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Fidget Toys for Better Attention and Focus in the Classroom
This article provides helpful fidget toys to improve your child’s attention and focus in the classroom. Affiliate links are included for your convenience. Integrated Learning Strategies (ILS) is a learning and academic center. As a reminder, ILS is not a health care provider and none of our materials or services provide a diagnosis or treatment of a specific condition or learning challenge you may see in your child or student. If you seek a diagnosis or treatment for your child or student, please contact a trained professional who can provide an evaluation of the child.
It’s usually hard for any child to attend and focus through an entire day of school, but for some it’s even harder. Kids who struggle with Sensory Processing Disorders, ADHD, Dyslexia, processing issues, and other learning challenges often have trouble with concentration. Because there is often a gap in learning, sitting still in a classroom setting can make learning even more challenging. Kids who have a hard time sitting in their chair or listening to the teacher may have a hard time with the following:
- Filtering out noise
- Wearing clothes with tags, itchy material or tight fitting pants
- Sitting upright in their chair or staying seated without movement
- Not distracting or bothering other students
Motor Skills and Attention
If your child also has poor gross motor skills, bad posture, vision issues and low muscle tone, it could be a contributing factor to their attention and focus in school. Children need movement to engage the brain for higher learning. As recess and movement activities decline in the classroom, teachers are seeing more attention and focus issues in their students.
Many fidget toys are no longer allowed in the classroom because they are often disruptive. Who can blame teachers if one student is spinning a fidget toy around their nose or they fling it across the room, hitting their neighbor. Fidget toys aren’t always used for what they were meant for in the classroom. However, there are options that are less distracting for those children who actually need them and the movement to stay seated.
Fidget Toys for Attention and Focus
For children who are continually distracted, fidget toys can help kids do the following:
- Self-regulate their bodies
- Stay calm and focused
- Prevent the child from disrupting their neighbors
Any type of movement activities the child can do while still sitting in their chair is important for their learning development and gets the brain working.
Movement for Fidgeting
Many people are surprised to find that more movement actually helps control the body and improves learning. The truth is, tactile learning, sensory integration and movement helps the right and left sides of the brain work together. It connects both the creative side to the logical side, providing a balance to your child’s academic development. Instead of getting emotional or throwing a tantrum because your child can’t remember the assignment they were asked to complete, they are able to think logically, problem solve, and determine what the teacher instructed during the day.
Children that physically can’t stay still in their seat often depend on fidget toys for controlling their emotions, which frees up their brain for the following:
- Critical thinking
- Reading concepts
- Getting thoughts on paper
- Making their skill set automatic
When children lack attention and focus because they don’t have the movement they need, their body isn’t thinking about math, words on a page, or what the teacher is saying during circle time.
Fidget Toys we Love
Fidget toys don’t have to be big. However, they should be quiet so they don’t distract other students. The great part about small fidget toys is that they are typically inexpensive and you can switch out toys each day so your child has something new and doesn’t get bored. You may need to alternate different items as they grow out of them or improve their sensory integration.
Here are a few of the fidget toys we love.
Integrated Learning Strategies is a Utah-based center dedicated to helping mainstream children and children with learning challenges achieve academic success. Our services provide kids with non-traditional tutoring programs within the Davis County, Kaysville, Layton, Syracuse, Farmington, and Centerville areas. Areas to find Integrated Learning Strategies include: Reading tutors in Kaysville, Math tutors in Kaysville, Common Core Tutors in Kaysville, Tutors in Utah, Utah Tutoring Programs