Growing Independence through Executive Functioning Skills

By Ms. Karen Melville, Head of Skills, Junior School  

Independence is an imperative skill for our students to grow into. A sense of independence allows students to develop confidence in their own abilities and to take responsibility for themselves, their belongings and their learning. As we settle into the school year, we see students of all ages adjusting to new experiences and expectations, which increases their capacity to be self reliant.

For example, our primary students are bringing their own bags, coats and other materials into school themselves. Through establishing routines and class rules, students build capacity and confidence. It is exciting to see how proud they are and how willing they have been to take on these challenges. Students in all primary grades are learning how to manage their bins of materials. Many have identified struggles and brainstormed solutions. Teachers are working to share explicit lessons and allow students to learn how to organize and maintain systems that work for them.

In executive functioning class, intermediate students have been working hard to identify and manage personal distractions and to break larger assignments into smaller pieces. We see students growing and building capacity for greater independence. We are excited to encourage this growth, and we thank you, our parents, for supporting your children in developing these independence skills at home.