Homeschoolers definitely have to put up with less activity around them during school then regular classrooms in the public school, but they still have distractions, and most do not have formal training in how to tolerate the distractions.
Many parents that I have spoken with have actually pulled their child from school based on this exact problem. The problem being that in a public school classroom, the class sizes have grown by leaps and bounds while the control and discipline has dwindled making for a disaster of a learning environment and the reason why public school education has tanked. At the same time, in the same classrooms, the ADHD diagnosis gets bandied about and the suggestion comes to change the child's placement in the room, instead of looking at helping to build up the child's internal ability to ignore distractions through practice. But this article is not about the tragedy that is the public school classroom. Many homeschoolers experience similar things because no environment is perfectly quiet and non distracting. and most kids are not formally trained in Distraction Tolerance which is my term that I coined many years ago with the training I do with kids.
Most people are not aware that you can train distraction tolerance through practice and make it easier for anyone, child or adult to ignore what is going on around him or her and continue doing their work. Logical to them and maybe unfortunately, most people go the other direction and try to make the environment less distracting, quieter, and more controlled and get upset when something or someone disrupts it. Very unfortunately that is the exact wrong thing to do and can make the child's abilities to ignore weaker.
Somewhat like the idea of allowing a baby to cry a little, learning to self soothe while falling asleep and not having the perfect quiet environment for that sleep, so the child learns to sleep in a non perfect environment and have the ability to self soothe, paying attention and sustaining work during school activities without the perfect quiet environment around you is similar.
For those who homeschool in a small home or one room, this can become a problem and those homeschool parents need to change their thought patterns from trying to keep control and keep quiet, to training the child how to put up with any distraction and keep going. To make that an automatic process for the child. That is the child who will be ultimately successful. To find out how to do this or to talk more, click here and we'll talk.
Dr. Sherri's Blog
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