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Using the SETT model for a child with ADHD

There are many accommodations that must be made to meet the needs of children with ADHD. The use of assistive technology, changes in the classroom environment, and alterations in teaching style should be considered. In addition, general education teachers must collaborate with other members of their team, such as special education teachers, consultants, and school psychologists as needed. The SETT model is a great way to outline a strategy that can be used to help a particular child with ADHD. Below is an example of how a teacher can use the SETT model for her benefit.


What must the student do?

The student has the ability to perform well in school, but has trouble concentrating and sitting still in class. This student needs to pay attention in class, and stop distracting other children and taking away their learning.

What are the special needs of the student?

The student needs an adjustment in the classroom environment and adjustments in the curriculum that allow him or her to remain calm and focused. The student also needs the teacher to make appropriate changes in teaching style that facilitate learning and do not allow the student to get bored. In addition, the student must meet with a special education teacher once a week and evaluate her progress.

What are the current skills of the student?

The student has abilities that match or even exceed the average student without a disability. The student has above average intelligence, a potentially good work ethic, and the willingness and ability to learn new material. The student does not have a physical disability in any way.


What materials and equipment are currently available in the environment?

There is a wide variety of materials and equipment available to the teacher, such as a computer, a movie projector, a stereo system, a calculator, and several different books to help educate children. All of this can be used to the benefit of teachers in educating a student with ADHD.

What is the physical arrangement? Are there special concerns?

The desks are currently arranged in 6 groups, each with 4 children. This may cause some concern because this type of arrangement can easily distract this student and cause him to interrupt the other children. There is too much activity directly in front of the child, making it very difficult for him to stay focused on the task at hand.

What is the educational arrangement? Are there likely to be changes?

Currently, the student is sitting in the middle of the classroom. The student should be moved to the front of the room where there will be fewer distractions and the teacher can closely monitor the student throughout the day.

What supports are available to the student?

Supports are available for this student, such as a special education teacher, a resource room, and a consultant if needed. There is also educational software with lots of screens, movies, and music to keep students engaged and relieve boredom.

What resources are available to people who support the student?

The people who support the student also have access to computer programs, movies, and various educational board games and trivia games to educate the student in a more enjoyable way. These individuals also have athletic equipment at their disposal, such as soccer balls, basketballs, softballs, and a softball bat to allow the student to participate in recreational activities a couple of times a day.

How are the attitudes and expectations of people in the setting likely to affect student performance?

The teacher and everyone who works with the student must maintain a positive attitude and be supportive at all times. Everyone should use a calm and quiet tone of voice so as not to wake the student and a sensible system of rewards and punishments should be developed. Punishments should be used infrequently and only when absolutely necessary, and rewards and praise should be given as often as possible.


What activities take place in the environment?

There are various activities that take place such as reading, writing, math, science, social studies, research and group learning, and general teacher instruction.

What is everyone else doing?

All students participate in the same activities as the student with ADHD. The teacher is there to support the student and guide him in any activity that may present difficulties.

What activities support the student’s curriculum?

There are science experiments, creative writing assignments, group projects and reading assignments, spelling bees, worksheets, and several different math games that help support this student’s curriculum.

What are the critical elements of the activities?

The student must realize that he must work together with the other students and must concentrate to be competitive and win activities such as spelling bees or math games. The student must have a good sense of teamwork to be successful and excel in these activities. He must also know not to distract other students and be considerate of the needs of others.

How could the activities be modified to accommodate the special needs of the student?

There are some modifications that can be made to accommodate the special needs of this student. For example, when working on a group project, this student may be in charge of all the writing to keep you busy. Writing assignments may be brief and the student may be given more time to complete them. Instructional teaching can be combined with showing movies and learning on the computer to mix activities. In addition, the student can be given a variety of picture-heavy reading books to help keep her interested.

How might technology support active student participation in those activities?

The student must be allowed to use a computer to write writing assignments. The student can also use programs such as Internet Explorer to research appropriate topics and help find information for their group. The student can also have access to short movies to watch to make learning more interesting. Finally, perhaps the student can listen to music through headphones while working so that they are not distracted by other noises in the classroom.


What strategies could be used to invite higher student achievement? What non-tech, low-tech, and high-tech options should be considered when developing a system for a student with these needs and abilities performing these tasks in these settings?

There are several different strategies that a teacher can use to increase student achievement. The student can spend more time on the computer where she will be away from other students and other distractions. The student may be given permission to move around during the day and be given physical activities such as wiping the blackboard. Assignments should be short and the student should have more time to complete them. The student must be allowed to use a calculator to complete math assignments. Finally, students should receive appropriate feedback and rewards based on their behavior.

How can these tools be tested with the learner in the typical environments in which they will be used?

Each of these strategies should be introduced to the student gradually and their effectiveness should be markedly evaluated. For example, the student should initially be allowed to use the computer for no more than 20 minutes. If this proves to be an effective learning tool, the time can be increased to 30-45 minutes. The student may also view a short 10-minute educational film. If this is able to hold your attention all the time, the movie time can be increased to 15 or 20 minutes.

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