Family Life Education Community Lesson Plan

Community Lesson Plan

  1. Workshop Title: Balancing Act: Families Dealing with ADHD
  • Workshop Scope & Rationale:

Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder is one of the most common conditions associated with school-aged children. This disorder effects about 5% of the children in schools (Tancred, Greef, 2015). About 87% of these students have a co-disorder and many have at least two more. Coping and adaptability in their families is very important.

Children with ADHD and their families are under more stress than other families. It is important that these families learn coping skills and how parenting styles effect the family dynamic. Most children with this disorder have issues with compliance, focus, discipline, and social functioning. Learning appropriate interventions and preventative measures can help families deal with the condition.

Families with ADHD children tend to have more stress, spend more time with discipline, and expend more energy than other families. Increases in stress can cause problems with the parent-child relationship and lead to negative parenting strategies (Theule, Wiener, Tannock,, & Jenkins, 2012). While there have been studies on the positive effects of parenting on ADHD, there are some studies that suggest the negative effects on parenting interventions is a more pressing issue. (Munoz-Silva, 2017). These characteristics can lead to parent burnout, depression, and negative parent-child relationships. Parent training for these families is crucial in finding balance, dealing with disruptions, and successful parenting.

Helping families understand the condition, characteristics, and treatments is a valuable tool for addressing ADHD. Diagnosis of ADHD has increased over the past two decades. Fairman, Peckham, and Sclar’s research have found trends showing greater increases in diagnosis of ADHD in girls and less treatment for non-white ADHD sufferers (2017). This adds to the importance of parent training and education on treatments for all groups, but especially in families of school-aged children.

This workshop is targeted toward community members, educators, parents, and caregivers of school-aged children with ADHD in Nacogdoches county. It is designed to help recognize parenting styles that are most effective, coping skills for family balance and unity, and support systems available in the community.

  • Content area:
  • Internal Dynamics of Families is relevant to families of children with ADHD because the understanding of family strengths and weaknesses and how the family can cope is essential to reducing stressors and strengthening family unity.
  • Interpersonal Relationships is related to this topic because the child-parent relationship and sibling relationships are crucial to dealing with ADHD. Families must work to develop strong support systems and understanding of issues specific to ADHD and related disorders.
  • Parent Education and Guidance is important to this workshop because parents are the first-line teachers of their own children. Developing techniques and strategies for guiding children and adolescents with ADHD is supportive to the family. Parent training on interventions, strategies, and stress reducers for the family are connected to education and guidance.
  • Objectives/Goals:
  • Discuss symptoms, identification, and diagnosis of ADHD in school-aged children
  • Create a list of characteristics of children with ADHD and explore academic and social implications
  • Complete a list of potential coping skills and interventions for families with children with ADHD
  • Recognize at least two community support organizations for families dealing with ADHD
  • Theoretical Framework:

               Explanations for this topic are best described through the family stress theory as related

               to family interactions and the effects on family dynamics. All families have stress, but

               families dealing with ADHD have additional stressors. According to Theule, Wiener,

               Tannock, and Jenkins, moderate stress can be adapted to, but high levels of stress that

                are prolonged have negative implications on families (2012). ADHD is a chronic

               disorder which can cause families to undergo stresses that produce health issues, take

away family unity, and place constraints on time. The earlier that treastments can begin, the better it is for the child and the family. Arnett, MacDonald, and Pennington conducted a study to help identify ADHD in pre-school age children so that treatments could be started earlier (2013).  Finding treatments that help families can reduce stressors. Many families worry about medical treatments with side effects, so finding ways to treat without drugs is important to the balancing act families go through in dealing with ADHD children. According to Young and Amarasinghe, treatments should be tailored to the child and should take into account the needs of the family and the cognitive abilities of the child (2010).

  • Procedures:
  •  Scheduled Activities:

12:00-1:00- Registration, greeting, and light lunch. Overview of the Workshop activities should be given at this time.

1:00-1:45- Session 1: Discussion of Symptoms and Diagnosis of ADHD

1:45-2:00 Restroom Break and “Meet and Greet” with representatives from local support agencies (informal).

2:00-2:45- Session 2: Characteristics and Issues Specific to Children with ADHD-Participants should identify at least one issue which they need support to handle.

2:45-3:00 Snack/Cookie Break

3:00-3:45- Session 3: Explore Treatments, Interventions and Coping Skills for Families with ADHD-Participants should select a least two interventions or strategies to try with their family and create a plan for implementation.

