our approach

CiMO is committed to improving personal, educational and employment outcomes for young people who face multiple disadvantages. Our approach is grounded in evidence-based interventions that support young people in developing their executive function skills

What are Executive Functions?

 

The term executive function skills describes a set of cognitive processes that reside in the prefrontal cortex of the brain. Essentially, they help us to plan and organise our responses, behaviour and emotions. These are many of the skills that underpin learning and enable children and adolescents to function with a reasonable degree of independence. For example, our executive function skills enable us to keep track of time, stay on task, make plans, to be flexible when things change and to control our impulses.

Graphic of 11 executive functions ask Becky

Why do we need Executive Functions?

 

The development of executive function skills are crucial for successful learning, relationships and are foundational skills for later life and work.

People who find using their executive function skills challenging often have trouble getting started on tasks, get distracted easily, have organisational, planning and prioritisation struggles, poor working memory and cognitive inflexibility. At school or university these challenges can have a significant impact on academic work, revision for exams, completing or handing in homework, and the ability to manage transitioning between tasks. In the working world, challenges with executive function skills often present as putting tasks off until the last minute (or forgetting to start the task at all), poor time management, not allowing turn-taking in discussions, and difficulty controlling emotions. Poor executive functioning can also be a hallmark of neurodiverse profiles such as ADHD, autism spectrum disorder, dyslexia and dyspraxia.

 

How do we help the development of Executive Function skills?

 

The good news is due to the malleable nature of the brain’s neural pathways, we now know that executive function challenges are not fixed. Through effort and repetition we can make changes to the environment to support children and young people to strengthen their executive function skills.

This draws on the scientific concept of neuroplasticity which means that when skills and strategies are taught to overcome executive function challenges, especially to children and young people, the neural connections in the brain are rewired and strengthened with repetition.

CiMO provides access to the support required to aid the development of executive function skills in young people who face multiple disadvantages. We deliver world-class executive function training to our partners as a part of our evidence-based approach to developing, implementing and evaluating bespoke interventions.

We work alongside state primary and secondary schools, education charities, youth centres, alternate provisions and other organisations. We offer:

Group training to increase understanding of executive functions and aid their development in settings in environments where young people with multiple disadvantages require support.
Resources to support embedding an executive function culture in a classroom, youth centre or charity, with lesson and session plans to put the training provided into practice.
Executive function 1:1 coach training to support those with acute executive function challenges
Guidance for parents

 

The Theory of Change

 

Please Contact us for more information on the training and resources we can offer to support executive function skill development