The short video of my granddaughter sanitizing her doll’s hands contains a few important lessons for all of us (available on my Facebook Page).
- Emi-Lee used a ‘tool’ (the hand sanitizer spray bottle) to sanitize her doll’s hands.
- She also used a ‘routine’ as she sanitized her doll’s hands before she put her to sleep.
- She ‘remained focused’ on her task despite the invitation ‘to smile’.
A tool is any instrument or simple piece of equipment that you hold in your hands and use to do a particular kind of work. For example, spades, hammers, and knives are tools. We can however refer to anything that we use for a particular purpose as a particular type of tool.
Diaries, time planners, folders, ‘To-Do’ Lists, Google Classroom, Teams, reading strategies, learning strategies, Apps like the Pomodoro App, etc., are all examples of ‘tools’ that adults and children can use to be more productive and effective.
The challenge is that these tools will not really work or help if you do not have a routine or system in place to use these tools deliberately and consistently.
I constantly hear parents complain that their children are not using tools deliberately and consistently.
- They do not check Google Classroom or Teams for test or projects dates and instructions, and then start too late with a big deadline and run out of time;
- They do not use a diary effectively, so they forget about important homework or projects;
- They complete a project but forget to hand it in;
- They prepare cue cards for an oral but misplace them in a disorganized suitcase and has to redo the cards;
It is important for adults to set an example for children from a very young age to use tools together with routines and systems to be productive and effective with whatever they need to do.
Due to the Covid Pandemic, the whole world had to adapt and start using tools (e.g. face masks, sanitizers, etc.) and routines (e.g. washing hands) to stay Covid free and alive. It has become a norm and even small children are using these tools and routines.
So, why is it so difficult for many adults and children to use tools with routines and systems in a deliberate and consistent way every day?
Can we always just call it ADD/ADHD or Executive Function problems? Or is it maybe also because it is not a norm/value in today’s life to remain focused on goals and to have a clear attraction.