Child Development Journal
Extracts from this essay...
Observation 1 Child A Setting In the classroom Age of child and year group 8 years old, year 4 Child A was in his form group and the lesson was Home Economics. All the children in the class were planning to make a salad. They were shown a list of food items on the board and had to choose at least 1 from each of the 3 columns. The first column consisted of pasta and rice, the second of tuna, bacon and cheese, and the third of sweet corn, carrots, cucumber and lettuce. The children were then asked to write their choices in their books and then draw pictures of them. Child A started drawing pictures. A female teaching assistant asked child A what he was doing. He said "I'm drawing my salad". She told him he needed to write the names of the food first and then draw them. He did not respond. She then asked him what the drawings were. He said "A strawberry, a banana, some grapes and an apple". She told him he needed to choose some of the food that was listed on the board. He said "But this is what I'm putting in my salad". She rubbed out his drawings and asked him what food he was going to choose. He said "A strawberry, a banana, some grapes and an apple". He started picking pencils out of a pot. She told him he needed to choose some food from the board; he started drawing his fruit again and repeated what the fruit was. She rubbed out the drawings again and told him if he didn't finish the task he would have to stay in at break time. He then chose some food from the board but still drew the pictures of the fruit. Observation 2 Child B Setting In the classroom Age of child and year group 8 years old, year 4 Child B was starting a numeracy lesson; the class had to all sit on the floor and listen to the teacher.
The children came into the classroom and sat down. I explained to them what they were going to do and I handed them all 500g weights to hold. Child A said "This is heavy" and started throwing the weight from one hand to the other. Child B and C copied this. I told them not to throw the weight around because somebody could get hurt. Child B and C did as I asked but child A carried on. I told child A again to stop throwing the weight. He said "but I'm weighing it in my hands." I told him that if he didn't stop then he would have to leave the classroom, he then stopped. I handed Child A the first object and asked him to write on his work sheet if he thought the object weighed more than, less than or about the same as the 500g weight. He held the weight and the object and started walking around the classroom saying "Which ones heavier, which ones heavier". I told him he needed to stay with the group; child B and C started picking up some of the other objects. I then said in a firm voice "Right, I want everyone to put everything back on the table and sit down and be quiet". The 3 children did as I asked and sat down. I explained to them that if they wanted to do the activity they needed to listen to the instructions carefully and do as they were asked; I told them I didn't need them to walk around the classroom or touch the objects when they didn't need to. I then started again, this time child A felt the weight and the object and wrote down his estimate. Child B did the same but shouted out "This one is much heavier!" I reminded him to keep his answer to himself.
These strategies need to be as consistent as possible, both at home and at school. This practitioner had learnt that unity between adults working with children with ADHD is essential and a consistent set of interventions should be applied fairly and routinely. If the activities were to be done again this practitioner would discuss strategies with the other adults also working with the child. This practitioner has learnt that you need to be patient and persistent with children with ADHD. In future activities this practitioner would not have so many objects on display for the children to get hold of (see activity 2), but would keep them out of sight and then introduce them one at a time. In this practitioners setting, the practitioner has learnt that for a child with ADHD to succeed at school, it is critical that they have teachers that can manage a classroom effectively (Goldstein, 1992). The teachers could gain knowledge of ADHD by attending training courses; this would enable teachers to anticipate problems and plan ahead to avoid these problems. Summary This practitioner observed 3 children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. In light of these observations, 2 activities were carried out with the 3 children together. This practitioner has gained a great deal of knowledge about this condition and understands there are many factors that affect children with ADHD, be it hereditary, environmental or medical. This practitioner has had the opportunity to reflect on the children's behaviour in the activities and also his own. The practitioner realises that there is a vast amount that he has yet to learn about ADHD and that with this knowledge comes greater understanding. With the knowledge that this practitioner had gained about this condition he will in future have more of an open mind to disruptive behaviour in the classroom and not just automatically believe a child is choosing to behave in a certain way, which he has done in the past.
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