2/1/22

Worth Watching: How to ADHD

by Jessica Hanson

As you might imagine, teachers spend A LOT of time thinking about, reading about, and researching how to best meet student needs. This includes looking for resources to help our students gain the important skills they’ll need to succeed independently of us (and their parents), because, let’s face it, that’s our collective job! It was in pursuit of these goals (and reinforced by a “what’s making me happy this week” comment on NPR’s Pop Culture Happy Hour), that I stumbled upon one of my new favorite YouTube channels, How to ADHD.

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These short videos present engaging content and strategies on topics ranging from How to Homework: Top 10 Tips for ADHD Success to Why I Can’t Remember Things – How ADHD Affects Working Memory. The creator, Jessica McCabe, was diagnosed with ADHD at age 12, and draws on both her own experience and the work of experts to demystify and educate folks about the condition.

Most notable for this blog entry, though, are her videos on how ADHD may present in both girls and women. In the past year, I’ve met a number of adolescent girls and adult women who have been recently diagnosed with ADHD. Almost invariably they comment on how relieved they are to know more about their brains before going on to say if they had known earlier, maybe their lives wouldn’t have been so difficult. And for undiagnosed girls, the difficulties could include anxiety, depression, self-harm, and disordered eating

There are a number of reasons why girls are less frequently diagnosed with ADHD than boys, and the point of this post is not to point fingers or assign blame to anyone. Instead, I hope people reading - teachers, parents, students, friends of HATCH - will take the time to learn more about the amazing, complicated, and awesome brains of those around them. And hopefully the tips, tricks, and affirmations on How to ADHD will help us all gain understanding, empathy, and some really helpful life skills, because as we know from the curb-cut effect, what’s good for neurodivergent folks is often helpful for neurotypicals as well!

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