Learning and Sharing

We Are Lovin’ This App!

on February 18, 2016



Executive functions are basically a set of mental processes that help us organize our experiences, information and actions.  When a child has an executive function issue, any task that requires planning, organization, memory, time management and flexible thinking becomes a challenge.  The following information is from

In school, at home or in the workplace, we’re called on all day, every day, to self-regulate behavior. Executive function allows us to:
– Make plans
– Keep track of time and finish work on time
– Keep track of more than one thing at once
– Meaningfully include past knowledge in discussions
– Evaluate ideas and reflect on our work
– Change our minds and make mid-course corrections while thinking, reading and writing
– Ask for help or seek more information when we need it
– Engage in group dynamics
– Wait to speak until we’re called on

A student may have problems with executive function when he or she has trouble:
– Planning projects
– Comprehending how much time a project will take to complete
– Telling stories (verbally or in writing), struggling to communicate details in an organized, sequential manner
– Memorizing and retrieving information from memory
– Initiating activities or tasks, or generating ideas independently
– Retaining information while doing something with it, for example, remembering a phone number while dialing


For my students working to improve executive function skills, this app is the bomb!  A playful take on the classic Towers of Hanoi puzzle, players move a stack of animals from a tree stump on the left to one the right by moving one animal at a time. Only smaller animals can stand on the backs of larger ones!  To be successful, players must carefully plan and execute moves as the clock ticks.  They don’t even realize that they are planning and organizing!



Happy Thursday!




One response to “We Are Lovin’ This App!

  1. Evegcampbell says:

    What a great summary of executive function. It’s so hard for me to explain but this really sums it up! Thank you.

    Sent from my iPhone 804-539-2684


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