He can focus forever on Legos!
If I’ve heard it once, I’ve heard it a thousand times…..
Over the years, I have heard parents (both from my practice and socially) tell me their child can focus SO WELL when he or she is doing something they like to do. They provide examples of creating intricate lego structures, playing videogames, watching TV, or even becoming absorbed in a good book.
I say with a smile that as human beings-child or adult, we can all be focused on something we LIKE to do, but can we sustain focus AT A DEVELOPMENTALLY APPROPRIATE LEVEL for something we find tedious, boring, or frustrating?
For a high-schooler, this might mean taking notes throughout a 50 minute History class; for a six year old, it might mean sitting at the dinner table for 20 minutes without getting up; and for an adult, it might mean getting through an important work deadline on a boring project.
Focus is sustained attention and vigilance throughout the task. A lot of children can be focused at the beginning of a task and once the novelty has worn off, they began to feel distracted. Can they redirect themselves to the task at hand or do they need repeated external prompts to do so?
So if it feels like groundhog day at your house (didn’t I tell you the exact same thing yesterday and the day before and the day before?)… testing may be indicated.