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How to Improve Attention Span in Children

Most of the children struggle with lack of focus. Find out how to improve attention and concentration in children.

If you notice, most of the children lack clarity when it comes to studies. They are unclear what are they studying and why are they studying?

It happens because children often open books out of pressure, as we ask them to do so, without they having enthusiasm to learn something new. But effective attention requires selection of what to consciously commit to memory - they need to pay attention to increase retention. And that's how they do when they are curious to know something - they put effort. But when it comes to study, they lack that zeal.

So how can fix this? Try these tips to help children sharpen their focus.

Tips to increase focus in children

Photo by Johnny McClung on Unsplash

Explain children what they are learning and how to use it:

To increase attention, they need to know what meaning and value it is going to add.

If they find solving math problem repulsive, then explain how it helps in their life, make it relatable to them by giving day-to-day examples.

You can start by giving a big picture of what are they going to learn, this would help in capturing their attention.

Help them practice focusing one thing at a time:

Help them to train, doing one thing at a time. Just keep all resources to solve what is needed and pay complete attention to what they need to do in the moment.

Multitasking is the enemy of focus.

Teach them to focus on what is important:

Focusing on what is important helps to pick the key information, otherwise it’s lost in the myriad of information. Choose most critical information first.

This tip is also helpful during study and exam preparation. Let’s say to answer comprehension questions first, they need to focus on the information needed to answer the questions without getting lost in not so important information.

Ignore what is not needed:

We are hounded by plenty of stimuli. The choice to pay attention or to ignore sets the stage. When children sit to study, they need to learn how to ignore what is not needed at the moment. Learn to withdraw from what is not adding value and focus on what is adding value.

No value addition- ignore

Adding value-pay attention

Remove distractions from the surrounding:

Find out what they are supposed to do at the moment, stay focused on that. Remove all other distractions from the surroundings, mainly digital.

If they are working on a math problem, remove everything that takes away the attention from solving the problem, even other subjects’ books.

Avoid studying with the TV running in the background.

Limit internet activity:

In case of using internet for studies, close multiple tabs. Open the tabs needed, otherwise, keeping focus on the main task gets challenging.

Fix a separate time for research and leisure activity.

During the study period, ensure the rest of unnecessary items are closed.

Believing that they have control and it can be improved:

Remove any limiting belief. If they are unable to solve a problem, it’s because they have not trained to do that. It doesn’t mean they are incapable. Belief is the foundation they need to believe they can do it – then they do it.

Reading increases attention.

Encourage them to read to increase the attention span. Make reading a habit, let them read their favorite books at least 10-15 minutes a day.

Practice deep breathing:

Asking children to practice mindfulness is daunting, instead start with focusing on breathing for few minutes. 2-5 min could do the job. When they walk let them be observant of the surroundings, teach them how to use their senses, smell, touch, feel and be aware. this calms down the hyperactive mind.

Involve them in activities to increase focus:

Involve them in activities that help in increasing focus, like breathing exercise, Legos, puzzles, or just sorting.

Healthy Mind and Body:

Can you focus when you are tried, hungry and thirsty? No, similarly children need calm sleep, peaceful mind, healthy and active body. Exercise provide oxygen to brain, healthy food gives nutrition and energy, and water is a must. So help your children to have a an enriching lifestyle from the beginning, this goes a long way beside increasing focus.

There were times when children use to jump and run around. Sadly, now screen, video games and gadgets have replaced those physical activity. Whereas physical activities not only improves motor skill but also boost concentration.

So, ensure they step out, take up any outdoor or physical activity, walking, running, or playing.

Eat nutritious food

Stay Hydrated:

Drink water to stay hydrated because dehydration negatively impact concentration. A study done at the University of Barcelona, found that mild dehydration-–as little as 2%–can negatively impact the ability to concentrate.

So ensure children drink sufficient water and they sleep well.

Chewing Gum:

Older children can try chewing gum, study done at Cardiff University in the U.K. found that chewing gum can increase alertness and improve attention. Well! children can give a shot to chewing gum while studying.

These are few ways to that help in increasing focus. Leave comment to let us know how do you help your child with their focus.

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Hi there! I’m Muzna, the Founder and Editor of The Bliss Key, I live in San Francisco with my family and by profession I’m an eLearning consultant with more than a decade of experience, and a degree in Business Management and Instructional Design

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