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    • Join Date: Aug 2003
    • Posts: 70

    Improving abysmal concentration

    Any help with improving a child's concentration skills anyone?

    I have 3 or 4 students in a class of 30 who have zero concentration. It was suggested that sport at the weekend would help in this regard as they will have to focus and concentrate. Wondered what any of you would suggest?
    Parents are highly motivated and will listen to my recommendations to help them improve.

    Many thanks


    • Join Date: Feb 2007
    • Posts: 52

    Re: Improving abysmal concentration

    Sixteen for zero!!!

    Intrinsic and extrinsic motivation! If the other students are concentrating, and thereby improving, you are in a very difficult spot: you could work yourself to death by assuming that the problem is yours. The point here is how much energy you are prepared to invest in this group. You could completely restructure the classes, providing an entire ‘submodality’ that provides hyper-interesting and broken-down-into-smaller-chunks versions of the work that the rest of the students are doing – see Working Yourself to Death above. You could put them at the front of the class and ask them questions, as you go, about the work – old-fashioned, but effective.
    The fact that the parents are genuinely interested seems to be your best point of leverage. I would speak individually to the students first, and then as a group. Explain to them that the choice is theirs: you have a responsibility to their parents and your employer to teach them. If they won’t respond to this approach, that they have a chance to right the problem themselves, then you could arrange a meeting with both the parents and the kids, state the problem, list the solutions (a separate, paid, class for the group? extra homework?), and see what happens.

    In closing, if you are in this profession for the long haul, understand that this is the nature of the beast: some students don’t care – and sorry, ‘lack of concentration’ is not caring -- and you can hold your breath until you go blue in the face and it won’t help. Sometimes, sadly, sadly, sadly, it’s a matter of the greatest good for the greatest number.
    Last edited by mark in perth; 14-Mar-2007 at 06:55.

    • Join Date: Mar 2007
    • Posts: 1

    Re: Improving abysmal concentration

    I'm new to this site, British, living in Spain, teaching at an International School. I spent more years that I care to recall teaching in comprehensive schools in Liverpool.

    Concentration - or the lack of it - has been an on-going problem for the past 20 years. One of the possible causative factors that is coming to the fore is diet. Many children have poor eating habits: a never-ending diet of fast food chemically-enhanced, salty snacks and sugar. Research is beginning to show actual changes in the brain. So, alter the child's diet.


    • Join Date: Aug 2003
    • Posts: 70

    Re: Improving abysmal concentration

    Thanks for the replies.

    I am aware of the diet issues and have already mentioned it to a number of the hyper and problem children's parents. They simply don't take it seriously even though looking at the food they eat at school it's obvious that it is a major factor. Sugar loaded drinks all day every day and sweet food snacks to go with it!

    I will speak to the parents of those who are most problematic before the new term starts and mention it again!

    I know that a few children (who attend local international school) and have similar problems with concentration are doing sports at the weekend in a bid to improve focus and concentration in a hope it rubs off in class, but again this is parental issue I don't have control of.

    Do you think this is a possible remedy?


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