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Self-regulation resources and training to support children’s mental health


Children as well as adults are finding it increasingly harder to focus and concentrate due to the constant distractions around.

Experts have found that children can concentrate hard for around 3-5 mins for every year of their life so a 6 year old child can focuser around half an hour while a 10 year old can concentrate for an hour.

These timings can seem impossible for some children and so simple slow steps are required to slowly build their power of concentration.

Concentration can arise due to a lack of sleep, poor nutrition and family stress and upheavals.

Signs of poor concentration:
Finds it difficult to sit still and gets distracted easily
Finds it difficult to remember and learn facts
Finds concentrating on homework hard

Tips to aid concentration:
Keep your child physically active
Minimise distractions and keep noise levels low
Reduce screen time and encourage non computer activities 
Create achievable goals and rewards
Make a simple timetable for playtime, work time, quiet time, family time and fun time
Encourage ‘quiet time’
Fidget toys are a great support for children who need sensory stimulation – they can help improve concentration and allow the brain to filter out noises and voices
Give your child a fidget toy to help them feel more calm and relaxed manage their stress and anxiety

Here are some fidget toy ideas:
* A piece of velvet or textured cloth
* Putty
* Blu Tack
* Velcro
* Stress ball
* Paperclips
* Smooth pebble

You can also try playing games such as snap or memory to improve brain power and focus.

Colouring and spot the difference sheets can help young children concentrate.

The Memory game where you put 10 or 20 items on a tray, let them look for 30 seconds and then cover up the items and let them remember what was on the tray can aid concentration.