Hyper focus in school (hyper, whose hyper, me, no it’s you, oh look a squirrel)!
Hyper focus can be either my biggest companion in school or my enemy. I can either focus on the right things to help me in my career, and the school and the children, or I could focus on the wrong thing entirely putting a halt to current operations. Times that it’s a bonus when I randomly fixate on mundane admin task such as marking, data, planning etc. My brain can make anything an addictive game and I can get lost for hours. But on the other hand I can go for weeks ignoring any task that involves any effort as I just can’t focus, I can sit down to mark, or update data or scrutinise data and get distracted by thought that in need to find a specific grey folder right now (I’ll never need it but I need to find it at this moment) this can happen for weeks, I find random reasons to walk around school and talk, I almost brought in my helicopter I made to fly after school as I couldn’t focus. It’s annoying when this happens in pressurised situations when work needs to be done asap and I’m just mulling around.
But equally I can hyper-focus and work I’ve put off for weeks I can do it all in an hour, no distractions. I’ve set new records before when I’ve been in that mood marking whole sets of books and doing admin jobs too quick! But then it digs me a hole as people expect that of me on a regular and it’s not like a switch I can’t control it, it comes and goes and I never know when! But I do love these moments especially when I get to tidy as I can sort the mess that’s been mounting for weeks! It helps clear my head (for all of five minutes, but it’s still five minutes of peace).
It also has a varying degree of success as I teach. When I’m hyper focused my classes get a lot done and process a lot of information in a condense amount of time, which balances it out with the times I’m not hyper focused and my lessons go off on unexpected tangents and lesson where I should have them doing character descriptions turns into a time machine acting lesson, I’m seeing *immersing the children in the lesson. It’s worse when the class haven’t behaved so I promise a boring lesson but I can’t do that as my mind has 25 ideas pop up at once and I take them on a learning adventure.
However when I do not have focus and I’m forever being distracted it means I forget what has been said in the last five minutes. I forget what the children have said, I’ve forgotten what I’ve said and sometimes I forget the aim for my lesson. I could stand in a state of confusion in front of 31 children and not know what I was talking about. Thank goodness for the angel of a teaching assistant that I have. She isn’t aware of my super powers but she manages to try and keep me on task and not detour too much if it is of no benefit to the children. She encourages my randomness but within reason and reassures me that I’m doing the right thing. I’d be lost without her especially when I’m going through my random teaching episodes.