Hallmark symptoms of inattention, hyperactivity and impulsivity or ADHD

Teachers dictate the success or failure of a child’s education and this statement is true in school and it will also apply if you decide to home school.

Being your child’s teacher means that you need to understand early childhood development and it also means that you need to know when your child is struggling.

Knowing what the hallmark symptoms of inattention hyperactivity and impulsivity or ADHD are – is vitally important because ADHD is the most diagnosed neurological / mental learning disorders in the world today.

So what should you as the home school mom be looking out for:

  • Does your child demand attention by standing up, speaking out of turn or being a bit disruptive during lessons?
  • Does your child struggle to complete tasks in class;
  • Does your child struggle with independent tasks? Like an assignment that they need to complete independently or even a puzzle or art project?
  • Does your child struggle to follow instructions?
  • Does your child struggle to follow “steps” or a sequence when asked to. This will be clear in instances where the older child skips mathematical steps in long division or when solving equations?
  • Does your child show signs of struggling with motor planning specifically writing, cutting, colouring?
  • Does your child have general planning difficulties?
  • Is taking instruction a challenge for your child? Particularly a multiple step instruction?
  • Does is seem like your child is struggling with sequences? “What happens next”
  • Does your child seem to struggle in group activities; or does your child seem to disrupt group activities?
  • Does your child speak/talk out of turn?
  • Does your child seem distracted?
  • Does your child seem to lose focus when talking and it almost seems like they have gone off the topic of conversation?

Attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is characterized by these problems and they usually start developing in early childhood but when these hallmark signs are ignored ADHD may often only get diagnosed in the teenage years. Which in return can lead to huge learning delays or challenges academically, socially and emotionally.

For some reason parents don’t think mental disorder, neurological development delay or development delay. Many will go straight to “angry, frustrated and overwhelmed” because their child is being naughty.

For most young mothers – ADHD is a child that runs around or a child that never sits still. Being busy is natural for young children and hyperactivity is only one aspect of ADHD – oddly many children diagnosed with ADHD are not hyperactive at all and not all children with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder have the same challenges – all cased present completely differently.

If you suspect that your child is having difficulties with impulse control, attention, focus or hyperactivity we suggest that you contact a neurodevelopment paediatrician, occupational therapist or ADHASA – Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Association of South Africa.

Ilse Kilian-Ross

Ilse Kilian-Ross is the owner of Amazing K, a registered ECD and Partial Care Facility in Johannesburg. Amazing K is a private adhd school, autism school and therapy centre for children from age 2 - 6 years where learners receive the best of both the schooling and therapy world. The autism school offers Individualized Education Programs, Speech- and Augmentive Alternative Communication (AAC) therapy as well as a full and adapted Academic Curriculum.