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Dyscalculia: More Than a Math Struggle


Many students struggle with school because of learning disorders. While one of the most well-known is dyslexia — a learning disorder that makes it challenging for students to learn how to read — a lesser known, but equally severe, disorder called dyscalculia challenges some students around learning math skills. While many students find math challenging, people who struggle with dyscalculia have a marked difficulty learning how to compute and solve mathematical problems and retaining that information.

What Is Dyscalculia?

Dyscalculia is a specialized learning disorder that affects a student's ability to learn or retain math skills. The disorder presents itself in a range of ways, including an inability to memorize number-based facts, difficulty understanding the logical steps needed to solve a math problem and aversion to completing numerical daily tasks like telling time, scheduling appointments or calculating finances. The severity of dyscalculia varies among those afflicted. Some students may only be affected by math and dyscalculia in the classroom while others may find the learning disorder affects their interactions with numerical concepts throughout their lives.

How Does Dyscalculia Affect a Child's Life?

Children with dyscalculia find learning math in the classroom particularly difficult. They have trouble adding and subtracting, memorizing times tables and tackling more challenging word problems. Also, the learning disorder presents many challenges that affect a student's daily life beyond the classroom walls. School-age children with dyscalculia often have trouble memorizing symbols, making it difficult for them to remember the meaning of signs and signals such as stop signs. They also tend to be chronically late, since it is difficult for them to learn how to tell time or read a watch. Finally, children with the learning disorder struggle with strategy games that their classmates enjoy; sufferers often have trouble playing childhood games like chess, checkers or card games.

Dyscalculia can make life and learning more difficult for a child. However, children with dyscalculia can learn how to tackle math in a way that works for them. With individual help for dyscalculia, specialized instruction and dedicated time, sufferers can learn to function well in a math-based world.

If your child struggles with math or has been diagnosed with dyscalculia, contact us online or find a center near you to learn more about how the Brain Balance Program can help.

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