Teaching Tips‎ > ‎

Is your APD child being stubborn when he does not do what you say?

posted Mar 3, 2017, 8:03 AM by Judi Munday   [ updated Mar 3, 2017, 8:05 AM ]
Thinking that an Auditory Processing Deficit child is disobedient or stubborn is one of the most common comments I hear from parents! If that were true, one might have to believe the the child WANTS to get in trouble all the time.... but I don't think that's likely. It's important when you have the difficulty some parents describe as "stubborn" or "disobedient" that you realize that the APD makes it almost impossible for your child's brain to keep up as you are giving directions or talking with him. (If you are old enough to remember phonograph records, you remember that some were 78 rpm speed (fast) and some were 33 rpm (revolved slowly). The APD child has normal hearing ears that can hear. When you speak, your information is coming at him at at 78 rpm-- but his APD brain often processes what you are saying at 33 rpm! So there are gaps, or simple "drop out times" when nothing is going in or he simply cannot keep up.
It's impossible for him to describe that brain activity - so he either looks zoned out or he doesn't respond as you expect! To put yourself in his shoes, try to recall one of the radio ads that runs all the "fine print" of an offer spoken at an impossibly rapid rate that they hope you cannot fully remember! It's like that for your child! So...how can you help? Slow down! One article I read suggested you say to yourself "1000" between each sentence. If you have a list of directions for your child, you'll probably need to tell him one (maybe two) things to do, and then get his attention all over again and deliver the rest of the directions. Create chore lists with check-lists and/or pictures. Once you appreciate what his world is like, I suspect you'll have lots more empathy and stop viewing him as "stubborn."