Welcome to the 5th Issue of the Every Day with ADHD Newsletter

Issue 5 October 2010
Welcome to the 5th Issue of the
Every Day with ADHD
Inside this Issue:
A word from Kerry
New Support
Hello everyone
Top 20 Tips
Wow! This year has flown. I seem to say that every year?!?
In Addition
Those of you who have been following our National Tour this year know how busy we have
A word from
Let us know what 3
you think
A Positive -
Thank you to everyone who attended the workshops whether in Queensland, NSW, Victoria or
Tasmania. It was lovely to meet so many.
Term 4 seems like a good time to reflect on the past year as well as prepare for the upcoming
Remember the
Thom Hartmann
From the Book
In this newsletter I have tried to sum up the essence of Every Day with ADHD’s beliefs about
how wonderful our children can be and how to bring out the best in them.
Please remember to keep checking our website as it is being added to all the time.
School Holiday
Feedback What people
have said
2010 Workshop
2011 Workshops
Interested in a
Workshop or
Training in your
Enjoy the reminders and the rest of the year.
Hope to hear from you next year.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year
Kerry Cooney & Steve Oldham
New Support
ADHD Social Network and Chat Room
We invite you to join our Social Network ADHD Support - Every Day with ADHD on Grouply, it is
free, and connect with others on http://everydaywithadhd.grouply.com. Share your questions,
answers and experiences with others.
Over the last few months a number of additional Australian Social Networks have been
established. Please feel free to visit them especially those in your area.
New South Wales
Coffs Harbour - Emma Rhoades's Page - http://kidswithadhd.ning.com
South Australia
Mount Gambier - ADHD In The Mount - ADHD uncovered - http://adhdinthemount.grouply.com
Hobart - ADHD Australia - Positive Support, Positive Futures - http://adhdaustralia.ning.com
Information Sheets
Additional information is continually being added to our website information sheets page.
Check it out.
Issue 5
Page 2
Top 20 Tips
The Top Tip
Find your child‘s talents, skills and strengths. Harness these and encourage them to follow
their passion/s.
Stop apologising – You did not cause or create your child‘s behaviour. Accept that you
have a child who is different and therefore the management of that child will need to
be different. Others do not need to understand – you do.
The ratio of positive to negative comments that the average person requires for a
healthy self esteem is three to one. Make this your goal for your child.
Set limits – If you are not absolutely certain about the behaviours you want in your home,
you will never achieve them. Your child needs to know what is expected of him/her. All
rules that are going to be reinforced must be clearly explained ahead of time.
Confrontation – Where possible avoid arguments. Ignore minor transgressions and turn
your back on the child when he/she displays inappropriate behaviour.
Discipline – Use disciplinary actions sparingly. Children with ADHD do not learn well when
disciplined harshly and regularly. Rewarding good behaviour needs to be done
immediately an action is undertaken, not at the end of a day.
Anger – Allow the child to vent his/her frustration. Stand and listen empathetically. Teach
required anger management strategies when the child is not angry.
Listen – Practice listening without judgment more than talking, correcting and giving
Organisation – You need to become organised because, neurologically, your child
cannot be. Use lists and routines to help in this process.
Activities – Plan for boredom. To remain occupied and challenged your child needs
multiple activities all day, every day.
Calming – When your child is aggravated allow for quiet time or direct him/her towards
water to either play, have a shower or a bath.
Instructions need to be clear, simple and in plain language all the time. No more than
one or two tasks at a time.
School – Do not feel inadequate when approaching the child‘s school. You know your
child better than any teacher does. Ask the teacher which are the most troublesome
times for your child and then you may be able to suggest possible strategies.
Homework – I prefer no homework except reading in primary school. If necessary ten
minutes a night, no more (and use a timer).
Often highly
people are
driven and
follow their
Tutor – If you believe your child would benefit from engaging a tutor then homework
tasks should be used as the subject matter.
After school – Your child has built up emotion from the school day. The requirements are
food, drink and at least half an hour of personal time. Keep others away.
Choice – Too many choices cause frustration and anxiety. Give only two and don‘t worry
which one is chosen.
This does not
mean they get
along well with
Mornings – Use visual cues more than verbal ones. Make a list or chart that the child can
use to keep on track. Timers can be used to remind the child.
Bedtime – Start the bedtime routine well before it is time for bed. In your routine include
dinner time, bath time, some TV and a story in bed before lights out. Try not to stray from
your plan.
Eating – Children with ADHD are happier as grazers. Leave a plate of food that they can
access when they want to. Avoid nagging about their food intake.
Did you know?
