The Effects of Dyslexia on Math Education

Dyslexia causes children to struggle with reading. Surprisingly, dyslexia can also affect a child's math abilities. Read on to learn more about this condition and how you can help your child to succeed in spite of it.

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Dyslexia is known as a learning disability that affects people's ability to read and to comprehend written language. Dyslexia also affects other aspects of people's lives, including their mathematical abilities.

Studies show that approximately 60% of dyslexics have problems with math. Often, this is misdiagnosed as another learning difficulty called dyscalculia. Dyscalculia is quite rare and individuals diagnosed as possessing this disorder are often actually dyslexic. There are treatments and therapies available to dyslexic individuals seeking to improve their mathematical skills.

Math Vocabulary and Symbols

Many dyslexics have problems comprehending the vocabulary and symbols used in mathematics. It is also a common problem for these students to confuse math symbols that look similar. Likewise, dyslexics often reverse numbers, which can lead to errors when performing simple calculations and arithmetic.

Specific vocabulary that refers to quantities and spatial placement tend to create problems for dyslexic students. These include words and phrases such as before, after, more than, less than, and between. It is difficult for dyslexic students to understand the meaning of such words in relation to mathematics.

Word problems combine all of the concepts of math that traditionally confuse dyslexics (decoding, vocabulary comprehension, patterns, and symbols). Students who have problems with math can best compute word problems by breaking the question down into more manageable chunks.

Helping Your Dyslexic Child with Math

One-on-one instruction is essential for all children - especially those with learning difficulties. Create a set study time after school when you'll be available to help your student with homework.

Professional tutoring is also a useful resource for many dyslexics. Professional programs are now available online. Internet tutoring centers are as professional as their traditional counterparts and use the same proven methods.

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