Tools of EF Success

The Tools of the Trade for Executive Functioning Success

When I work with clients, particularly kids and teens, I often hear:
“I can’t find it”
“We don’t have this”
“I have one, but it’s broken”

To be successful in any job or profession, we need the RIGHT tools. We need to know:

  • the names of the tools
  • how to use the tools
  • where the tools are kept

Here are the “tools” that each home should have to support executive functioning:

A printer that works–even while being environmentally conscious, there are times when printing information, such as when making a study packet, is highly useful.

Strong, reliable WiFi–nothing is more frustrating than having difficulty accessing the Internet consistently. Make sure that all family members know how to access and reset WiFi.

Pencils (with good erasers)/Pens, highlighters, whiteboard markers–LOTS of them! We don’t battle over lost ones, we just make sure there is a good supply.

Scissors, glue sticks, bottles of glue–Different projects require different items.

Sets of markers, sets of colored pencils–These are used from elementary school through high school.

A battery-operated or electric pencil sharpener–small pencil sharpeners break easily.

A full-size, sturdy stapler, hole punch, tape dispenser–Having these items helps with organization of materials.

Staples, paper clips, tape, rubber bands, hole reinforcements, binder clips–these items help with maintaining organization.

Small portable magnetic whiteboard–great for practicing spelling, math problems, and managing to-do lists.

Wall calendar-whiteboard or paper calendar–it’s good to be able to look at time over a month, in addition to a day and a week.

File folders and storage boxes–it is recommended not to throw out work in the middle of a school year. Rather, make a file folder for each class and file papers there.

Lined writing paper, graph paper, white printer paper–always good to have extra.

Extra chargers and cables–It’s best when these don’t always have to be moved around.

Extra ink cartridges for the printer–documents that can’t be printed can’t be used or turned in for credit.

Spending some time and energy to make sure you have a place for the tools, everyone knows how to use the tools, and all of the tools work, is a wise investment of your time and energy!!