Does your preteen seem to have trouble staying focused on tasks, at school or in other situations? Does it ever feel like your child isn’t listening or paying attention? Does your child have trouble focusing on schoolwork, chores or other tasks without getting distracted? While you may feel like your child doesn’t care or just isn’t trying enough, there might actually be another reason your preteen cannot stay focused.
Here are some tips you can use as a parent to help your preteen child stay focused:
• Help your child keep a planner with daily lists of things she needs to do. Get her in the habit of looking at the planner the day before so she is aware of what events and deadlines she has coming up.
• Create a list of responsibilities that are expected at home. Hang this list in a prominent position and go over each item with your preteen/tween so that she understands what is expected of her.
• Limit distractions when she is working on a task. For example, no TV during homework or chores will help her to stay focused on the task at hand. Allow TV time later to be an award for completing the work on time.
• Teach her organization and give her the tools needed to stay focused and organized so that it is much easier to complete tasks.
• Teach her to prioritize and do only one task at a time. A preteen aged child can easily get caught up in all she has to do, making it seem overwhelming and making it difficult to get anything done at all. When she takes it in bite-sized pieces instead, it becomes much easier.
• Lead by example and show your tween how you stay focused and get tasks done, one at a time. Share examples of how you have put these tips to work in your life and what you do to stay organized.
• Trust her with responsibility. The next step to helping your preteen stay focused is to show her that you trust her with responsibility and that you believe she can do it. This will build her confidence and help her to stay focused on the task at hand.
Now that you have these tips for helping your preteen child stay focused, you can be a more involved parent and take the steps needed to ensure your child puts their best foot forward with each and every thing they do.