Essentials Magazine Essentials Fall 2018 | Page 10

Designing Educational Spaces That Support Executive Function BY DR. NANCY SULLA I magine you enter your home, fling open the door, and the door knob punches a hole in your wall. You decide to fix it yourself. All you have to do is “Google” it. You locate a how-to sheet with step-by- step directions for spackling a wall; you find a video of someone demonstrating the process. Easy, right? Not so fast. Suppose you did not possess the skills of focus, following multiple steps, shifting focus from one event to another, catching and correcting errors, attending to an activity, and persisting in a task? Even the best how- to sheet or video would not yield success. Those are just some of the skills of executive function, managed by a part of your brain just behind your forehead.