3:45-4:00 Closing and Distribution of Certificates

  • Materials and supplies:

Pamphlets, notepads, pencils, pens, highlighters, post-it notes, projector and sound system for presentations, tables and chairs, plates, cups, napkins, flatware, coffee maker, coffee, tea, snacks such as chips, crackers, cookies, finger sandwiches, toys, puzzles, goody bags, name tags, sign-in sheets, printed certificates, uber contacts, speakers, childcare workers, signs and safety protocols.

  •  Location and time:

I have arranged for this workshop to be conducted at one of the local elementary campuses.

Carpenter Elementary Parent Resource Center located at 1005 Leroy Street, Nacogdoches, Texas 75961

Saturday, May 5, 2018 @ 12:00-4:00pm

  • Registration:

Participants may pre-register online through the school website, by contacting the school office and speaking with the Parent/Community Liaison, or at the Carpenter Elementary Parent Resource Center in person. Registration is free of charge with a donation of a canned good (donating to local Harvest House). Those not wishing to donate a canned good will be charged a $5.00 registration fee. Name tags will be provided upon arrival at the workshop at the sign-in desk.  

  •  Services Provided:

Childcare will be provided for infants and school-aged children.

A light lunch and refreshments will be served for children and adults. (Parents will need to provide appropriate lunch and refreshments for infants.)

  •  Dress Code:

Dress for this workshop is casual. Jeans and t-shirts, capri pants and tops, slacks and blouse are all appropriate attire. Clothing and hygiene should not be distractive to participants. This workshop is for families and has a family-type atmosphere, so discretion should be used. Participants should refrain from revealing, ripped clothing, or unwashed clothes. Night clothes including outing pants and house shoes are not appropriate. Participants not adhering to the dress code will be asked to change or leave the workshop.

  • Community support agencies:
  • Burke Mental Health Center of Nacogdoches 4632 NE Stallings Drive (counseling, mental health, and childhood disorders)
  • Solid Foundation at 2220 East Main Street                                                            (tutoring and family support, childcare)
  • Pineywood Psychological Services at 518 Hospital Street                     (clinical psychological healthcare)
  • Family Network of East Texas at 2912 E. Main Street
  • Health Services Department at 2614 NW Stallings Drive                           (state health services agency)
  • Crossover Counseling at 3524 NE Stallings Drive                                 (family and child counseling services)
  • School counselors at Raguet, Brooks Quinn Jones, Nettie Marshall, Fredonia, Thomas J. Rusk, and Carpenter Elementary schools.
  • Brown Family Health Center at 1407 East Main Street                               (health exams and medical treatment)
  • Certificates:

Issuance of a printed certificate of completion will be presented at the end of the workshop.

  1. Advertisement:

Advertisement for this workshop will be through online social networks such as the Facebook page of all elementary schools, Twitter, and Instagram. Carpenter staff will pass out flyers to students the Monday before the workshop to inform parents. Advertisements will also be located in local businesses and printed in the local newspaper. I have asked the school use their call-out system to announce this workshop, too. Word of mouth in the community will also be used to encourage parents to attend. I will make visits to the apartment complexes located adjacent to the school to place flyers in their community center rooms.  


Arnett, A. B., Macdonald, B., & Pennington, B. F. (2013). Cognitive and behavioral indicators of

      ADHD symptoms prior to school age. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 54(12),

     1284-1294. doi:10.1111/jcpp.12104

Fairman, K. A., Peckham, A. M., & Sclar, D. A. (2017). Diagnosis and Treatment of ADHD in

     the United States. Journal of Attention Disorders, 108705471668853.


Munoz-Silva, A., (2017). Family Impact and Parenting Styles in Families of Children with

      ADHD. Journal of Child and Family Studies. 26(10), 2810-2823.

Tancred, E.M., Greef, A.P. (2015). Mothers’ Parenting Styles and the Association with Family

      Coping Strategies and Family Adaptation in Families of Children with ADHD. Clinical

      Social Work Journal. 43, 442-451.

Theule, J., Wiener, J., Tannock, R., & Jenkins, J. M. (2012). Parenting Stress in Families of  

      Children with ADHD: A Meta-Analysis. Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders.

      21(1), 3-17.

Young, S., & Amarasinghe, J. M. (2010). Practitioner Review: Non-pharmacological treatments

      for ADHD: A lifespan approach. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 51(2), 116-

      133. doi:10.1111/j.1469-7610.2009.02191.x

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