“Human beings have always told their histories and truths through parable and fable. We are inveterate storytellers,” says filmmaker Beeban Kidron (2012). We, as humans, share our experiences through stories. Young children make up stories to amuse themselves and their parents. Somewhere along the line of traditional schooling, however, storytelling starts to lose its magic for some students. These students, who struggle with the traditional organization and independence of traditional schooling, struggle to write the creative stories they once told as little children.
Bound by pencil, paper, and their own limitations, students with ADHD struggle to write well-organized and well-developed stories. It is, therefore, the teacher’s job to help the ADHD student rediscover his inner storyteller and organize his story in a way that all can understand and enjoy. The use of technology for writing is just one way that research has found improves student writing. As a result, this study will seek to determine if the use of multimedia software, PowerPoint, has a positive effect on the writing of fictional stories by middle school students with ADHD.
Rationale for Study
ADHD is an increasing diagnosis among American students. General education teachers now balance a wide variety of instructional and behavioral needs, as elucidated in IEPs and 504s, while at the same time trying to ensure that all students are successful in achieving academic success as dictated by state standards and expectations. This can be a daunting task and teachers need to be armed with the most effective and most efficient strategies for helping all students achieve their goals.
As an English teacher in a small private school where class sizes are already small, the researcher has undergone a lengthy process in finding the best approach to teach narrative writing. Several of students in the researcher’s classes have ADHD and the researcher often feels that the traditional approach to teaching writing is not what is best for them. For this reason, the researcher proposes to examine the use of multimedia technology on ADHD students’ fictional writing pieces in the middle school classroom to determine if using technology helps or hinders the quality of their written stories.
Review of Literature
ADHD is an increasing diagnosis among students. In fact, 4-12% of schoolchildren have been diagnosed with ADHD (Alberta, 2006, p. 4). This fact is one that has parents, teachers, and doctors partnering together in research. Whether ADHD itself has increased, or whether the knowledge of ADHD had led to increased diagnoses is debatable. Doctors do note, however, that parents of children with ADHD often have ADHD characteristics themselves, indicating a genetic influence, if not a genetic determination (p.3).
Due to the neurobiological nature of the disorder, students with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) struggle with many of the skills required to be successful in a...