Executive Function

Difficulties with Executive Function (EF) creates challenges with learning. This does not mean a child is lazy or unintelligent. Children who struggle with EF may be just as smart and hardworking as other children. It can affect children in different ways. Children may have difficulties in only one or two areas or all of them. The challenges the child faces often presents with symptoms like ADHD. That’s because children with ADHD have problems with EF.

Children with Executive Function difficulties struggling may:

  • Have trouble starting and completing tasks
  • Have difficulty prioritising tasks
  • Forget what they’ve just heard or read
  • Have trouble following directions or a sequence of steps
  • Panic when rules or routines change
  • Have trouble switching focus from one task to another
  • Get overly emotional and fixate on things
  • Have trouble keeping track of their belongings
  • Not be able to manage their time

 

Examples of potential challenges faced by primary school children with weak Executive Function skills:

  • Starts a task, gets distracted, and never finishes it
  • Often mixes up school assignments and brings home the wrong books
  • Has a messy desk and backpack
  • Wants to have friends come over, but never sets it up
  • Seems to focus on the least important point in a discussion

 

Our Executive Function Program aims to guide children to work on these sets of skills individually and integrate them. The child will learn to select which Executive Function Skill to use to achieve goals or problem solve, and regulate their physical and emotional behaviour at the same time.