A very frustrated parent emailed me to ask about the Attention Arcade after taking the assessment “Is My Child a Good Candidate?”:
“So do you think my child will succeed with BrainLeap to become more focused and driven to perform her best in school and life? I have been trying my hardest for the past 14 years to help my daughter become a kind, respectful and smart woman but it lasts a few minutes then attitude and tantrums start and that’s the end of it. I’m frustrated, angry and annoyed to the point that I don’t know what to do anymore.”
Here is my response:
As the father of two teenagers, I can feel your frustration. And while attention training alone will not turn your daughter into a “kind, respectful and smart woman,” it will give her the building blocks.
Based on your answers to the assessment, it sounds like your daughter struggles with executive function. Attention is a foundational skill for executive function.
When your daughter has weak attention skills, it takes a lot of effort to stay focused. After a full day of working hard to stay focused and on task, it can be exhausting. She is more likely to lash out or need alone time. If we can strengthen her attention skills, everyday executive functioning becomes much easier. So, she has more capacity to stay on task and can be more empathetic. One parent shared that after attention training, her 8-year-old son was able to follow his bedroom routine and he was nicer to his younger brother. It was likely because everyday attention was not such a struggle.
If I can use a car analogy:
When attention skills are lacking, you are a Humvee. Every effort requires a lot of gas (energy) to accomplish. You have to refuel frequently and you’re burning resources fast. A Humvee has to pull over far more regularly than a more efficient machine.
When those attention skills are trained and improved you are a Prius. You’re using energy efficiently and therefore, you’re able to go for longer periods of time between refueling (rest and relaxation). This efficient use of energy allows you to stay on the road longer and have to stop and refuel less often. The child with better attention skills can read for longer stretches, work through more complex math problems, and plan projects that require multiple steps over time without the effort causing emotional breakdowns or simply not having the energy or focus available to complete them.
That is a long answer to your question. The short answer is “yes!” I think the Attention Arcade can benefit your daughter.