By Amy Vega - October 17, 2014
I’m working with an 10 year old boy who has been diagnosed with ADHD and executive function issues. He tends to space out when doing written assignments, both at school and at home. I did the LFA and attend over time with him. His scores were mostly in the 80s.
He’s come for 4 sessions since then. I’ve been able to introduce the guide sounds and he’s doing well, with his scores coming down. However, as we’ve done the exercises with more repetitions, I’ve noticed his attention waning a little. So, I tried to do a sequence with him: clap 2x, hit right leg 2x and continue this sequence for 200 reps. He was definitely more focused, but then I noticed that if he focused on the timing, he had a lot of difficulty remembering and focusing on the sequence, and vice versa – if he tried hard to get the sequence right, his timing really deteriorated. I’ve seen this with other kids and I realize it’s normal to not be able to do timing and sequencing well right away.
So, my question is this…should I direct him to focus more on the timing or the sequencing initially? I want to tell him to get the sequence going first, and then we’ll focus on the timing. That’s what I’ve done with other kids, but just want to be sure I’m on the right track.
This may be a problem with active working memory & sustained attention/attention-shifting – there is an excellent on-demand webinar you can access on the IM website that outlines several activities to incorporate with IM training to help these issues.
I would first establish good timing with his hands (his best Task Average), then introduce additional cognitive load to further address higher level attention (if still necessary) and working memory.
Amy Vega, MS, CCC-SLP
Interactive Metronome, Inc
Clinical Education Director
Clinical Advisory Board Director
Clinical Education Administrator