Children are wired differently when compared to adults. It is common to see children get distracted easily and this can pose some concerns for parents when it comes to academic success and student performance. There are many subject areas for which you can seek help for your child at Megamind Learning Centre.
Although it is common to get distracted sometimes, improving focus in your child is very important. Focus and concentration can be improved through specific tasks and routines. This will help your child perform better in school and throughout life.
Before jumping into how you can improve your child’s focus, it’s important to understand why they may be losing focus in the first place. Multiple factors could be involved, and identifying them will help you see better results in your child.
What could be affecting your child’s ability to focus?
Diet – Not getting the right nutrients can impact your child’s ability to focus. Children who eat too much processed food and not enough fruits and vegetables are likely to lack the nutrients needed to focus. Going to school without having breakfast is also likely to cause your child to lose focus as they may be distracted by their hunger.
Distractions – Cluttered environments with a lot of distractions like noise and digital devices can lead to a loss of focus in your child.
Stress – If your child is stressed out about any personal issues or feels overwhelmed with a large workload, their focus can dwindle.
Boredom – Focus can also be affected by your child feeling bored or uninterested in the task at hand. If your child finds an academic subject to be boring or not challenging enough, their focus will suffer. This can also happen if they just aren’t interested in the subject.
Lack of sleep – Sleep is very important for the body to heal and recover. Children need at least 8 hours of sleep every night. Without this recommended amount of sleep, they are likely to find it hard to focus at school.
Sedentary lifestyle – Leading a sedentary lifestyle may make your child feel lazy and bored which would have a negative effect on their level of focus. Physical activity is crucial to remain active, both mentally and physically.
Mismatched learning style – A lot of traditional classrooms adopt teaching methods that just don’t match the learning styles of children. Not all children learn the same way. Your child’s school may be catering to children with one learning style (verbal) but not to children with other learning styles (visual or kinesthetic). A mismatch in the teaching method used and the learning style of your child could also be affecting their ability to focus in school.
Once you’ve successfully identified what could be causing your child to lose focus in school, you will be able to plan better and use strategies that can help improve their focus. You may even see better performance on graded work with an increase in their focus.
What can you do to increase your child’s ability to focus?
Set clear goals – Children often find it difficult to focus because they don’t know what they should be focusing on. In such cases, setting clear goals for lesson plans will help direct their focus on the right task relevant to the goal. You could suggest that their goal from reading a lesson is to identify all the new words they come across. You could even instruct them to prepare study notes that will help them. Having such goals will make it easier for them to focus.
Break larger tasks into smaller parts – Large tasks may be difficult for your child to comprehend at once. Breaking large school tasks into smaller chunks and asking your child to focus on completing each of these chunks separately will help them focus more.
Focus on one thing at a time – Children may find it difficult to multitask. Too many activities happening at once will only add to their anxiety and cause them to avoid doing the work. If your child needs to finish five different things for school the next day, help them focus on one task at a time without worrying about all five together. They can move on to the next task after they’ve completed the previous ones.
Organize your child’s workspace – An organized workspace, whether at home or in school, may reduce distractions for your child. They should have a study table where they can do their schoolwork. This must be kept clean and organized with everything they’ll need when they sit down to study. Helping them organize their notes properly may also improve focus.
Identify learning styles – If you find that the teaching methods used in your child’s classroom don’t cater to their learning style, bring it to the attention of their teachers. You can also supplement classroom learning with learning at home where you tailor it to their learning style. A lesson on the solar system can be tailored to the learning style of a kinesthetic learner by organizing a visit to the planetarium.
Maintain consistent routines – You should establish consistent routines by organizing:
- Play time
- Homework time
- Study breaks
Sticking to consistent routines will familiarize your child with what needs to be done in the day and help them develop good habits. They’ll be in a more focused mindset when they know that they’re now approaching the time allotted for homework. Proper sleep and eating schedules will also help their bodies develop a rhythm that may make focusing easier.
Get involved in focus-based games and activities – There are many fun games and activities you can do with your child to improve their focus. Jigsaw and crossword puzzles, tongue twisters, and games like spot the difference require them to focus on the task at hand. Doing such activities daily may improve their level of focus.
Abacus Mental Math training is another way to increase their focus. The mental calculations and math facts that they will learn in these sessions can help them increase their overall level of focus.
Engaging in physical activity is also one way of avoiding laziness and boredom in your child and keeping them mentally alert.
Make sure they’re eating right – You need to provide your child with a balanced diet and avoid unhealthy foods as much as possible to boost their focus. The right nutrition is needed to stay focused and by making sure your child is getting the nutrients they need, will boost healthy development.
Practice mindfulness – Teaching your child mindfulness practices early on in life can help them calm down if they feel stressed. They would be able to redirect their focus this way. Encouraging diaphragmatic breathing and disengaging from the work at hand when they feel stressed can make it easier for them to cope with any future stressors.
If you want to know more about how the Abacus Mental Math program at MegaMind Learning Centre helps in improving your child’s focus, please don’t hesitate to give us a call. We’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have.