How to Improve Child Concentration?
Amidst a world of constant access to screens, children might have trouble concentrating in school and on daily tasks. Children might have more interest in screen time than paying attention in school, which hinders their ability to focus on important school work and
Some ways to improve childhood concentration include limiting or removing their ability to access these devices. Instead of having TVs or iPads on during homework time, tell the child they can access their devices if they complete a certain amount of work.
Paying more attention to screens than learning or school inhibits kids from growing mentally. To avoid this kind of behavior and help the kids move forward, keep reading. This guide explains why children have difficulty focusing and how to help them concentrate.
Table of Contents
What Causes a Child to Lose Focus?
Top factors causing kids to lose focus:
- Poor sleep
- Unhealthy diet
- Family issues
- Health issues
Many factors affect a child to lose concentration and focus. For starters, a poor sleep schedule hinders their ability to concentrate, and an unhealthy diet adds to their inability to complete tasks.
Excessive screen usage prevents children from moving along at a healthy pace. If children watch a lot of screen activity before bedtime, they will have difficulty falling asleep. The best way to ensure a child gets proper rest is by taking away their screen access a few hours before bed. Removing the screens lets their minds wind down naturally.
Other factors disrupting concentration and focus include the quality of home life, family issues, and illnesses. Also, not having a set routine can contribute to a child’s inability to focus.
Best Ways to Improve Child Concentration
Here are some ways to help your child concentrate.
1. Set a Routine
Children succeed when they operate on a structured basis. They need a semblance of stasis in their lives to be able to focus. If a child knows what time he is to eat, play sports, do homework, and go to school, he will be able to understand when he needs to focus. He trains his brain to learn when it is time for learning and when it is time for fun.
2. Sleep Schedule
A sleep schedule goes along with a routine. If a child does not have a set sleep schedule, they might wander around aimlessly while trying to maintain some sort of structure. The sleep schedule helps formulate their circadian rhythm, which gives kids energy throughout the entire day.
For a tired child, their fatigue interferes with their ability to stay present, and they will struggle to focus on simple tasks.
Giving them a set schedule with a dedicated window/ timeframe to fall asleep lets them wind down naturally and adjust their body to ready themselves for a productive day. Children need between nine and thirteen hours of sleep a night to prepare for the next day and refuel and recharge before draining themselves or risking burnout.
3. Balanced Diet
Diet can serve as a frame for most activities in a child’s life. If they eat a lot of processed foods and sugar, they will not be able to focus as much, and they will be more hyperactive than children who stick to healthier options.
Fully balanced meals help kids recharge and refuel their brains and allow them to be more alert and pay more attention to what is happening around them.
If kids eat a lot of sugar, they might have a surge of energy, but they run into a sugar slump once the high recedes. To avoid this, provide them with a healthy diet to maximize their potential while staying healthy.
4. Physical Activity
Children need to give their brains a break from schoolwork and help their focus by participating in physical activity.
Kids are similar to adults because they need a break to be able to recenter themselves. Taking a break from always working lets them have a different view. If kids work all the time without any other activities factored in, they risk childhood burnout.
Let the child choose which activities they’d like to participate in so they can have some sway over how they spend their time.
5. Time Their Activities
Depending on the child, children can succeed with time constraints on activities. If a child wants to take their time on an assignment or they need more time, this might not be the best step for them. But, if your child works well under pressure, you can set a timer and give them a specific timeframe to finish their work.
Dedicating a set amount of time to complete an activity helps a child learn time management and how to maximize their focus. It translates to test-taking and classes in school.
6. Give Them Steps
Breaking down an activity into steps can help a child complete large tasks. They might feel discouraged if they have to do a large task at once, but separating it into small steps and encouraging their success helps them recenter their priorities. You can also set up a reward system for this kind of activity.
Whether the child wants to engage in physical activity, take a snack break, or watch television, they need to be able to separate work from rest and relaxation.
Engaging their brains in different activities throughout the day combined with a routine makes them more apt to focus on the most important parts of each activity. The kid can release a burst of energy in between concentration-related tasks instead of sitting at a table with pent-up energy.
Mindfulness helps adults soothe nerves and anxieties but also helps hone focus and think about one specific thing at a time. Kids can benefit from the use of meditation as well.
They might have a different structure than an adult-centered meditation session, but all you need for meditation is to tell your child to close their eyes, imagine one thing that makes them happy, and focus on their breathing.
Tell them if their mind drifts, to try and recenter themselves and draw their attention back to what makes them happy. When applied to school or homework, this helps the child learn to draw their attention back to their task.
9. Limit Screen Time
Screen time hinders concentration and can lead to boredom. They will ignore the homework or work they’re doing and zone out and into the television or iPad.
Don’t allow any screen time during homework sessions. The child will learn when it is okay to watch TV and when it is time to focus.
By limiting screen time, they stay focused on their homework and find it easier to pay attention in class.
10. Games and Activities
You can mix learning games with physical games to boost concentration. Get the blood flowing and the concentration starting. Figure out what your child favors.
If they like memory games, play some with them. Maybe they do better with a numbered game of hopscotch or a sport where they have to keep score.
If you are preparing for specific exams, TestPrep-Online has a variety of interactive preparation packs for most of the typical national and state-wide exams in the US. These can help your child focus as it feels more like playing a game.
Perhaps play Horse with a basketball with them. This makes them remember the shot you last took and keep a mental tally of their score.
Keep Improving Concentration
Children have a difficult time focusing for myriad reasons. They might spend a lot of time staring at a screen, they could eat an unbalanced diet, or they could have no set routine.
Whatever the reason for the child’s inability to concentrate, there are methods to help improve and increase focus. Test out any of the methods mentioned to measure your child’s ability to increase attention span and focus.
Sarah is an accomplished educator, researcher and author in the field of testing and assessment. She has worked with various educational institutions and organisations to develop innovative evaluation methods and enhance student learning. Sarah has published numerous articles and books on assessment and learning. Her passion for promoting equity and fairness in the education system fuels her commitment to sharing insights and best practices with educators and policymakers around the world.