attention span

         Tips to improving children attention span


 Children with a short attention span may face difficulty in focusing as they tend to get bored and impatient easily which cause them to always be on the move, want to play with everything almost at the same time, 

they are easily distracted which makes it difficult for them to complete a task thus leading to Poor Performance.

 I understand how this can be challenging for parents, carers, and Educators. so I thought of giving you some tips that could help improve children’s concentration 

According to child developmental experts, the average duration of a child’s attention span varies from 2 to 5 min for each year of their age, for instance, a 5 years old child should be able to focus for 10 to 25 minutes depending on the nature of the task and other variables such as the time of the day

 children with a short attention span tend to exhibit the following characteristics;

    • Difficulty in paying attention or concentrating on age-appropriate tasks
    • Easily distracted by unrelated things
    • Struggling to complete an activity may be caused by their inability to listen well to instructions, lose focus halfway
    • Can’t seem to keep still, for instance, standing when they are not supposed to
    • Tendency to interrupt others while they are talking

With the above understanding of short attention span and red flags to look out for; below are some things you can do to motivate your child to focus;


    • Look into their eyes when you talk

 When guiding a child through activity or giving instruction, get down to their height level and look straight into their eye as you talk these will helps them to focus on the message you are sending without the need to look up at you

 You can also get your child to repeat your instructions to ensure he understands what you are trying to tell him so he knows what to do next which helps to enhance a Child’s memory and listening skills



attention span



    • Establish a routine and schedules

Children with a short attention span tend to do well with a set routine, ensure to establish a routine, and follow through with it.

These will help them to do well and guide them as to what to do next, for instance, drawing, building blocks, yoga, etc whatever schedules you decide to try to keep it flexible and fun and while they are carrying out these activities, ensure to keep them away from distractions such as loud noises, pads, Tv etc



    • Remove visual distractions

To help children with short attention span focus without distractions, you need to remove unnecessary clutters and visual aid.

Ensure during activities, there are no such things that can cause distraction around them, this will give the child no excuse not to focus on the task at hand


attention span


    • Short sessions and one task at a time

 As children with a short attention span tend to get bored, it is best to keep the session short and focus on one task or activity at a time

when children with a short attention span are overwhelmed with a string of tasks, they will struggle to organise their thought, control their emotions, lose focus on what to do, so it is best to focus on a task, at a time and make it short 

For Example, you can start by getting your child to focus on a drawing activity before moving to a mathematical session. These help to break up the to-do list so your child can focus and retain information better.


  RELATED;  8 amazing strategies of supporting children with autism in the classroom


    •  Practice what attention means

Teach a child what paying attention means and how it looks, practice attentive behaviour or action through music or dance.

For instance, let them dance i.e ‘move and freeze’ this help to improve a child’s listening skill and build their attention span also you can play a game using a Timer

for instance, have a child build a tower with building blocks before the timer runs out or play the dance around a chair with some other friends, have the music go off during the dance, this can help the child brain to understand what paying attention to look like



    • Let them move

children with a short attention span like to move a lot, its best to let them move in between activities better still section the task at a different spot

These will help to steer their attention on the right track and make them focus before moving to the next activity



Children with attention span tend to do better when given a brief break for active play, to jump, bouncing on an exercise ball, outdoor playing, or providing a quick stretching or jumping in the classroom can all help the attention-challenged focus.

Starting with 10 minute of active play before a challenging task will help a child stay more engaged


    • Play memory game

Memory games help to improve a child’s focus, have a regular time in a day to play a memory game,

the game could be as simple as memory matching cards or I spy or Simon says, these games enable children to concentrate


       RELATED;  8 amazing strategies of supporting children with autism in the classroom 


    • Reward positive behaviour

Positive words and encouragement will help motivate children to improve their attention span, so its best to take note of their effort to stay focused and reward them

For Example, you can reward them with a treat of what would make their day example, their favourite ice cream



    • Break the task into pieces

Children with a short attention span may perform a task faster if you break the task in pieces than having them finish it at a sitting, have them perform the tasks for a short time, and let them complete it later after a short break of stretching or moving around.

As some children struggle with attention more than others, its best to measure how they do in a task and how to help improve their concentration





1 comment on "10 Strategies to improve children’s attention span"

  1. I find your write up amazing,it’s quiet helpful as I deal with children daily

Hi guys, your comment is appreciated

error: Content is protected !!
Launch login modal Launch register modal