Attention Deficit Disorder Student Coping Strategies: Top Tips and Advice

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Start the Year Right

One of the first attention deficit disorder student coping strategies you’ll need is to start the academic year on the right foot. If the first time you hit the books is several weeks into the school year, you will already be behind and no doubt frustrated. Instead, start preparing for the school year at least a week before the first day of school. Make sure that you have all of the materials you will need, including plenty of pens or pencils, paper, and a binder with dividers. Pack an extra box of school supplies to keep in your locker for when you start running low.

Perhaps more importantly, write up your goals for the school year before school even starts. With a friend, parent, tutor, or ADHD coach, discuss the small steps you will need to take to reach those goals. For example, if you want to ace your math tests this year, you may want to decide to spend at least five minutes a night doing several problems from your math book to review the information you learned that day.

Create a Support System

Everyone needs a support system, and when you get frustrated by your ADHD, you’ll need one more than ever. Your friends, family members, and even teachers can be members of this support system, but think about whether you could use a bit more support. If so, consider finding an ADHD coach, starting a study group, or joining a support group for students with ADHD. Tutors can also help you organize your schedule.

Schedule, Schedule, and Schedule Some More

The key to keeping on top of your homework and on studying efficiently for tests is to make a schedule and stick to it. And to succeed you need to make the schedule doable. That means that planning to cram for three hours the night before an exam is bound to fail. Instead, study for the exam for half an hour each night for a week before the big day.

Break the half hour period into two fifteen minute segments, and give yourself a five minute break after the first segment to recharge. You can use this break to check your email, feed the dog, or just get up and walk around. If you’re nervous that you’ll never come back from the break, set an alarm for five minutes later and come back right away when you hear the bell or buzzer.

Study Effectively

If you’re interested in something, you’ll remember it. But how do you get yourself interested in 18th century European history or in solving linear equations if these subjects do not appeal to you?

Try to find bits and pieces from the material that you relate to your life. Does a French king’s attitude remind you of your grandfather? Does pairing up equations look like matching up dates at the prom? Be creative, and find a way to care about what you are learning. Try using different study techniques as well.

In addition, make sure that you are studying the way that you study best, based on your learning modality. For example, if you are an auditory learner, read your notes out loud rather than to yourself. If you are a visual learner, try making charts and diagrams to visually display information. These attention deficit disorder student coping strategies can help you succeed in school, and eventually, in life.


This post is part of the series: If You Have ADD

Do you have ADD? If so, take a look at this series of article that can help you cope and overcome your disability.

  1. Top Coping Strategies for Students with Attention Deficit Disorder