What are Executive Function Skills?

Often it is not a lack of intelligence or an understanding of subject matter that stands in the way of student success. Rather students simply need help strengthening their executive functioning skills, which are basically self-management tools.

Executive Function Skills:

  • Paying attention
  • Organizing, planning, and prioritizing tasks
  • Starting tasks and staying focused
  • Managing emotions
  • Keeping track of what you have accomplished

Executive function skills fall into three main categories –

  • Working memory – the ability to hold onto information and then put it to use
  • Cognitive flexibility – the ability to think about things in more than one way
  • Inhibitory control – the ability to ignore distractions and self-regulate

Now more than ever, with the realities of virtual learning and increased distractions, executive functioning skill development is so important. Developing these skills is just like working out. You have to put in consistent time and effort in order to see results, but that hard work really pays off! Strong executive function skills never stop being useful and will serve students throughout their academic and professional careers. Check out our Services page to see how we approach executive function coaching.

Published by Brett LaFave

I am the founder of BL Tutoring. I teach math at Emma Willard School in Troy, New York. I enjoy riding my bicycle and teaching kids to succeed on standardized tests. I have a dog named Willie.

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