Tips on Executive Functioning (time management)

Tips for assisting children and adolescents who have deficits with time management and executive functioning:

  1. Consider using various types of timers to assist with tracking time when a person’s internal sense of time is weak.  Examples include kitchen timers, a Timed Timer (Trademarked product), phone timers, sand timers, or an analog clock with an indication of the time that is targeted.
  2. Introduce and systemically review how long different activities or tasks will take by making a prediction of the time it will take, then actually perform the task or activity, and record and review how long the task actually took.  This will assist with beginning to understand how long tasks actually take.  It can be especially helpful when a child is overwhelmed by a task and thinks that it will take much longer than it actually does.
  3. Set reminders on phones or tablets that will assist with helping a child or adolescent remember an appointment, activity or task.  Make sure that the reminder is something that is novel enough that it will be noticed and responded to in a timely manner.