Famous people
do not
cope with
Issue 5
Page 3
In Addition
Outbursts – These are usually caused by heightened frustration and anxiety. Continued
frustration leads to anger, increased anger leads to aggression in all of its forms, including
outbursts. When an outburst occurs it is the wrong time to deal with any issue. Walk away while
making sure that others around the child with ADHD are safe.
Solution – Decrease frustration and anxiety.
We know
How? By implementing strategies for each of the characteristics that cause
concern for your child, one by one.
Not all children
are the same
Don’t we
Make a list of the issues that are causing the most concern.
Ensure that you have a complete understanding of each issue.
Decide what strategies you will put in place for each issue.
Work through the issues one at a time.
Let us know what you think
If you:
Have been to one of our workshops
Are a regular Newsletter Reader
Used our Information Page
Read our book, or
Joined our Social Network
We would welcome your feedback both positive and negative and would be pleased to hear
from you through our website Comments Page or by direct email to
[email protected]
A Positive
Remember the strengths
Many children with ADHD have an above average IQ and have an innate ability to think
laterally. If ever there is a problem to be solved those with ADHD will solve it as they are
extremely creative.
They also:
Have the ability to see things as they could be and do not understand why it is not done
Have a huge amount of energy that can translate into increased work output.
Are committed and loyal individuals.
Are extremely sensitive and generally empathise with weaker children or animals.
Are assertive with an unwavering character.
Are risk takers and decision makers.
Have the ability to be flexible and adaptable within their environment.
There are many famous people who are said to have/had ADHD or a learning disability.
In researching, there is one common theme I noted for all the successful people cited, namely,
regardless of the difficulties they experienced in childhood they invariably followed their
They include Richard Branson, Bill Gates, Angry Anderson, Mel Gibson, Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom
Cruise, Sylvester Stallone, Albert Einstein, Thomas Edison and many more.
Here is what Thom Hartmann has to say on your child‘s strengths
Issue 5
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Thom Hartmann - the author of 8 books on ADHD
No studies I know of have looked for ADHD children who are functioning well in school, or ADHD
adults who are functioning well in life (although we all know of examples of the latter, from
actors to entrepreneurs to inventors to artists). Because publications of the psychology and
psychiatry industries concern themselves only with pathology (there is no listing for "normal" in
the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of The American Psychiatric Association, for example), it
should not surprise us that they find it. Nor should it surprise us that they wouldn‘t bother to look
for or at those who are not "failing" in society, and thus not potential customers.
Thus, people like multi-millionaire entrepreneur Wilson Harrell (former publisher of Inc. Magazine
and founder of the Formula 409 Company) are completely overlooked. Harrell, in his book For
Entrepreneurs Only, devotes two chapters to his own ADHD and his belief that ADHD is
"essential" for the success of an entrepreneur. Similarly, those who don‘t care to look for ADHD
among the ranks of the successful would overlook Harvard psychiatrists and professors of
psychiatry, Drs. John Ratey and Edward Hallowell, authors of the best-selling book Driven to
Distraction, in which they state explicitly that they each "have ADD."
In fact, several studies have provided us with hints that ADHD may be useful somehow,
somewhere, sometime. One of the most interesting was a Washington University study in which
ADHD persons were tested against "normal" controls for their ability to handle emergencies:
what the study‘s authors called "urgent tasks." The abstract reads:
Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) has been proposed to represent adaptive
responding to highly urgent situations in primitive hunting. In the present study, 31 adults with self
-reported ADHD were compared with 33 normal adults on a newly developed, 10-item
measure of urgent task involvement. The internal consistency of the scale was suitable, and the
group with ADHD scored significantly higher than the control group, as predicted.
While this was the first study to demonstrate that people with ADHD had some advantage in
some circumstances over others, many previous studies offer tantalizing glimpses which the
researchers chose not to pursue. For example, one study found that while "normal" children‘s
ability to read or perform tasks requiring vigilance deteriorated when they were "distracted" by
high levels of external stimulation, ADHD children‘s scores actually improved. Another study
found that boys with ADHD calmed down when they were in highly stimulating environments,
whereas "normal" children would crash-and-burn under such circumstances. An article in The
Journal of Creative Behavior by University of Georgia‘s Bonnie Cramond asks the question in its
abstract: "There are so many similarities in the behavioral descriptions of creativity and ADHD
that one is left to wonder, could these be overlapping phenomena?" The article goes on to
suggest that a thorough search of the literature in both fields would imply the answer is yes. It
concludes: ―Perhaps individuals who have trouble with verbal learning but have a very
imaginative, visual manner of thinking will be considered at the forefront of innovation in our
society rather than as problem learners. Taken together, the results of these studies and others
like them are indicative of a childhood syndrome characterized by hyperactivity and high
intelligence, in which personality variables, modes of cognitive representation and creativity
are intimately bound.‖
Instead of trying to rid ourselves of ADHD children, our society would be far better served were
we to ask, "How can we acknowledge and honor the individuality of each of our children, and
provide settings in which each can develop into a happy, effective, and caring adult?" Were
we to provide education that acknowledges the differences in the way people learn, we might
soon be tapping a source of creativity that could be useful to our entire society. But to do that
would require that we open ourselves up to the possibility that the kinds of skills we reward
today may not be the only worthwhile skills—and that would open the question of whether the
way we organized our society itself was the only or best way to create a society.
