I have been doing a lot of research lately on dyscalculia. Wondering if my students have it and what I can do to help them. I was pretty amazed at what I found. I learned that it affects 7% of the population. I learned that some students that have dyscalculia are able to overcome it and even go on to pursue careers in mathematics. Wait, what?! Students can overcome dyscalculia? As I was recently informed that students with dyscalculia only see a blank page when looking at mathematical concepts.
Some warning signs of dyscalculia that stood out to me the most were:
- Troubles remembering simple arithmetic facts
- Troubles remembering basic formulas
- Poor sense of time
These warning signs stuck in my head the most because most of my students show these three warning signs frequently. I am always amazed at the number of my students that cannot remember how to find the area of a rectangle. Or cannot remember that zero divided by any number is zero. Turns out it might not be their fault.
The research shows many things we can do to help our students with learning disabilities to be successful in the classroom. In fact, I found lists upon lists of things to do for students with dyscalculia. Most frequently I read that we just need to be more understanding of these students. We need to understand that these students don’t learn the same way most students do and provide them with multiple learning opportunities. It is not impossible for students with learning disables to be successful. We should not give up on these students or lower the bar for these students. We just need to provide these students with more tools to help the bar become attainable.