Understanding the condition
Children who experience Dyscalculia find numeracy, arithmetic and mathematical concepts difficult. As a teacher you may notice they struggle with:
Memorising numbers, prices, phone numbers
School timetables and deadlines
Planning, organising and being on time
Carrying and borrowing numbers
Reading the time from an analogue clockface
Dyscalculia is thought to be caused by abnormal development of the part of the brain that deals with mathematical concepts. It is therefore likely that it is genetic however environmental factors can also have an influence these include consumption of alcohol during pregnancy and premature birth.
Dyscalculia can greatly affect a person’s life and education. In severe cases it can affect a person’s future career.
Dyscalculia does not affect a person’s intelligence, they may have excellent communication and other skills.
Children who experience Dyscalculia may also experience maths anxiety. It is vital that children with Dyscalculia feel supported and understood by their school. Children may need help navigating their way through the school day for example understanding when they need to be at their next lesson, understanding how long they have to undertake a task in class.
Challenges faced by students
For children who experience Dyscalculia, as with other disabilities it can be isolating particularly as it impacts their ability to tell time, understand span of time, plan and organise themselves, read digits so for example understanding road signs, prices in shops.
If a child is not adequately supported this can impact on their mental health and wellbeing, educational achievement, independency, life skills and long-term employability.
Research into Dyscalculia is still very much in its early stages.