When such questions are on the agenda, ADHD children look much more like a symptom of a
society which itself may be severely dysfunctional. If we cannot find the tools to reorganize our
world immediately, we at least ought to do what we can to prevent educational and eugenic
philosophies that seek to obliterate the beings of those who do not fit into this distorted reality.
Originally published in Tikkun Magazine Copyright © 1999, 2000, 2001 by Thom Hartmann, all
rights reserved.
Issue 5
Page 5
From The Book
Relationships are not formed without effort. This is another social truth that children with ADHD,
and many others, need to learn. But until they do we can help them along the way.
Make time for your child to invite a person home. One to one is usually better for children
with ADHD - not too much stress.
Plan the time very carefully. For example, have some special food and drink to offer, play
the play station or basketball for a time at home then take the children swimming; more
food then drop the visitor home. This does not allow much time for boredom or anxiety.
Less is more in this situation. In other words, don‘t plan for an entire day of company but
rather a few hours. As friendship grows, so can the time.
If your child or teen shows skill in any area encourage this activity. The feeling of being good at
something will make a huge difference to the child‘s social scene particularly when he
becomes a teenager.
School Holiday Ideas
Plan ahead of time. You probably know when the trouble spots are likely to occur so get
in first.
Keep some small toys or activity based items in the wardrobe. Bring these out when real
boredom is at smouldering point.
If there is an indoor swimming centre near you, use this whenever necessary and on the
spur of the moment as a calming and physical activity. Start putting money aside now.
Decide on any outings ahead of time and make these known about one week before.
Get some old tyres for a back yard activity.
Have a spade and some seeds or small plants ready for gardening.
Invite one child over for a visit and thoroughly plan the time by 15 minute slots if necessary.
This helps ensure less anxiety and boredom.
Start to collect boxes of all sizes.
Build on your child‘s interests and skills. A sports clinic, extra music lessons, a local holiday
If there are activities which suit your child through the local vacation care enrol in these.
Avoid late bedtimes because it is holidays. This will only add to fatigue and lower
frustration tolerance.
Avoid too many holiday food treats as this will increase irritability.
Go bush walking or cycling. Many localities have tracks.
Take the time to think about what will keep your child and family occupied and content
over the holiday break.
Issue 5
Page 6
Whether the move is from home to child care; childcare to kinder; kinder to primary school; or
primary school to secondary school, there are ways to alleviate some angst.
If possible, visit the grounds of the new premise on weekends to ride a bike, play on a
basketball court or simply to walk through. This will build familiarisation with the environment.
Attend special performances at the venue, for example, concerts, carols or sports.
Arrange with the principal, vice principal or welfare coordinator to visit the premise during in
class times first; and then during a recess or lunch break.
Talk about what is to be done at these break times and give alternatives.
If possible, introduce your child to their new teacher and visit that teacher a couple of time.
Arrange to visit the classroom to be used next year talking about the desks, lockers, bag areas
Arrange for a school timetable for your child so the visual concept can be frame worked.
Talk about and practice colour coding of subjects and books.
Find out the school rules and discuss these over time.
If a combination lock is to be used for a locker, buy ahead of time and allow child to practice.
If a key lock is to be used, have some extras cut and left at the office and at home.
Set up a ‗go to‘ person for your child in case of any problems. (This needs to be a guilt free
Establish homework expectations from the very beginning:
How much is expected taking into account ADHD and/or a learning disability
Alternatives to weaknesses eg Dictaphone and typing it up instead of hand writing
Organise a method of the child or you receiving homework set each day.
Feedback - What people have said
From Our Social Network
Hi ..,
Thanks for the reply. This website is great. I wish I had found it earlier. I have read most
comments and it is so good to hear others go through similar things and know that they
I have just stumbled across this site, and wished I had known about it before. It is refreshing to
read the posts from Aussies, as all other sites I have found are US based.
Hi everyone!
I found out about this group through my school's P&C. I eagerly read all your forum's and am
beginning to wonder if my child actually has ADHD.
From our Enquiry Page
I have no enquiry but some advice. I live with two people in my family with ADHD. I see it not as
a problem but as a gift. They are both highly creative people and very successful in their fields.
