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Helping Children with ADHD: Moving from Prompt Dependence to Independence aka "You stop acting as your child's executive functioning."


Children with ADHD often require additional support in managing daily tasks and activities. As caregivers, it's natural to want to help them succeed, but empowering them to develop their executive function skills is essential.

Understanding Prompt Dependence
When children with ADHD become prompt dependent, they rely on adults to act as their executive functioning. This hinders their ability to use their own cognitive skills and can lead to a lack of independence in managing tasks effectively.

Building Foundational Executive Function Skills
To help children with ADHD transition from prompt dependence to independence, it's crucial to focus on developing foundational executive function skills. This includes improving nonverbal working memory (future thinking skills) and internal dialogue (brain voice), often delayed in children with ADHD.

Shifting Strategies
Instead of prompting, caregivers can combine strategies taught in Executive Function Crash Course with declarative language (also taught in the EF Crash Course) to prompt children to think and use their internal dialogue effectively. By shifting away from traditional strategies like making lists and using timers, which may not address core executive function skills, caregivers can help children develop long-term independence.

The Importance of Independence
It's important for children with ADHD to learn to use their own executive functioning skills, especially as they grow older and face more challenges independently, such as transitioning to college. By starting early and focusing on skill-building, caregivers can help set their children up for success in managing their lives independently.

Empowering children with ADHD to develop their executive function skills is a gradual process that can lead to long-term independence and success. Caregivers can effectively support their children's growth and development by understanding prompt dependence, building foundational skills, and shifting strategies to foster independence. Learn strategies to shift from prompt dependence towards independence, help your child learn to sense the passage of time, get off video games/screens without a fight, and more in Executive Function Crash Course for Parents, which is included in the ADHD Dude Membership Site

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