1. Chapter 1. introduction
In this thesis the dilemma of kids with special need in Malaysia will be explored, literature review on the Effects of the Physical Environment on Children’s Development, to investigate the relationship of built environment and performance of ADHD kids; an integrated school that can cater all types of learners to provide learning and treatment simultaneously. Enhance the learning experience for ADHD kids.
1.1. Understanding ADHD
The term ADHD, as known as attention deficit hyperactive disorder or Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) is a neurological condition often used to describe someone who has difficulty in focusing, difficulty staying seated, hyperactivity or is unable to control their behaviours, these behaviours can be classified into two main categories: hyperactivity-impulsiveness and poor sustained attention. ADHD is not a disorder of attention, rather it’s an abnormal development in the brain circuitry that controls inhibition and self-discipline
(Pierangelo & Giuliani, 2015). Everyone are born
with certain skills in order to live through daily life, but people with
diagnosed ADHD they learnt differently from others and often have difficulties
to regulate themselves. These difficulty can exist in the areas of behaviour,
attention and motor movements (Strong & Michael O.Flanagan, 2005, p. 10). Person who has
diagnosed ADHD showing potential difficulties in many different area and the
conditional itself can be vary from one and another. For instance, one child
with ADHD may display significant problem in reading, on the other hand another
may have no reading problems but has significant difficulty with written
expression (Beisner, n.a., p. 1). As can be seen, inattention component of ADHD
affects educational experience of these children have causes them to have
difficulty to give close attention to details, make careless mistake not to
mentioned if students are being placed in mainstream classroom with numerous
amount of distraction.
1.2. Causes of ADHD
ADHD has traditionally been viewed as a problem related to attention, stemming from an inability of the brain to filter competing sensory inputs such as sight and sound. Recent research, however, has shown that children with ADHD do not have difficulty in that area. Instead, researchers now believe that children with ADHD are unable to inhibit their impulsive motor responses to such input (Barkley, 1997).
1.3. Statistic of ADHD
ADHD is a complex condition also as a highly prevalent disorder that is estimated to affect between 5 to 10 percent of children and 3 to 6 percent of adult worldwide. Currently Malaysia has a prevalence rate of 3.9 percent
(LAI, 2014). It is most commonly
diagnosed development disorder in children, a condition that has been
recognized but constantly being overlooked in Malaysia.
1.4. Addressing ADHD stigma/ Stigma of having a condition of ADHD
“It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept, and celebrate those differences.” ― Audre Lorde, Our Dead behind Us: Poems
Children should be provided with the education system and learning environment that suit their learning style, as children who can cope and adapt in regular school, there are children who cannot. In Malaysia, parents are reluctant to send their children to a designated learning centre, because public awareness regarding special learning difficulty is relatively low in Malaysia, common belief disorder will improve as the child growth older, stigma of having their children in a different learning environment will be seen as a mental illness, these individual are frequently being labelled as problematic child with hyper energy instead. Apart from that, its diagnosis and treatment have been considered controversial, the actuality of the disorder itself and the use of medications in treatment, there are arguments say it is a made up illness by pharmaceutical company, designated to sell drugs to kids.
1.5. Treatment for ADHD in Malaysia
Early detection and early intervention program – significant improvement. Research shows that behaviour therapy is an important part of treatment for children with ADHD. ADHD affects not only a child’s ability to pay attention or sit still at school, it also affects relationships with family and other children. Children with ADHD often show behaviours that can be very disruptive to others.
1.5.1. Behaviour Therapy
Behaviour therapy is a treatment option that can help reduce these behaviours. It is often helpful to start behaviour therapy as soon as a diagnosis is made.
Michael O.Flanagan, 2005)
1.5.3.Family Support & Education
1.5.4.ADHD & Classroom
1.6. Aims & Objectives
The awareness of learning disability in Malaysia is relatively low compare to other country, ADHD is not a common term and topic that Malaysian talk about, people tend to ignore when the problem does not affect them. Therefore the aim of this thesis is to provide a better understanding on how student who has diagnosed ADHD can learnt in regular school by overcoming the design issues of current school in terms of classroom design, building program and space planning and to overcome the stigma of kids with ADHD. Currently there is zero school that is designed or built with appropriate teaching and learning facilities or material to cater for students who learn differently especially ADHD kids. Therefore, design strategies will be proposed in order to establish a guideline when designing school to cater all types of students with different learning ability to learn under a same roof in the future.
2. Problem Statement
2.1. Existing problems and issues
2.1.1. Kids with special needs are constantly being overlooked/ neglected
2.1.2. Lack of knowledge and awareness
2.1.3. Stigma of having mental disorder, missed out early treatment
2.1.4. Design of classroom in general school does not fit the way ADHD kids learnt
Kids with special needs are constantly being overlooked and undertreated. Student who was diagnosed with ADHD is attending regular school in regular classroom is common in Malaysia, according to Ms. Cheeh; a private school teacher from Sri. KL Subang, who have been teaching for the past 6 years and have two diagnosed ADHD students in her classroom.
Figure 2: Location of Sri KL Subang
Students of ADHD are highly sensitive to stimulants and Sri KL is located in Subang Jaya, Petaling district facing SS15 roundabout and LDP highway which poses a lot of noises and pollution during both day and night time. Students with ADHD ….
Parents of both students are aware of the existing problems but refused…
Parents of both students are aware of the existing problems but refused…
2.2. Existing ADHD centre Design ( Hills Learning )
2.2.1. Financial issue
2.2.2. Restrictive environment
3. Chapter 3 – Design Strategies
3.1. Classroom Design
A very important component of a strategy for effectively educating children with ADHD involves physical classroom accommodations. Children with ADHD often have difficulty adjusting to the structured environment of a classroom, determining what is important, and focusing on their assigned work. They are easily distracted by other children or by nearby activities in the classroom. As a result, many children with ADHD benefit from accommodations that reduce distractions in the classroom environment and help them to stay on task and learn. Certain accommodations within the physical and learning environments of the classroom can benefit children with ADHD.
Teachers can help prepare their students with ADHD to achieve by applying the principles of effective teaching when they introduce, conduct, and conclude each lesson. Students with ADHD learn best with a carefully structured academic lesson-one where the teacher explains what he or she wants children to learn in the current lesson and places these skills and knowledge in the context of previous lessons. Effective teachers preview their expectations about what students will learn and how they should behave during the lesson.
3.2. Minimalize Sensory Distractor
3.2.1. Space planning & Zoning
3.3. Material application