Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder - ADHD and Learning

Have you ever wondered what the heck ADHD has to do with problems with learning?

When was the last time you were in a classroom or training room all day?

I’ll bet that even the most studious of you felt restless at times, looking forward to a break or a change in the pace of the learning.

Ask yourself this question: “What are the top skills you need in order to be successful in the classroom?”.

Some of you may come up with answers such as

  • an enquiring mind

  • the desire to succeed

  • a good pen!

  • organise work easily

  • be able to work independently

Whereas others might say:

  • able to concentrate on tasks

  • capacity to remember facts/excellent memory

  • ability to sit still in class

  • working with others

  • pay attention during lectures

The second set of skills (above) are examples of how a person with ADHD is disadvantaged because these skills are lacking (or reduced) as part of the condition.

ADHD and learning
Imagine, if you can, that your daily attendance at school or college is fraught with anxiety around the problems which ADHD brings to the classroom environment.  This is what happens to many students every day.

Like any condition, symptoms of ADHD will be greater or lesser dependent upon the individual. But the main characteristics include

  • not knowing what task to attend to first

  • unable to stay focused long enough to complete a task

  • excessive physical energy with the desire to move about

  • mental restlessness leading to scattered thoughts

So if you are a teacher and find yourself working with learners with ADHD, read through this previous blog for some tips on managing the behaviour of an individual with ADHD in your class.


If you’d like to learn more about this subject, I run Level 3 accredited home study short-course programmes for teachers and learning support staff.  The training provides an excellent backdrop of knowledge for improving the learning experience for students of any age who have ADHD (or ADHD-like behaviours).   Parents benefit also, it’s a great way for you to understand how to help your child and have meaningful conversations with school.  Just ask!