The youngest is medicated and since being so has done nothing but excelled in his chosen
field - school could not an did not want to deal with his situation and as a teacher myself this
was disappointing however he will pass his class mates in work experience and TAFE quals by
leaving in yr 10.
He is an extremely mature 18 yr old and the best thing for him has been medication.
People need to get over the stigma associated with the term ADHD, the medication and the
supposed family shame - no on in this world is perfect.
Issue 5
Page 7
Pathways to Success Workshops
Term 4 2010
Workshop Type
Mon, Oct 11th 7:00-9:00pm
General Workshop
Tue, Oct 12th 7:00-9:00pm
General Workshop
Wed, Oct 13th 7:00-9:00pm
General Workshop
Thu, Oct 14th 7:00-9:00pm
General Workshop
Mon, Oct 18th 7:00-9:00pm
General Workshop
Tue, Oct 19th 7:00-9:00pm
General Workshop
Thu, Oct 21st 7:00-9:00pm
General Workshop
Mon, Oct 25th 7:00-9:00pm
General Workshop
Tue, Oct 26th 7:00-9:00pm
General Workshop
Thu, Oct 28th 7:00-9:00pm
General Workshop
Mon, Nov 1st 5:30-9:30pm
Practical Behaviour Management
Wed, Nov 3rd 5:30-9:30pm
Practical Behaviour Management
Thu, Nov 4th & Fri, Nov 5th 9:00am4:00pm
Train the Trainer in ADHD Facilitation
Mon, Nov 8th 5:30-9:30pm
Practical Behaviour Management
Wed, Nov 10th & Thu, Nov 11th
Train the Trainer in ADHD Facilitation
Mon, Nov 15th 5:30-9:30pm
Practical Behaviour Management
Wed, Nov 17th 5:30-9:30pm
Practical Behaviour Management
Thu, Nov 18th & Fri, Nov 19th 9:00am4:00pm
Train the Trainer in ADHD Facilitation
Mon, Nov 22nd 5:30-9:30pm
Practical Behaviour Management
Wed, Nov 24th & Thu, Nov 25th
Train the Trainer in ADHD Facilitation
Mon, Nov 29th, 7:00-9:00pm
General Workshop
Tue, Nov 30th, 12:30-4:30pm
Practical Behaviour Management
Thu, Dec 2nd & Fri, Dec 3rd, 9:00am4:00pm
Train the Trainer in ADHD Facilitation
Please keep and eye on our Workshop Dates Page for dates as they are scheduled or register
to receive newsletters and workshop updates via our website www.everydaywithadhd.com.au
or go straight to our sign up page
Issue 5
Page 8
2011 Workshops
The following Pathways to Success Workshops will be delivered in 2011.
Please keep and eye on our Workshop Dates Page for dates as they are scheduled or register
to receive newsletters and workshop updates via our website www.everydaywithadhd.com.au
or go straight to our sign up page
General Workshop
2 Hours
This workshop is designed to provide participants with a greater understanding of the issues that
impact the child‘s behaviour and learning. It offers practical suggestions and starting points for
managing the challenging child.
Questions are answered throughout the workshop and relevant examples given.
Read outline on line
To enquire Click here or email us at [email protected]
Practical Behaviour Management Workshop
4 Hours
Pre requisite: Attendance at a 2 hour General Workshop.
This workshop builds on the understandings and knowledge gained from the general workshop.
It is a hands on, interactive learning session where behaviours and strategies are worked
through to a personalised action plan. Each participant has the opportunity to take away a
working behaviour management program that can be implemented immediately.
Read outline on line
To enquire Click here or email us at [email protected]
Train the Trainer
2 Day workshop
Pre requisite: Attendance at a 2 hour General Workshop.
This workshop is designed for professionals who are interested in conducting parenting courses
for parents of children with ADHD, Specific Learning Disabilities or Challenging behaviours. It is
important to recognise that general parenting strategies rarely have a behaviour changing
impact on these children and often leave the parents feeling all the more inadequate. The
course is based on strategies proven to be the catalyst for life changing results for hundreds of
Read outline on line
Interested in a Workshop or Training in your Area
To enquire Click here or email us at [email protected]
If you have an enquire about:
 Train the Trainer Course for your staff
Professional Development Sessions
Specific training requirements
Host one of our workshops
Please complete our Expression Of Interest Form
Every Day with ADHD
P O Box 7789
Cairns Qld 4870 Australia
[email protected]
Social Networking: ADHD Support - Every Day with ADHD http://everydaywithadhd.grouply.com
YouTube Channel: www.youtube.com/user/everydaywithadhd