Objective: Children described as having attention deficit hyperactivity disorder often demonstrate inability to sustain visual attention during classroom fine motor activities. This study investigated the effect of wearing a weighted vest (deep-pressure sensory input) on children's on-task behavior in the classroom.
Method: Four students with documented attention difficulties and hyperactivity were timed with a stopwatch to measure their on-task behavior during fine motor activities in the classroom. All 4 students were timed for six 15-min observations without wearing a weighted vest and for six 15-min observations while wearing a weighted vest.
Results: On-task behavior increased by 18% to 25% in all 4 students while wearing the weighted vest. Additionally, 3 of the 4 students frequently asked to wear the vest other than during the observation times.
Conclusion: These preliminary findings support the hypothesis that wearing a weighted vest to apply deep pressure increases on-task behavior during fine motor activities.