Teaching materials for Sustained Attention program

This teaching material is designed to teach children to sustain attention through activities, and generalize concepts related to zoo animals and surroundings.

Teaching objectives:

  1. Helps develop fundamental Learning How to Learn skill.
  2. Increases duration of attending to environmental stimuli.
  3. Helps increase student’s engagement in the learning process.

Prerequisites to Sustained Attention Program:

  1. Basic contingencies (understand the relationship between work and reward)
  2. Basic compliance and Learning how to Learn Skills (such as able to sit still, listen to teacher’s instructions and tolerate negative feedback or restart of a task)
  3. Basic matching skills
  4. Basic imitation skills

Materials needed:

  1. Download the ZOO Animal teaching material template (Total 3 sheets). Cut out the animal labels and laminate the boards and labels. Or DYI your own material. Prepare a board with labels that your children are familiar with. Make an identical copy with the labels being cut out from the board.
  1. Velcro – put the Velcro on the board and underneath all the target labels.


  1. Put the complete board on a whiteboard or wall for instructor.
  2. Give another identical board (with missing labels) and individual cut-out labels (the set with Velcro) to the student.
  3. Instructor points at one of the labels on the board.
  4. The student is requested to pay attention to which label is being pointed by the instructor and remove the selected label off from their board and place it in a container.
  5. The task is completed when the student remove all labels correctly from their board.

Common problems:

When the student is not paying attention and misses out on a label, redo the WHOLE task until the student is able to pay attention throughout the entire activity.


• In the beginning, to ensure the student understands the contingency of this activity, you may put the two boards closely and perform the activity side by side to help the student follow and attend more easily. You may then gradually increase the proximity once comprehended.
You may provide physical prompt by helping the student to remove the labels if they don’t understand what to do.

You may point to the labels with an exaggerated gesture to allow the student to see clearly.

You may point to the label and stay for a longer period of time to allow the student to process the information.

You may decrease the number of labels on the board if there are successive failures.

Extension Practice:

If the student’s attention span increases after practice, you may increase the complexity of each presentation. For example:

  1. Increase the number of labels in the picture, or
  2. Adjust the timing of the movements to increase task level difficulty, such as point to the labels at a faster speed or shorten the duration of time your finger rests on the labels.