Teacher Toolbox

Difficulties maintaining an efficient work pace in school

  • Use sand or visual timers to help the student experience specific lengths of times. Have the student select how many flips of the sand timer before there is a break, or show hands on a manual clock for when deadline is complete. Gradually increase the length of time before there is a break.
  • Print and use a visual clock


  • Lessen the length of an assignment. Grade assignments on accuracy rather than the amount of completion.
  • Use non-stressful instructions.
  • Break large assignments into manageable tasks. Establish with the students the goal to complete the assignment. Set check times to have selections completed if the child does not find this too stressful.

  • Use rubrics to provide a reminder of the expectation of the assignment.
    Present tasks in manageable pieces, clearly define the grading expectations
    Example: Teacher rubrics for analyzing important Information on child's reading assignment. Describe to the child how their reading assignment work is being judged and the expectations for each part of the assignment, (1) determining the main idea, (2) noting important information, and (3) putting the information together.
    Expectation Beginning Emerging Mastered
    Main Idea Provide details to describe the passage Student uses important details to tell what the passage is about - has some misunderstandings Presents the Main idea succinctly
    Important Information Student tells everything he knows about what he has read Student describes using some of a story frame word Student tells about the main characters, events, problem, and/or solution
    Putting the information together to formulate a conclusion or summary Disorganized, several misunderstandings Identifies beginning, middle, and end of a story - leaves out important facts or details Uses the main idea, describes the story using beginning, middle, and end, and presents conclusions.