Research by the Dyscalculia Centre, which has been published in SEN Magazine, has shown that there are five different types of dyscalculia – although inevitably many young people suffer from a combination of the types listed below.
Type 1 dyscalculics report significant worries about maths. As a result they feel themselves living in an alien world in which everyone else can grasp maths, but they can’t. Self-doubt becomes so strong that it gets increasingly difficult to persuade the individual that with proper support they might well be able to undertake and understand mathematical calculations.
Type 2 dyscalculics also experience this deep concern but have found strategies for understanding and coping with basic maths – yet they feel that they don’t have the automatic grasp that others have and often take twice as much time (or more) to do a maths problem as a non-dyscalculic person.
Type 3 students have a profound difficulty in comprehending and dealing with the concept of time. Sometimes this issue appears on its own, sometimes in combination with types 1 or 2 dyscalculia. For such people time itself makes no sense and they are quite unable to estimate “five minutes” or any other time length while questions about timetables and the like are also quite meaningless.
Type 4 dyscalculics may not always be dyscalculic in the genetic sense, although they display many of the symptoms of dyscalculic people because they have short-term and long-term memory problems. These students generally have a problem with all sequences – and this, of course, affects their ability to handle maths perhaps more than any other subject.
Type 5 dyscalculics tend not to see numbers as in any way related to the real world. In one sense most of us have this problem; after all, what is “six”? We know what six sheep are. But “six” on its own is close to meaningless. For such people, maths can be learned automatically, but when it gets to issues such as fractions, decimals, and percentages then life gets difficult.
Fortunately all these types of dyscalculics can be helped through different types of multi-sensory learning of maths, and this is the approach we have set out in our series: “Dyscalculia Activities”
Each volume contains a vast array of activities which a teacher or assistant teacher can undertake with a small group of students, and involves turning the abstract concepts of maths into physical experiences. No special equipment is needed, apart from paper, scissors, small cards and some ludo type counters. (We can supply the cards and counters if you don’t already have them).
Each printed volume is copiable, and so only one copy is needed per school.
There are details here including sample pages
- Dyscalculia Activities 1: Addition, subtraction, multiplication, division http://www.dyscalculia.me.uk/teacher.html#5
- Dyscalculia Activities 2: Shapes, fractions, percentages. http://www.dyscalculia.me.uk/teacher.html#9
- Dyscalculia Activities 3: Time and Timetables: http://www.dyscalculia.me.uk/teacher.html#8
- Cards and counters for use with above books: http://www.dyscalculia.me.uk/teacher.html#6
If you have any enquiries please do call 01536 399 000 or email Tony@schools.co.uk
You can place orders on line (there is a link from each of the above resource pages) or you can go straight to the on-line shop here http://shop.firstandbest.co.uk/index.php?cPath=29 You can also order by post and fax:
- By post to First and Best, Hamilton House, Earlstrees Ct., Earlstrees Way, Corby, NN17 4HH
- By fax to 01536 399 012