Increasing ADHD reading comprehension

in Blog

Reading requires an incredible amount of sustained focus. In math, a problem can be solved, completed, checked, and then the child can move on to a new problem with new numbers and new requirements. That change is enough to hold the child’s interest.

Reading is a continuous string of words, many times with no quick solutions or the feeling of completion. The nature of reading comprehension, therefore, can often be a struggle for the FastBraiin child.

These steps will help you introduce a new strategy every few weeks to help the words have meaning, keep the story fresh, and improve comprehension.  Whether you are homeschooling your child with ADHD or sending them to public school, these tips will help.

Monitor their ADHD reading comprehension.

Stop after each paragraph, every other or even a page, depending on how your child is reading, and review that section.

What did you read about? What happened?

An older child may want to use sticky notes to keep brief summaries of each page or chapter. A small journal nearby works well to make notes about characters.

Model this strategy for your child, and then help them to get started. If they cannot remember what they read, re-read that section for them and help prompt them for details they may have left out. This approach helps them learn to pause and “digest” the words instead of racing to the end.

Remind them that the goal is not to just read the book; the goal is to listen, hear, learn and remember the story or the subject.

Boost ADHD reading comprehension with Connectors

Finding connectors can be a good way to search the reading material. Help them find connectors that can be associated with things in the book. Many good readers do this silently. It may help your child to start using this strategy by making connections out loud to you. For example: “I wonder why he called him Thor, or why the hammer is like thunder?” “That reminds me of what we talked about in Social Studies yesterday.” By making connections you are creating a stronger ability for information to “stick”. Help them relate to parts of the story.

Graphic organizers

This can be a simple chart or much like a storyboard. Character names and information can be filled in the boxes and arranged so that the reader sees how the book makes the story move. The character may go on a journey. Sketch a map. Add the names of the places he goes and the people he meets.


Visualizing is making a picture in your mind when you are reading. Words do not stick with us like a picture does. For beginners to learn visualization, they may need to sketch on paper to develop the skill. Older readers can be told to create a “mini movie” in their mind using the details they have read.

These few tools will help connect the reader to the story and increase comprehension.

You will be changing how your FastBraiin students read and understand, and teaching a skill that they will use the rest of their lives.