Dyscalculia is a specific learning disability which affects a person’s ability to learn mathematical skills. Dyscalculia is like dyslexia for numbers but unlike dyslexia not much is known about it.

Symptoms can include visual-spatial difficulties (processing what you see) and language processing difficulties (making sense of what you hear).
It affects about 6% of the population.

Dyscalculia is equally as common with girls and boys.


People with dyscalculia

Lack an intuitive grasp of numbers and have trouble learning number procedures.

Can develop a strong dislike for mathematics and may develop anxiety.

Children with dyscalculia can fall behind early in primary school and continue to struggle with maths and science in secondary school.

Can have a poor sense of direction and can be easily disorientated.

Often lack confidence even when they arrive at the correct answer to a math problem.

Things they may find difficult

Counting, calculations and recalling number facts and procedures.

Reading and writing numerals.

Games that involve keeping track of players and scores.

Leaning musical concepts.

Reading maps and telling time.


Things that might help

Allow extra time for solving math problems.

When learning mathematics use written questions and instructions rather than verbal.

Try and make the learning experience fun and active.


Things that are unlikely help

Asking them a maths question in public where they could be embarrassed.

Spending too much time forcing them to memorise mathematical facts as this can be frustrating for dyscalculic children



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