• What is Dyscalculia?
  • Dyscalculia Symptoms
  • Dyscalculia vs General Mathematical Difficulties
  • Our Intervention Approach for Dyscalculia

Developmental Dyscalculia (DD) is a specific learning disorder that is characterised by impairments in learning basic arithmetic facts, processing numerical magnitude (understanding size) and performing accurate and fluent calculations. These difficulties must be below what is expected for an individual’s chronological age, and must not be caused by poor educational or daily activities or by intellectual impairments (The British Dyslexia Association).

  • Has difficulty when counting backwards.
  • Has a poor sense of number and estimation.
  • Has difficulty in remembering ‘basic’ facts, despite many hours of practice/rote learning.
  • Has no strategies to compensate for lack of recall, other than to use counting.
  • Has difficulty in understanding place value and the role of zero in the Arabic/Hindu number system. Has no sense of whether any answers that are obtained are right or nearly right.
  • Tends to be slower to perform calculations. (Therefore give fewer examples, rather than more time).
  • Forgets mathematical procedures, especially as they become more complex, for example ‘long’ division.
  • Addition is often the default operation. The other operations are usually very poorly executed (or avoided altogether).
  • Avoids tasks that are perceived as difficult and may result in a wrong answer.
  • Weak mental arithmetic skills.
  • High levels of mathematics anxiety. Because mathematics is very developmental, any insecurity or uncertainty in early topics will impact on later topics, hence to need to take intervention back to basics.

Recent research has identified the diverse nature of mathematical learning difficulties and dyscalculia, hence it is difficult to identify via a single diagnostic test. Diagnosis and assessment should use a range of measures, a test protocol, to identify which factors are creating problems for the learner. Although on-line tests can be of help, understanding the difficulties will be better achieved by an individual person-to-person diagnostic, clinical interview.

We use a multi-sensory approach to address the student’s limited number sense , reinforce basic math skills and remediate them systematically. The individualised interventions are designed for those who struggle to learn maths:

  • The remediation explains maths from the basics and fosters understanding and confidence in using maths.
  • The multisensory approach is evidence based and recognised by international experts
  • Instruction uses manipulatives and clear visuals to illustrate and apply concepts.
  • Remedial activities are simple and clearly structured so that students find a way around the difficulties they previously experienced.
  • Maths concepts are taught through various multisensory pathways (kinaesthetic, visual) and conceptually linked to underlying core maths concepts. This allows student to connect complex concepts to core concepts.
  • Remedial intervention follows a developmentally logical sequence and links various concepts that allow understanding and help memorising of basic facts.
  • Instead of learning by rote, students develop an understanding of maths concepts and become aware of trouble spots. This enables students to analyse their errors, see similarities and apply their knowledge across maths areas.
  • KeyMath-3 ER is a comprehensive math intervention program directly linked to theKeyMath-3 DA. It is patterned after the National Council for Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) content and process standards. The Program is designed to remediate Math skills of reluctant and dyscalculic learners. Each lesson contains three to four structured activities that promote conceptual problem-solving strategy
  • Multisensory Math uses concrete manipulative to illustrate new concepts. Manipulatives are used by the students because of how much they are supported by research as an effective way of creating associations from concrete to abstract.
  • Diagnostic Teaching is embedded within the teacher’s regular instruction. Unlike traditional assessments that usually take place at the end of the lesson, diagnostic teaching offers more opportunities for teachers to monitor student learning. This feedback system also assesses the effectives of the teaching instruction. This approach zeroes in on error analysis and remediation.