The condition arrests a child's focal point of learning and wrestles it away from them when it is needed for academic concentration. It is important for the government, the medical sector, and the parents to collaborate in formulating sound strategies to curb the effects of this condition inn a way that reduces the effects it has on the children. Stigma targeting the children suffering from this condition must be fiercely discouraged.
ADHD Numbers: Facts, Statistics, and You. (2017, October 11). Retrieved from The ADD Resource Center: https://www.addrc.org/adhd-numbers-facts-statistics-and-you/
ADHD: Data and Statistics. (2018). Retrieved from Center for Disease Control and Prvention: https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/adhd/data.html
Annemarie van der Kolk1, 3. M. (2015). A Systematic Review of Literatures on Factors Associated with Educational and Academic Performance in Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Creative Education,, 163-179.
Douglas Sjowall, G. B.-M. (2017). Neuropsychological deficits in preschool as predictors of ADHD symptoms and academic achievement in late adolescence. Child Neuropsychology, 1-19.
L. Eugene Arnold, J. K. (2015). Long-Term Outcomes of ADHD: Academic Achievement and Performance. Journal of Attention Disorders, 1-13.
Maria Keilow, A. H. (2015). The Effects of Medical Treatment of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) on Children's Academic. The Rockwool Foundation Research Unit, 1-40.
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