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What is ADHD?

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a condition that affects people’s behaviour. People with ADHD can seem restless, may have trouble concentrating and may act on impulse. Children with ADHD may find it hard to follow instructions, organise themselves for activities and struggle to focus and complete tasks

Might my child have ADHD?

Many children go through phases when they are restless or inattentive, have trouble behaving or focusing. This is often completely normal and does not usually mean they have ADHD. Children with ADHD do not just grow out of these behaviours. The symptoms continue, can be severe and can cause them difficulties at home, school and with friends. If you are concerned that your child’s behaviour may be different from most children their age, you should discuss your concerns with your child’s class teacher or the SENCo.

Symptoms of ADHD

People who have ADHD may display symptoms of inattentiveness and hyperactivity. Sometimes people only have trouble with inattentiveness. This is sometimes known as attention deficit disorder (ADD).

These symptoms occur in more than one situation, such as at home and at school.

Inattentiveness (difficulty concentrating and focusing)

  • Having a short attention span and being easily distracted
  • Making careless mistakes – for example, in schoolwork
  • Appearing forgetful and losing things
  • Being unable to stick to tasks that are tedious or time-consuming
  • Appearing to be unable to carry out instructions
  • Constantly changing activity or task
  • Having difficulty organising tasks

Hyperactivity and Impulsiveness

  • Being unable to sit still, especially in calm or quiet surroundings
  • Constantly fidgeting
  • Excessive physical movement
  • Excessive talking
  • Being unable to wait their turn
  • Acting without thinking
  • Interrupting conversations
  • Little or no sense of danger

What will school do to support my child?

If the SENCo and class teacher share your concerns, they may refer your child to CAMHS (Children and Adolescent Mental Health Services) for assessment. Some children with ADHD may be offered therapy or medication to help them manage their symptoms. In class, teachers will use a number of strategies to support your child. These may include careful consideration of the position of the child away from distractions; visual reminders of rules; use of fidget toys; regular movement breaks; breaking down tasks into smaller chunks; positive reinforcement of behaviour or having a safe space for the child to calm down.

For further information about ADHD or about how Highgate Primary support pupils with ADHD, please don’t hesitate to get in touch: