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									                    Dyscalculia   1




    Dyscalculia

 Emilee Segreaves

    EDSP 210

Mrs. Donna McCune

  October 3, 2011
                                                                            Dyscalculia        2

                                          Abstract

Little research has been done on the learning disability of Dyscalculia. It is a learning

disability in mathematics that affects many children. Difficulties in simple mathematical

concepts, such as, counting, making change, keeping track of time, and not understanding

word problems, are all symptoms that Dyscalculia might be present in a child. There are

two different types of tests that may be used to test a child for this disability: “Piagetian

test of conservation of number, classification and seriation”, and the “Rey-Osterrieth’

Complex Figure Test.” Teachers need to learn strategies to help the children with

Dyscalculia succeed in mathematics. These strategies include: teaching mathematic

vocabulary, using visuals, providing students with sufficient practice, and guiding

children in word problems.

Vaidya, S. (2004). Understanding Dyscalculia for Teaching. Education, 124(4), 717.
      Retrieved from EBSCOhost.

                                          Opinion

       I thought this article was very interesting. I never knew what dyscalculia was, and
this article really gave a good explanation to what it was. I found it interesting how a lot
of the signs of dyscalculia are things that most children have difficult times doing at
young ages in math. I think that a lot of children have a hard time understanding certain
aspects of math and cannot grasp certain aspects, and teacher’s think the child will
eventually get it, and this is why many cases of dyscalculia go unnoticed. This article had
a good insight of how to diagnose dyscalculia. It also provides a few strategies to use
when you have are teaching a child with dyscalculia. I really liked the idea of teaching
math as if it was a second language. I plan on using this strategy in my own classroom. I
believe that it is important that children understand all of the words used in math, in order
to ensure the child understands and comprehends what is being asked.
                                                                          Dyscalculia     3

       According to the Learning Disabilities Online, Dyscalculia is defined as, “A
severe difficulty in understanding and using symbols or functions needed for success in
mathematics.” That is basically saying that the basic concepts of math are found to be
difficult in children with dyscalculia and that is a why they have a harder time doing
higher-level math. Children who do not understand the basics will have a very hard time
moving onto harder math concepts that are built upon the more basic ones.


Characteristics:
      Place values, quantity, number lines, positive and negative numbers, borrowing
       and carrying are difficult
      Word problems are hard
      Following sequences and steps are difficult tasks
      Making change with money is hard
      Organization of the problem is difficult (ex. Numbers aren’t lined up)
LDA. (2004). Dyscalculia. Retrieved from
      http://www.ldanatl.org/aboutld/parents/ld_basics/print_dyscalculia.asp

Implications for teaching:
      Students don’t retain information
      Have to repeat instructions several times
      Have to repeat how to do the problem several times
      Students take a lot of time figuring out the answer
      Students perform poorly on tests because they have a difficult time coming to
       the answers
      Teaching methods are geared towards doing more “hands-on” things
Implications for learning:
      Student is given extra time to complete math problems
      Student is given the tools to help them succeed
      Student has better understanding through the use of manipulatives, pictures
       and diagrams
                                                                        Dyscalculia     4

M.I.C.E. Strategies Dyscalculia

Management:
  1. By providing a child with dyscalculia a peer tutor, a relationship will form. A
     student often has the ability to explain a concept in a way that a child with
     dyscalculia can understand. This would help the child not only develop
     understanding and comprehension of the appropriate math concept, but also create
     a friendship between the two children (LDA, 2004).

