5 Creative Activities to Help ADHD Students Focus

With so many distractions all around us, it’s often hard for kids to stay focused. But for a child with ADHD, it’s a daily struggle. 

Because kids with ADHD are prone to hyperactivity, they may have short attention spans and experience problems with impulse control. All of this can impact their K-12 academic performance.

If you’re looking for strategies to help ADHD students channel their energy and keep them engaged and focused, here are five creative activities for students with ADHD.

1. Physical Activity

Physical activity is a wonderful way for any child to burn off excess energy. School can be frustrating for kids who struggle to concentrate all day. Having an athletic outlet during the day can be a welcome respite.

High-energy activities provide much-needed stimulation. Individual-based activities like swimming, horseback riding, tennis, golf, or martial arts are great outlets for the ADHD child. 

These sports often involve complex movements and training but can be performed without the added pressure of keeping up with the team.

Some kids with ADHD struggle with team sports. They may have trouble with executive functioning which involves moving from task to task. They may become impatient working with a large group or lose focus during games or matches.  

2. Meditation and Yoga

Many kids with ADHD often turn their excess mental energy inward, creating more pressure and stress to keep up or concentrate.

Kids with ADHD often experience a flood of sensory stimulation and hyperactive thoughts. Practicing mindfulness and meditation can be life-changing for a child struggling with ADHD. These outlets provide an anchor against intrusive thoughts and anxiety.

Meditation and yoga are wonderful for helping kids center their thoughts and feel the connection between the mind and the body. When a child is feeling frazzled, overwhelmed, or out of control, these relaxation techniques can work wonders.

Some of the benefits of meditation and yoga include:

  • Attention control
  • Impulse control
  • Increase in “feel good” hormones in the brain
  • Feelings of calm and relaxation

Meditation and yoga are beneficial to all kids, but parents might find that these activities are especially helpful for those with ADHD.

3. Music and Dance

Listening to music, playing an instrument, or participating in dance can help kids with attention issues. Music and dance can help children hyper-focus on something beautiful and positive.

Music lessons can benefit kids with ADHD in the same way playing an individualized sport like tennis, swimming, or horseback riding can. Some ADHD kids find learning to play an instrument easy. Others may prefer singing or dancing. 

The constant absorption of new information along with sensory stimulation can help hold a child’s attention. Making music a part of your child’s daily routine can help them stay focused on an enjoyable activity. 

Music can be a source of comfort when a child is feeling stressed. Allowing your child or teen to create a playlist of their favorite music can give them a sense of satisfaction and accomplishment, as well.

Some kids with ADHD have trouble getting up and getting motivated in the morning. Playing rhythmic music can help signal the brain to get moving and started on a specific set of tasks, like getting ready for school.

4. Nature Walks 

Kids of all ages can benefit from going outdoors and experiencing the wonders of nature. 

Teens with ADHD often love being outside. It’s freeing and a welcome break from the typical classroom setting. Talking regular nature walks can benefit kids with ADHD in a variety of ways.

Burn Off Excess Energy

Hiking is a strenuous activity. Introducing hiking to ADHD kids can benefit them mentally and physically. 

Hiking teaches kids to appreciate the beauty of nature, gets them physically moving, and helps to channel excess energy in a positive way.

Reduce Negative ADHD Symptoms

Kids with ADHD who spend time in nature may experience a reduction in negative ADHD symptoms. A recent study found that just 20 minutes outdoors can have a positive impact on behavior and mental health.

Improve Attention Span

Nature walks help mitigate some of the negative symptoms of ADHD. Kids who deal with attention deficit issues and problems with concentration may see improvement after spending time in a peaceful outdoor setting.

Getting kids away from screens and into nature is always positive, and this is especially true for a child with ADHD.

5. Arts and Crafts 

Art is a wonderful outlet for kids with ADHD. Whether it’s drawing, painting, sculpting, or another art form, art is an individual passion. Kids can express themselves and share their creativity through art.

Art provides a tangible outlet for kids. It allows a child with ADHD to focus and work toward a goal. Art also helps kids be more present and engage in the activity at hand. 

Giving kids an opportunity to explore their creativity can enhance their self-esteem and develop their unique artistic expression.

Creative Activities for Teens With ADHD

All kids need creative outlets to escape the everyday stressors that come with school and academics. The right creative activities can help kids with ADHD channel their energy and improve their focus in and out of the classroom.

When it comes to academics, our highly credentialed and caring tutors at Educational Connections have had great success working with kids with ADHD.

We’d love to help your child too! Contact us today for a free tutoring or executive function consultation and let’s start creating your child’s personal learning plan.