In Đán’s interim progress report for the third quarter, his teachers write: “Thank you for your support with Dan. He has shown great improvement with his class participation and completing his assignments on time.”
In the past few weeks, I worked with him closely. At first, I was so frustrated because he seemed clueless. He didn’t know what went on during class. Tuesday last week for instance, I had to take care of an issue at work that required me to be focused. I asked him to pay attention to his teacher. When I saw him idling, I asked him what he was supposed to do and he didn’t have a clue. I yelled at him then I felt awful afterward. I needed to be more patience.
The next day I kept reminding him to sit up and to pay attention. I also made him raise his hand to participate in class discussion. He didn’t want to speak up because he was afraid to give the wrong answer. He wanted to check with me first before he would raise his hand. He felt more confidence when he had the right answer. He is now participating a bit more and his teachers have recognized his efforts.
He wrote another poem yesterday in language art. He even shared with his classmates. He read out loud:
I love to make sushi
For me and my family
We enjoy eating them together
The memory will last forever
His teacher danced in her chair. She was so happy with the progress he is making. Today, she taught them alliterations. For class assignment, he needed to come up with a phrase that had alliteration based on his name. He wrote, “Dan digs Dunkin’ Donuts.” His teacher had a good laugh at that one.
From what I had observed, he was not clueless. He was just bored and was not paying attention. To get him engaged, I advised him to make his assignments about the things he enjoyed. Since he is passionate about cooking, he incorporated food into his assignments.
Staying focused is definitely a challenge for him. He didn’t do well on his tests or assessments because he tried to answer without reading the questions. I often had to remind him to slow down and read the question carefully before selecting an answer.
I am glad that he has shown some improvements, but he will need help with his ADHD. I am here for him now, but I can’t do this in the long term. Once he goes back to the classroom environment or I go back to work in my office, I won’t be able to be with him. Now that we know the issues he is facing, we can get him the help he needs.