Mom-to-Mom Support/I am feeling challenged to homeschool my 6-year-old who has been diagnosed with ADHD

I am feeling challenged to homeschool my 6-year-old who has been diagnosed with ADHD


I have prayed and have come to the decision of homeschooling my 6-year-old along with my 11-year-old. I am also very blessed to have my husband’s full support. However, my 6-year-old was “diagnosed” with ADHD last year in Kindergarten. I am feeling a bit challenged on how to handle his learning style or even how to find out what his learning style is. My prayer is to do God’s will in my children’s lives. I guess I am just looking for some friendly, but practical advice on how to even begin with my 6-year-old considering his learning capabilities. Thanks for your support.

Dear Parent,

When God blesses us with children, He is willing to provide us with the grace we need to rear them. Part of that grace will certainly be your husband’s full support.

ADHD children benefit from one-on-one tutoring. The group needs of a functioning classroom can aggravate ADHD, but you won’t have those group needs at home. You can focus on what your six-year-old son needs. One of the best methods of working with an ADHD child is to go slowly, at his pace. Don’t worry about grade levels. Keep him working on academics for about an hour to an hour and a half a day without overwhelming him. Let him take a break—you don’t have to work straight through but can break up the school day into two or more sessions. If he becomes frustrated, slow down or stop. Review frequently.

Hands on and visual activities will help him focus. Math manipulatives, such as counters, Cuisenaire rods, and number lines, are great for focusing a child’s attention. If he wants to do his math while standing up, that’s okay. If he wants to chant and clap while spelling, let him. He doesn’t have to be intensely focused, and don’t expect him to be able to focus for long periods. Just keep working with him steadily.

You indicate that you are not sure how to determine his learning style. I would not worry about that at this time, but incorporate hands-on, visual, and auditory experiences. You don’t want to overload his system, but use each of the three main methods of learning to teach him and for later review work. For example, use counters with math problems. Then encourage him to talk through the problem aloud as he writes the numerals. You might review by using a different math manipulative other than counters. You might ask him to draw the problem for a second review. If you notice that one method seems to work better for him, I would tend to use that method more often, but don’t neglect the other methods in the primary grades. They are all useful, and some work better with certain subjects than with others.

Establish a set routine for each day. Knowing that he has to work for fifteen to twenty minutes on reading at a certain time can help him remain focused. Use short explanations, and break large tasks down into smaller tasks. For example, instead of asking your son to clean his room, ask him to pick up his clothes. Then ask him to make the bed, and so on.

This website can provide helpful information as you begin your homeschooling journey. Some days will be better than others, and you will need patience, but the rewards for your child will be worth your steady and gentle efforts to guide him.

May God smile upon you and your family,
Sandra Garant

About Sandra Garant

Sandra Garant is a veteran homeschooling mom, certified teacher, writer, attorney, and administrative law judge. She taught her three children at home until they were ready for college. She tutored students in writing for many years and is the author of Language of God, Level F and Language of God, Level G.