Summertime & Executive Functioning
Executive functioning is like the conductor of our brains. This conductor gives different parts of our brains cues pertaining to organization, time management, information processing, and other daily tasks. Often people who struggle with executive functioning have great intentions but a hard time taking specific steps to complete certain tasks. When a student is lacking in executive functioning skills, it can result in chaos. What does executive functioning look like as we get into summer mode? Read on to find out.
After nearly three months of virtual learning, students are burnt out and most do not want to do anything. It is important to keep students active! Executive functioning over the summer is not just about academics; it’s about cultivating and practicing brain functions that help students develop life skills which will serve them for the rest of their lives. After they are finished with school, students will still need to know how to wake up on time or execute a task.
What are some ways you can encourage healthy executive functioning skills during the summer? A great example I like to use is swim team. If your student loves to swim, use swim team as a way to reinforce executive functioning skills! Make sure your student packs their bag the night before, wakes up on time, and collects everything they need for practice before leaving the house. Most swim team practices are in the morning, and often, students who struggle with executive functioning have a harder time sleeping and waking up early in the morning. Use swim team as a way to get your student on a consistent sleep schedule!
Other activities that can help students with executive functioning skills are planning an activity or hanging out with friends. Students who have a hard time with executive functioning skills often have a hard time planning, so encouraging your student to plan something fun for themselves is a great way to practice those skills! Students who struggle with executive functioning have the ability to focus, but they need to find something they are interested in order to learn to plan and manage their time.
Most students have summer work (a reading assignment, math packet, etc.) that gets lost in the shuffle. For students who have learning differences or lack executive functioning skills, getting them to complete summer work can be like pulling teeth. Not only are they typically not interested in the content, but the content is often presented in a non-engaging format.
That’s why we created out Summer Programs! Students feel accomplished and at ease when they have something completed and set aside. We have programs ranging from 8 weeks to 1-week blasts! At their core, our programs are fun, engaging, and interactive. Students will be moving, drawing, and collaborating. These programs are academically based but formatted radically different than any typical classroom environment.
About Evelyn Wright
Evelyn Wright is the Director of Wright Academics, a tutoring business created to target kids’ specific needs. Her passion is helping students and families succeed so that they achieve their maximum potential in and out of the classroom.
With over 25 years of experience working with children and their families in public and private schools, as well as in private practice, Evelyn’s focus is understanding the individual’s learning profile, guiding families of children with learning differences and matching students to the tutor or coach that best fits the student. She believes in not only matching educational needs to the right tutor’s skills, but matching a student to the tutor with the right personality.