Hurray!! It’s time to relax! Closed schools, Christmas trees, songs, rest. Nevertheless, the child with ADHD doesn’t show satisfaction and pleasure. He becomes more demanding, impatient and almost completely disorganized. Below we give short instructions which the parents of children with ADHD are advised to follow.
Give guidelines to your child as to what task s/he will do inside and outside the house. For example, have your child decorate his room in an organized way.
Keep a diary (leaving some blank points)
The whole days of the christmas holidays are few and in this case the children with ADHD want to have a sense of structure and organization so as to know what to expect. Fill in your diary details about the trip, the relatives visiting you, the usual recreational activities such as a Ballet-theatre, a whole day-visit to a shoping-center. For children up to 8 years old, you can also write down the hours of playing either by himself or with company.
Of course holidays is for people to rest. Try to have some free time. Your child can do whatever pleases him/her – even nothing. Don’t forget to keep some time at the end of the day so as to spend it with your family: relax together, read and talk.
Loosen your grip without letting your children go astray
School holidays can have some flexibility. Nevertheless, basic rules of the family and a daily routine offer children with ADHD a sense of security. It is really tempting to let children stay up until late but remember that even the slightest sleep deprivation can lead to irritability and restlessness.
Participation in local events, cultural or not
Take advantage of the christmas recreational and educational opportunities that most city councils offer. Find new ideas to make boxes for the presents, or start teaching children how to cook. The participation of an impulsive child to such an activity has socialization and self-esteem benefits.
Don’t forget to add selected activities in your diary. When you plan something and you write it down, the chances of your doing it are more.
Board games and family entertainment are synonyms and during holidays there is more free time so as to play them. Apart from the real entertainment they offer, they also help children concentrate; familiarize themselves with a possible failure and to get used to following rules. Some games help train their focus and memory (try the memory game), while others help with memory and problem solving (such as Stratego) and strategic thought (Hotel).
Clever comics, word games such as crossword puzzles (there is also Scrabble for young players) and of course one of the literature classics, written in capitals for easier reading and understanding, offer children great help.
All children love collecting things. A cold winter is ideal to start collecting materials found in the storeroom. The benefits of putting in groups some old materials for children with ADHD are already known. They promote organized, deductive and generally mathematical thought.
Let your child be a child.
This can be the key to the success of your child’s Christmas holidays. Actually let him/her be natural and spontaneous. We advise you to sometimes let your child do as s/he pleases, provided you will be next to him.
It is vital to repeat that any kind of structure and organization during holidays is important. Most children can be surprisingly creative in finding ways to entertain themselves.
Parents, you don’t have to be permanent entertainment managers. Maybe it is more useful to express your trust in your child’s ability to be creative and inventive. Due to the particular difficulties, the child with ADHD may experiment with himself and go out in the street but this will definitely bring him to a result. Needless to say that parents should always be close to their child for observation, discussion, encouragement and care.