Is your child “labelled” with ADD? You are not alone
By Storm Steen
Something new is upon us in the 21st century. With the increased popularity of media entertainment and the rise of television as the primary form of entertainment for children, the youth of today have grown accustomed to the fast-moving pictures and applications found on screens. The result of this has been a tremendous increase in the diagnosis of ADD in children and the inability to concentrate on education.
While ADD is now a more common diagnosis than ever before and pills to “assist” with it are easily and frequently prescribed, the standard of education in our country has dropped drastically in comparison to previous decades, where ADD was a less diagnosed reality. How does this make sense now that medication is now more frequently prescribed to assist with this issue?
The only way to effectively determine a solution for ADD is to gain an understanding of it. In a nutshell, ADD is more a heightened sense of awareness of your surroundings that effects ones ability to concentrate on one particular thing. Ultimately, your energy and concentration is divided between so many aspects, that you are unable to focus completely on just one.
For example: Imagine you are standing in the middle of a room, listening to an important conversation with the person next to you. All of a sudden, someone in the front of the room starts singing loudly, followed by clapping to your left, whistling to your right and someone behind you, tapping on your shoulder. This is what ADD feels like.
During my schooling in the 90s, I was personally diagnosed with ADD in the second grade. After the personality-altering effects of the standard medication became apparent, my parents made the decision to explore alternative options.
With the help of a specialised occupational and child therapist, we were able to experiment with methods of positively focusing my energy to achieve the ability to concentrate at an effective level.
Think about it. When you are interested in a topic of conversation, you are more likely to pay attention to it over anything else. If you don’t enjoy the topic of conversation, your eyes might glaze over and you find yourself preoccupied with other subjects around you. The same theory can be applied to the concentration levels of ADD.
I have always had a passion for music and therefore can pay attention to it a lot longer than most other things. Through many hours of expensive therapy, we were able to apply this passion and positively focus it on my school work, turning learning content into songs that I would sing to myself. To this day, I am able to sing my entire 12thgrade biology syllabus to anyone that is interested (not that many are…).
Children’s holiday workshops and camps often implement this very same method in their “Learning Through Play” programs, that have often been designed by leading specialists for this very purpose. Teaching children to positively focus their energy through enjoyable activities that incorporate aspects of learning and life skills can have a tremendously benificial outcome for all children, especially those suffering with ADD.
The skills learned at these camps not only improve learning ability in day-to-day life, but leave children with higher self esteem, confidence levels, social skills and leave their personality traits healthy and in-tact.
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