Student Success – The Keys to Executive Function

Executive function challenges show up as problems with planning, organizing, flexible thinking, working memory and self-regulating/self-control. These are a key set of mental skills for learning. Children who struggle with executive functioning are not dealing with a learning disability in itself. Instead, these weaknesses are mental skills that can be improved.

The challenges with executive functioning are complex. Each child is unique, but there are proven strategies that help. Think of an executive function as “a CEO in the brain.” These are the skills that set goals, plan and get things done.

A struggle with executive function impacts everyday life throughout life.

Executive Function Oversees

Executive function skills oversee the ability to:

  • Pay Attention
  • Organize, Plan and Prioritize
  • Start Tasks and Stay Focused Until Completion
  • Understand Different Viewpoints
  • Regulate Emotions
  • Self-monitor (Keep Track of What You Do)

Executive skills develop during early childhood and along to the teens years and into the mid-20s. Some kids lag behind, and in the meantime, strategies can help.

What You May Notice

If your child has weak executive functioning at this stage in their development, you may notice:

  • Trouble initiating or the completion of tasks
  • Difficulty with prioritizing
  • Forgetting what they just read or heard
  • Trouble following instructions or a series of steps
  • Panic or anxiety as routines or rules are changed
  • Hesitation switching focus between tasks
  • Getting overly emotional or fixating on things
  • Having trouble organizing thoughts
  • Trouble managing their belongings
  • Inability to manage time

Executive functions develop over time. As such, your child might struggle differently at various ages.

Executive Function Training

The key set of mental skills and processes — goal-setting, organization, prioritization, and time management, and others — help children with school success. This skill-based, instead of subject-based, program teaches your child ‘how to learn’.

Class In Session teaches your child how to be a more successful student, in an effective and efficient way. What we have learned over the years is that better grades do tend to follow these increased executive function skills.

For more information about executive function training for your child, Contact Us or call us at 416-477-2262.

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