Executive Functions are everyday behaviours associated with self-regulation, problem solving and social interaction. They are higher level functions.

These include the following abilities:

  • Inhibit- to control impulses.
  • Shift- to move freely from one situation to another.
  • Emotional control- to manage emotional responses appropriately.
  • Initiate- to begin a task or activity.
  • Working memory- to hold information in the mind for the purpose of completing a task.
  • Plan/Organise- to anticipate future events, set goals and develop appropriate steps ahead of the time.
  • Organisation of materials- to keep workspaces, play areas and materials in an orderly manner.
  • Monitor- to check work during or after finishing a task; being able to keep track of the effect of your own behaviour on others.

The more intact and automatic the foundational skills are e.g. motor control, eye movements, visual perceptual skills; the greater the availability for optimal executive functioning.