Multiple areas of difficulty and neurodevelopmental conditions

The EPIC intervention and use of associated materials aims to facilitate optimal learning, behaviour, wellbeing and mental health in children and young people. We recently blogged about strategies paired to areas of difficulty.   Today we are going to cover a further key aspect of our approach: targeting multiple areas of difficulty.

Children with neurodevelopmental difficulties most often show multiple thinking difficulties. It is a myth for example that children with ADHD just have a difficulty with attention. Indeed research has shown that many children with ADHD do not have an ‘attention’ difficulty at all. Many children with neurodevelopmental conditions show difficulties in being able to hold and organise information in memory, in automatically using strategies when they are needed, and in other areas like organisation and planning. Some children act distracted not because of a thinking difficulty but because they have sensory processing difficulties and of course classrooms can be noisy places. We emphasise identifying as many of the areas of difficulty a child has and undertaking psychoeducation and using strategies across these components.

How best can we engage children to understand their difficulties and to practice ways to overcome them? EPIC takes a play, game and activity based approach to achieve this. Games that are available routinely in homes like connect 4, snakes and ladders and guess who can be used to identify a child’s thinking difficulties and to practice ways of overcoming them – see our Strategy booklet for examples.  Routine household items can also be used as featured in our ‘tea towel’ memory game and ideas around baking and crafting.  See the booklets for more information on these strategies.

We will post about more of the EPIC underlying principles over the next few weeks. We hope you find our booklets useful. Do please contact us with any feedback you have! 

Visual production credit: Photographer damircudic via Getty Images

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