ADHD in Elementary School:
Giving Tests to ADHD Students
- Every elementary school teacher gives students tests. Here are a few tips that might help with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder “ADHD” students.
- Just a few changes can help your ADHD students a lot!
Testing Strategies for ADHD
- Stress accuracy instead of quantity of test questions. This is really what you want as a teacher anyway.
- Write clear, simple directions. Underline key direction words or vocabulary or have the students underline these words as you read directions with them. Draw borders around parts of the page you want to emphasize.
- Consider modifying the test environment for your student to accurately assess his ability/achievement on subject area and standardized tests. Individual administration in a distraction limited area with frequent breaks will give a more accurate assessment/evaluation than group administration.
- Your ADHD student may tend to want to be “the first one done” on tests. Set reasonable accuracy goals with him and collect the entire group’s work at once to reduce time pressures
- Use large type. Use easy to read fonts.
- Keep page format simple. Include no extraneous pictures or visual destructors that are unrelated to the problems to be solved.
- Provide only one or two activities per page. Have white space on each page. Use dark black print. (Avoid handwritten worksheets or tests.)
- Use buff colored paper rather than white if the room’s lighting creates a glare on white paper.
- Divide the page into sections and use a system to cover sections not currently being used. If possible, use different colors on worksheets or tests for emphasis, particularly on those involving rote, potentially boring work. Have the students use colored pens or pencils.
- Give frequent short quizzes and avoid long tests. Provide practice tests.
- Provide alternative environments with fewer distractions for test taking.
- Using a digital recorder, have the student record test answers and assignments or give the student oral examinations.
- Shorten assignments. If the child can demonstrate adequate concept mastery in 10 or 20 questions/problems, don’t require 30 40 problems.
Douglas Cowan, Psy.D., MFT
Douglas Cowan, Psy.D. MFT
Pastoral Counselor and Professional Therapist in Tehachapi, CA.