When I think about how to help my kids succeed at school and in life, there’s something I often overlook—the importance of executive functioning. The study of executive functioning is fairly new, but the impact is far reaching.
What’s executive functioning?
Executive Functioning is set of processes that allow us to manage ourselves to achieve a goal.
This includes the ability to organize activities. And in our day-to-day home life, I find this most necessary after school. So we created a weekly calendar for the fridge. The kids can organize their week based on their chores and activities. This not only gives them a feeling of independence, but lets them further develop those all-important executive functioning skills.
- Markers, colored pencils or crayons
- Self-adhesive magnets
Cut out a strip of paper.
Cut out five to seven rectangles to fit on the strip of paper. We chose five because I wanted the focus to be on the school week as we tend to keep our weekends open, but you can absolutely include weekends.
Glue the rectangles onto the strip. Write the days of the week under each one.
Draw pictures of the weekly activities. This can include sports practices, music practice, reading, chores, or whatever fits your family’s needs. You can opt to have the kids write out the activities if drawing isn’t their thing (or you want to work in some extra reading and writing practice).
Cut out the pictures. Place a self adhesive magnet onto the back.
Hang it on the fridge and plan out the week.
I love that this calendar is fully adaptable to your child’s needs and interests. I also love that it requires kids to sit down and plan. That’s huge!
Oh and it makes a nice visual checklist too! Once kids are finished with a task, they can just remove the activity from the box. Easy peasy.