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Behavior: disabilities impact development

Date: February 25th, 2016
By: Polly Bath

Polly Bath: “At this age, I shouldn’t have to tell you.” I’m sure we’ve all said this to a student. But, what age is that? Think about this, developmental age verses chronological age.

Any child who has a true diagnosis, let’s pick on ADHD because it’s the most pickable, I guess. It’s out there in the media every single day. A true diagnosis of ADHD, not the one you buy from some doctor at Shaws or the supermarket because you want to get services, or you want accommodations because we can buy a diagnosis of ADHD all day long. The real chemical imbalance.

Research tells us if you truly have the chemical imbalance which triggers Attention Deficit Disorder, and you are 16, then you are chronologically really 11. Now, I want you to think about that.

If you’re a high school teacher right now, and you’ve got this kid in your classroom, you’re expecting them to act like they’re 16, but they’re 11. You got a five year old in your classroom. How old are they going to be? Two, three, and now you got to think about, “How do I manage the behavior of a five year old or an 11 year old?”

Developmentally, they are not anywhere where they are chronologically. We got to always think of that.