Smart but Scattered Teens
The "Executive Skills" Program for Helping Teens Reach Their Potential
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"I told you, I'll do it later."
"I forgot to turn in the stupid application."
"Could you drive me to school? I missed the bus again."
"I can't walk the dog--I have too much homework!"
If you're the parent of a "smart but scattered" teen, trying to help him or her grow into a self-sufficient, responsible adult may feel like a never-ending battle. Now you have an alternative to micromanaging, cajoling, or ineffective punishments. This positive guide provides a science-based program for promoting teens' independence by building their executive skills--the fundamental brain-based abilities needed to get organized, stay focused, and control impulses and emotions. Executive skills experts Drs. Richard Guare and Peg Dawson are joined by Colin Guare, a young adult who has successfully faced these issues himself. Learn step-by-step strategies to help your teen live up to his or her potential now and in the future--while making your relationship stronger. Helpful worksheets and forms can be downloaded and printed in a convenient 8 1/2" x 11" size.
See also the authors' Smart but Scattered (with a focus on 4- to 13-year-olds) and their self-help guide for adults. Plus, Work-Smart Academic Planner: Write It Down, Get It Done, designed for middle and high school students to use in conjunction with coaching, and related titles for professionals.
Winner (Third Place)--American Journal of Nursing Book of the Year Award, Consumer Health Category
Table of Contents
I. What Makes Your Teen Smart but Scattered
1. Executive Skills and the Teen Brain
2. Identifying Your Teen's Executive Skills Strengths and Weaknesses
3. Assessing Your Own Executive Skills and Parenting Style
II. Laying a Foundation That Can Help
4. Ten Principles for Improving Your Teen's Executive Skills
5. Motivating Your Teen to Use Executive Skills
6. Modifying the Environment
7. Teaching Executive Skills
III. Putting It All Together
8. Advance Organizer
9. Enhancing Response Inhibition
10. Strengthening Working Memory
11. Increasing Emotional Control
12. Boosting Flexibility
13. Building Sustained Attention
14. Teaching Task Initiation
15. Promoting Planning and Prioritizing
16. Fostering Organization
17. Improving Time Management
18. Encouraging Goal-Directed Persistence
19. Cultivating Metacognition
Peg Dawson, EdD, is a psychologist on the staff of the Center for Learning and Attention Disorders at Seacoast Mental Health Center in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. She also does professional development training on executive skills for schools and organizations nationally and internationally. Dr. Dawson is a past president of the New Hampshire Association of School Psychologists, the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP), and the International School Psychology Association, and a recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award from NASP. She is coauthor of bestselling books for general readers, including Smart but Scattered, Smart but Scattered Teens, Smart but Scattered--and Stalled (with a focus on emerging adults), and The Smart but Scattered Guide to Success (with a focus on adults). Dr. Dawson is also coauthor of The Work-Smart Academic Planner, Revised Edition, and books for professionals including Executive Skills in Children and Adolescents, Third Edition.
Colin Guare, MS, is a registered behavior technician and writer who works with children and adolescents on the autism spectrum and is currently pursuing his board certification in applied behavior analysis (BCBA). Mr. Guare brings a unique perspective to his work, having grown up with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and managed executive skill challenges throughout his life. With Peg Dawson and Richard Guare, he is coauthor of Smart but Scattered Teens and Smart but Scattered--and Stalled.
An absolute 'must read' for parents. Many detailed examples show you exactly how to teach your teenager the skills needed for success in school and beyond. The clever strategies for getting around teens' creative resistance to making changes are particularly helpful. I will recommend this gem of a book to all of the parents and adolescents I treat.--Arthur L. Robin, PhD, coauthor of Your Defiant Teen
Executive skills are critical to success in life, but may be delayed in some teens and young adults--and parents are often at a loss for how to help. Smart but Scattered Teens is just what parents need. This is a highly useful guide for improving teens' executive skills and motivating them to use the skills they already have.--Patricia O. Quinn, MD, coauthor of Ready for Take-Off: Preparing Your Teen with ADHD or LD for College-The book's 'executive skills' are the critical tools needed to solve problems, manage time, and perform tasks. As many parents know, tweens and teens often lack these abilities....A very helpful addition to parenting shelves.--Library Journal, 2/14/2013ƒƒAn easy-to-read, well-documented, and well-resourced book that, if utilized, would surely better both the relationship between any teen and their parents and also assist the teen in developing better executive function skills….It is a book that can be recommended to parents by professionals working with teenagers….Guilford is to be commended for offering this book at such reasonable pricing. Hopefully it will increase the utility and desire on many parents' parts to purchase this book so that it can help their families and their teenagers.--Child and Family Behavior Therapy, 1/3/2013
Does your teen's behavior have you tearing out your hair in frustration? Quit nagging and use this wonderfully insightful and practical book to coach your 'smart but scattered' teen for personal, educational, and social success.--William Pfohl, PsyD, past president, International School Psychology Association
I was hooked from the first chapter! This book has opened my eyes to ways to foster my son's strengths, not just criticize his weaknesses. With all the issues we battle daily, it's easy to forget the power of the positive. I'm thrilled to have a specific plan of action for targeting the skills my son needs to do better in school and become more focused and responsible.--Kim L.