Instructional:
   1. Using concrete examples will help the child with dyscalculia because it will help
       them understand more basic concepts before moving on to harder concepts. Using
       concrete examples that can be related to the “real world” and everyday life can
       help the child grasp the idea quicker (NCLD, 2006).
   2. Drawing pictures and using diagrams is beneficial to a child with dyscalculia
       because it provides a visual representation of a math problem. Most children with
       dyscalculia have a difficult time understanding word problems and what they
       have to do to get the result. Therefore, creating a diagram or picture helps the
       student see what is being asked (LDA, 2004).
   3. The use of colored pencils can be useful to children with dyscalculia because it
       helps them organize the problem. As a teacher, color coordinating different parts
       of the problem will provide the student with a better understanding of the problem
       (LDA, 2004).
   4. Repetition of the previous days’ lesson will help strengthen possible weaknesses
       that the child with dyscalculia might have had the day before. By reiterating
       previous lessons, students are improving their skills and preparing themselves for
       the more difficult concepts that are to come in the future (Chandler, 2010).

Curricular:
   1. Because children with dyscalculia take a longer time figuring out math problems
      that may be simple, it is necessary to provide these children with extra time on
      assignments and tests. These children are not “dumb;” they just think in a
      different manner when it comes to math, and therefore, take a longer time
      answering questions and computing answers (Roth, 2010).
   2. Teach math like it is a second language. Math, like a foreign language, uses a lot
      of vocabulary. Lack of understanding the vocabulary will result in difficulties in
      figuring out what is being asked. A cause of difficulties in math with a child with
      dyscalculia is due to their lack of understanding what is being asked in a
      particular problem. So, if math is taught like a second language, with a big focus
      on the vocabulary, children with dyscalculia will not feel confused when it comes
      to “decoding” word problems (Vaidya, 2004).
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Environmental:
   1. To ensure optimal learning for a child with dyscalculia, an area that is free from
      distractions that is equipped with the appropriate tools should be provided. An
      area free from distractions will help the child focus and learn without the
      disruptions other students may provide. This area should be fully stocked with
      graph paper, scrap paper, pencils and erasers, which the student can access if
      necessary (NCLD, 2006).
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            Warning Signs of Dyscalculia by Age according to NCLD (2010)


     Young Children                School-Age Children           Teenagers & Adults

Difficulty learning to count    Trouble learning math facts   Difficulty estimating costs
                                (+, -, *, \)
Trouble recognizing printed     Difficulty developing math    Difficulty learning math
numbers                         problem-solving skills        concepts beyond basic math
                                                              facts
Difficulty tying together the   Poor long term memory for     Poor ability to
idea of a number and how it     math functions                budget/balance a checkbook
exists in the world
Poor memory for numbers         Not familiar with math        Trouble with concepts of
                                vocabulary                    time (sticking to a
                                                              schedule/approximating
                                                              time)
Trouble organizing things       Difficulty measuring          Trouble with mental math
in a logical way
                                Avoid games that require      Difficulty finding different
                                strategy                      approaches to one problem



NCLD Staff. (2010, December 09). What is dyscalculia?. Retrieved from
       http://www.ncld.org/ld-basics/ld-aamp-language/ld-aamp-math/what-is-
       dyscalculia?
                                                                         Dyscalculia     7

                                      References


Chandler, S. (2010, April 01). Dyscalculia strategies. Retrieved from
      http://www.livestrong.com/article/100831-dyscalculia-strategies/

LDA. (2004). Dyscalculia. Retrieved from
      http://www.ldanatl.org/aboutld/parents/ld_basics/print_dyscalculia.asp

NCLD. (2006). Dyscalculia. Retrieved from
     http://www.ldonline.org/article/Dyscalculia?theme=print

NCLD Staff. (2010, December 09). What is dyscalculia?. Retrieved from
     http://www.ncld.org/ld-basics/ld-aamp-language/ld-aamp-math/what-is-
     dyscalculia?

Roth, E. (2010, September 02). Strategies to help children with dyscalculia. Retrieved
       from http://www.livestrong.com/article/219244-strategies-to-help-children-with-
       dyscalculia/

Vaidya, S. (2004). Understanding dyscalculia for teaching. Education, 124(4), 717.
      Retrieved from EBSCOhost.

Woodward, J., & Montague, M. (2002). Meeting the challenge of mathematics reform for
     students with ld. The Journal of Special Education, 36(2), 89-101. DOI:
     10.1177/00224669020360020401.

								
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