Tuesday, April 19, 2016


Patrícia V. C. Ferreira

When I decided to embrace my PhD studies, there was only one topic that interested me, as a teacher: ADHD, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. It happened that I began to read articles and books mentioning the various positive characteristics of ADHD. Then I focused my studies on the relationship between ADHD and creativity.
It is well known that various specialists and doctors consider ADHD a mental disorder that begins in childhood and can continue through adolescence and adulthood. The use of the word disorder had always bothered me and it sounded too much of a weigh for the various very interesting people I had met with such a syndrome. Of course I realized that these individuals had trouble to focus and pay attention. Some of them were also hyperactive or had trouble being patient. And it is a fact that ADHD can make it hard for a child to do well in school or behave at home or in the community.
But these individuals also:     
  • prefer exploring new ways of doing things,
  • take more risks than the average person,
  • challenge the status quo,
  • want to try new things,
  • delight in solving problems,
  • prefer to research and continuously learn new things over implementing routines."

So I realized there was an undeniable power in that condition, which could be used for the student´s and community´s own good. Finally, there is still a lot of research to be carried out, but meanwhile, I prefer to address ADHD individuals as attention different. They do not have their attention impaired, but actually, they have attention for everything, which makes it harder for them to focus in only one aspect of life or learning. Our challenge as teachers and educators is to help them focus and not lose interest in the learning process.

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