Help Your Kid Stay Focused And Boost Concentration
Kids pay attention only when they want to. Most kids should be able to stay focused for two to five minutes times the year of their age. So, 5 and 6-year-olds should be able to concentrate on a task for between 10 and 30 minutes.
But, attention span is elastic. It varies throughout the day and depends on the situation. For example, children are more likely to focus on something if it’s interesting to them. Read out to help your kid stay focused and boost concentration.
The best way to get your child to pay attention is to be physically close to him when you’re giving directions. Don’t shout requests from the kitchen to the living room. Giving your child clear, concise instructions, also helps. Stand in front of him, make eye contact, be at eye level or touch his shoulder.
Break it Down
If your child thinks a task is too hard for them, they may zone out and stop paying attention. To help them tackle the project at hand, break down the instructions into small steps, which works better than giving long-winded explanations, guilt-tripping, or yelling. Sometimes even illustrating a routine on paper and posting it on the wall can serve as a good visual reminder.
Spice Things Up
Because many children struggle to focus on tasks they don’t want to do – such as the structured, repetitive ones kids encounter when they enter school, you can help make a dull activity more fun by using a little creativity. Make your kids practice writing letters with chalk, shapes letters out of Play-Doh, or even traces a letter’s form with paint on a big easel, to make the experience more engaging.
Studies have shown that exercise can help kids pay attention, and elementary school children who take breaks from class work to be active during the day can concentrate better on their assignments. You can help get that blood flowing by encouraging your kid to use outdoor toys, such as balls and jump ropes and setting aside time each day for family activities such as going on a walk, playing in the park, or taking a bike ride.
Just as with any body part, your child’s attention span must be worked to become stronger, so suggest activities that require concentration-like completing a puzzle or even helping to prepare dinner. You can also help by taking time to point out some of the small and interesting details in your surroundings, which models awareness for your child. Your child’s concentration increases with practice.