Strategies to Help Teens With ADHD Develop Better Deductive Reasoning Skills

Concerns with lagging in deductive reasoning – Teachers or parents may be frustrated with the child being ‘unmotivated’ or ‘lazy.’ In reality, they may be working hard but struggling due to their cognitive challenges.

Your child might be struggling with deductive reasoning if:

  • They struggle to complete tasks that require logical thinking or problem-solving
  • They have difficulty understanding abstract concepts or grasping the logical connections between ideas.
  • They struggle to follow multi-step instructions because they have a difficulty in understanding the logical sequence of the steps involved.
  • They have trouble contributing to group discussions or partaking in collaborative activities
  • They struggle to make logical connections between the various concepts being taught in class
  • They are inattentive in class
  • They have difficulty organizing their thoughts coherently in written or verbal communication

This continued misunderstanding of the child may lead to:

  • Teachers or parents might perceive the child as “lazy” or “unmotivated”
  • Peers labelling the child as “slow” or “dumb,” which can result in social isolation or bullying.
  • Them being seen as disobedient or inattentive
  • Them being perceived as uncooperative or disinterested when it comes to others
  • Them being perceived as having poor language skills

Parents or teachers might mistakenly assume that the child is not trying hard enough to learn or succeed academically, not realizing that their struggles stem from underlying difficulties in deductive reasoning.

Understanding and acknowledging the challenges faced by children with lagging deductive reasoning is essential to provide appropriate support and interventions to help them overcome these difficulties and succeed academically and socially.

Here are 5 things you can do as parents to support your teen with lagging deductive reasoning:

  1. Provide structure and routines to help your child develop organizational skills.
  2. Encourage open communication and active listening to understand your child’s struggles.
  3. Model good problem-solving techniques and involve your child in the process.
  4. Be patient and supportive, acknowledging small successes along the way.
  5. Foster a growth mindset, emphasizing that skills can be improved with effort and practice.

And, here are 5 things teachers can do to support teens with lagging deductive reasoning:

  1. Use clear, concise instructions and provide examples to illustrate concepts.
  2. Break down complex tasks into smaller, manageable steps.
  3. Provide differentiated instruction to accommodate different learning styles.
  4. Encourage peer collaboration and group problem-solving activities.
  5. Offer additional support and resources, such as tutoring or learning aids.

In conclusion, recognizing and addressing the challenges associated with lagging deductive reasoning in children is crucial for their academic and social development. It’s important for both parents and teachers to move beyond misconceptions of laziness or lack of motivation, and instead, understand that these struggles might be rooted in cognitive difficulties.

Failure to understand this can result in harmful outcomes, including mislabeling, social isolation, and the perpetuation of misunderstandings. By taking proactive steps, parents and teachers can make a significant impact on a child’s journey to success.

If you’d like to get targeted support for your teen, reach out to the team of experts at the Breakthrough ADHD Center today. We’re here for you.


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Steiner, N. J., Frenette, E. C., Rene, K. M., Brennan, R. T., & Perrin, E. C. (2014). Neurofeedback and cognitive attention training for children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder in schools. Journal of Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics, 35(1), 18-27.

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The information provided in this blog is for general educational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. The opinions expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the author's affiliates. The author and affiliates make no representations or warranties with respect to the accuracy or completeness of the contents of this blog and specifically disclaim any implied warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose. The author and affiliates shall not be liable for any errors or omissions in the content of this blog or for any damages arising therefrom or in connection with the use or performance of the information contained in this blog.

Rey Cortez

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