Before you can practice and maintain executive functioning skills, you must need to know what the executive functioning goals are that you wish to work on. Is it working memory, long-term memory, short-term memory, processing speed, focus, initiate, plan, follow through, etc? Once you know, set a goal with your child. Keep that goal where everyone can see and review it. Work on only two or three goals until they are mastered. For example: Currently, your child may need three reminders and at least three minutes to initiate when given a task; however, by the end of August he/she will respond to a task request with less than one minute to initiate and one of fewer reminders. It is important to develop the goals based on real life scenarios rather than something artificial.
At Home Programs
If you are looking to improve your child’s executive functioning at home, they would benefit from Cogmed, which is 5 days a week and them 2 times a week for 15 minutes for a year. Dr. Carol went through Cogmed herself and found it to be very helpful. Check out www.Cogmed.com for more information.
How to Cue Utilization of Skills Learned
If you notice that your child knows how to pay attention, talk to him/her about how it feels to pay attention and not think about anything else. See how long he/she can sustain that attention. One theory is that once you have improved any of the executive functions, they will maintain or continue to improve because you use them every day. Therefore, cognitive challenges every day will help your child “practice” those executive functions.
To answer any of your questions regarding Summer tips, or for more information, please call 724.940.1090 or email Success@www.totallearningcenter.com