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The Gow School logo A coed college-prep boarding and day school for students, grades 6-12, with dyslexia and similar language-based learning disabilities.


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Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

Characteristics of Students with ADHD in the Classroom

“A persistent pattern of inattention and/or hyperactivity-impulsivity that interferes with functioning or development.”2

  • Inattention manifests behaviorally in ADHD as wandering off task, lacking persistence, having difficulty sustaining focus, and being disorganized and is not due to defiance or lack of comprehension.
  • Hyperactivity refers to excessive motor activity when it is not appropriate, or excessive fidgeting, tapping, or talkativeness.
  • Impulsivity refers to hasty actions that occur in the moment without forethought and that have high potential for harm to the individual.

How Gow Levels the Playing Field for Students with ADHD

The nature of the school’s schedule is structured in a way that helps students with ADHD stay on task without feeling singled out. Even students free time is structured free time. Gow faculty understand the best way to teach students struggling with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, is to get them moving. Students classes are purposely spread out around campus to burn off the energy of switching periods. Teachers often will take their students outside of the classroom as a change of pace. Gow teachers have found that students struggling with ADHD do better with projects-based curriculum because it gets them moving around. Teachers also provide things in the classroom to help with student’s fidgety nature, including play-doh, rubber bands, paper clips, and Velcro.

American Psychiatric Association (2013). Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders: DSM-5 (5th ed.). Arlington, VA: American Psychiatric Association. p. 61