Elinor McNeel left college in 1972 because she struggled with math. More than 40 years later, when she enrolled in Penn State World Campus to finish her degree, she learned that what she struggled with had a name: dyscalculia. She’s since completed her associate degree this past summer and is working toward her bachelor’s degree.
The story of someone who, due to her dyscalculia, can not manage a pin code. In the US this is not a major issue as the credit and bank cards can be used at chip and signature but over in Europe, you need a special requested card from your bank and, as the story shows, not all companies accept them.
In our link for today the story about a legal secretary who got into major trouble with firm partners, due to her dyscalculia. The story suggests that no accommodations were made for her and no understanding of the partners about her condition seemed to exist.
Tammy Brennan’s daughter Pebble was diagnosed with dyscalculia (like dyslexia, only with numbers) and she wasn’t getting the support she needed in the clasroom. By the time Pebble was nine Tammy decided she would be better off taught by her mother than at the local primary school. Not only did she quit her full time job, the single mum rearranged her life to make sure Pebble was given the best chance to succeed.
Read the great story by one of the students from Dyscalculia Services
Maya Terral 2/10/2019 Dyscalculia for 24 hours I have a disability that has always been a challenge. It doesn’t restrain me physically, however it is still a thorn in my side when it comes to daily life. My disability is called dyscalculia, a math learning disability that makes number comprehension and understanding basic math concepts very difficult. Dyscalculia is not as well known as other learning disabilities like dyslexia. For someone with dyslexia, it isn’t common that they have to explain what it is to others, but dyscalculia is a different case. I barely know anyone who is familiar with dyscalculia, and personally, I do not find that fair. Dyscalculia should be given just as much attention as dyslexia and any other learning disability because it is just as much of a struggle for those who have it.
Some of the more discernible symptoms of dyscalculia are high math anxiety (which I no doubt have), trouble memorizing or remembering math facts, and lack of number sense. I also struggle with paying attention in class. The teacher will be talking and I will try to pay attention, but in my head, I am in a totally different universe and am not listening to a single word the teacher is saying. Sometimes I have to admit I zone out voluntarily, but most of the time I can’t help it because I don’t understand what I am supposed to be doing. Teachers will often try to help me by breaking down the problems to attempt to make it easier for me to understand. Many times though, it instead becomes more puzzling. Most math teachers I’ve had think that to make a problem easier to understand, they have to add an overwhelming amount of steps to it, which is the opposite of what kids like me need. When the teacher tries to explain how the problem is executed, far too many words are used and they get jumbled in my brain. I’ve been accused of not trying or not caring many times by math teachers who don’t understand what it is like to have this disability and haven’t had the training to teach math to kids with dyscalculia. Math for kids with dyscalculia happens in the right brain, not the left, which is why more words mean more confusion. Math must be more experiential and have more visual aids and real life examples to help me. Sadly all this misunderstanding, in addition to the difficulty with me grasping the concepts, automatically gives me a negative opinion of math, and probably a negative opinion of me to my math teachers.
If I had a superpower it would be the ability to give everyone in the world dyscalculia for 24 hours so they would understand the real struggles that come along with it. I hope that when those 24 hours are up, people would have a better understanding of what I and everyone else with dyscalculia are going through and that it is not something to be overlooked or disregarded as merely a dislike for math.
In our link for today the story from someone who kept her troubles with math a secret. Unfortunately our school system is such that this can go unnoticed. A major reason why Dyscalculia is not diagnosed more often. Here is how she explained getting through school without anyone noticing her math troubles:
The reason that I was never tested was that I passed all my classes with As and Bs. My parents figured that I just hated math. They assumed that I just needed to apply myself. Now the reason that I got good grades was that I copied everyone’s homework and was a great student. My test scores would give me away, but the teachers were always okay to bump up my grade or give me extra credit. I was in the honors classes track, so surely I was such a good student so eager to learn that I could not get a C grade or lower.
Read the story in the link for today where someone recall their youth that got majorly impacted by a learning disability. Best Quote:
After much hemming and hawing, I went and did a series of tests with trained doctors and teachers who told me that I had dyscalculia. Finally, I realized that my inability to not be able to perform in maths was not because I was dumb or didn’t pay attention. My brain couldn’t grasp these concepts, and it wasn’t my fault at all!
Receiving a diagnosis at the age of 19 was somewhat of a relief to me. It made me feel able to tell people what I needed help with when I was studying and also allowed me to laugh at it. I had been struggling with musical theory (particularly thinking of chords as numbers rather than the specific chord name) in my first year of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. I knew that it wasn’t a case of ‘not trying hard enough’, but that’s how itseems to tutors and if you’re told that often enough, you may start to believe it.
Over the course of the next few weeks, the not the former things website will be sharing specifics of what homeschooling with these 3 D’s looks like and all of the resources I have found to be invaluable in truly helping my children learn, just as they are. Here is a rundown of what you can expect in this series.
Week One: Homeschooling A Dyslexic Child
Week Two: Homeschooling A Child With Dysgraphia
Week Three: Homeschooling A Child With Dyscalculia
Week Four: Hands-On Activities For Homeschooling With Dyslexia, Dysgraphia and Dyscalculia
Wise words once told to me by a friend. The lady in the story for today uses a similar approach and has been able to work with her Dyscalculia using the resources she has and by asking help and keeping her Faith.