26 Hacks to Get Kids With Comprehension Issues to Understand Instructions

Are you looking for hacks to get kids with comprehension issues to understand instructions? If so, keep reading.

1. Praise the student for listening carefully based on the duration of time the student can be successful. As the student shows success, slowly increase the duration of time the student is required to listen.

2. Give the student instructions on a one-to-one basis before they begin a task.

3. Get the student to ask for help when they need it.

4. Teach the student the relationship between unacceptable behavior and the consequences that follow (e.g., failing to listen to and follow instructions may result in reduced grades, etc.).

5. Train the student to ask people to repeat portions of a conversation they were unable to follow.

6. Refrain from placing the student in situations that require listening for an expanded duration of time such as lectures, seminars, etc. Give the information for the student through a recording or lecture notes.

7. Urge the student to create a 30-second definition of their goal to help remain on-task and focus.

8. Draft an agreement with the student. It should be written within their capacity and ability level and focus on only one behavior at a time. Indicate what behavior is required and which reinforcement will be implemented when the agreement has been met.

9. Provide directions, explanations, and instructions at an appropriate rate.

10. Teach and practice efficient communication skills. These skills include listening, keeping eye contact, and positive body language.

11. Find a peer who has excellent communication skills. Urge the student to observe that peer and model their behavior s that promote excellent communication.

12. Train the student to keep attention to the source of information by keeping eye contact, keeping hands free from other learning materials, and reducing other distractions.

13. Select a peer, paraprofessional, etc., to signal the student when they need to keep attention (e.g., the person can touch the student on the arm when it is time to listen).

14. Urge the student to avoid ingesting any substance (e.g., drugs, alcohol, cold remedies, etc.) that might further alter their capacity and ability to direct or keep attention.

15. Make sure the student is paying attention to the source of information (e.g., making eye contact, hands are free of other learning materials, looking at the task, etc.).

16. Let logical consequences happen due to the student’s failure to follow oral instructions (e.g., schoolwork not done on time, homework is done incorrectly, etc.).

17. Assess the difficulty level of information orally delivered to the student (e.g., information should be communicated on the student’s capacity and ability level).

18. Urge the student to say a mantra to themselves when entering a situation where they will receive instructions/information (e.g., listen carefully, listen carefully, listen carefully).

19. Teach active listening skills. Urge the student to listen to what another person is saying and respond based on information received.

20. Get a peer to give the information that the student does not hear.

21. Consider using a classroom management app to help the student follow directions and instructions . Click here to view a list of apps that we recommend.

22. Consider using Alexa to help you with classroom management. Click here to read an article that we wrote on the subject.

23. Click here to learn about six bonus strategies for challenging problem behaviors and mastering classroom management.

24. Read this article that we wrote on developing listening comprehension skills.

25. Read this article that we wrote explaining why verbal comprehension skills are important to academic success.

26. Read this article that we wrote on what you should do when your child struggles with verbal comprehension.

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