Some students reverse letters and words, which causes a difficult time with reading and spelling. Other kids reverse numbers, which affects math.
Some kids do both, which causes a lot of problems as far as learning goes.
If you have a child who is reversing numbers, it is overwhelming when you try to explain math. But before you get frustrated, take a peak inside of your child's brain. Can you imagine trying to add or subtract when the numbers and columns are moving? Can you imagine trying to multiply and divide when you start out seeing a number 9 and the next time you look at it, it's a 6?
One of our many activities that helps students overcome dyscalculia. By using color, touch, and an auditory component, students quickly learn not only multiplication facts, but correct number formation.
This is what these kids are up against, and the real travesty occurs with the amount of help these kids are getting. Telling them to try harder and do the problem over is not going to fix how they perceive numbers. Having them do forty problems for extra practice will not help them, especially when the numbers keep changing in their brains. Adding work only adds to their problem.
Yet, it is still important for them to learn to do math. Brain exercises help. The images must hold still in their minds for math to work. Also, they must be able to access the left hemisphere of the brain where the math work is done. If the numbers are bouncing around in the right hemisphere of their brains, then how will they ever learn to do math?
We always have kids with dyscalculia use colored markers on plain white paper when we do math. Why? Because the color keeps the right side of their brains busy as well as helps them to focus on the number and not the process. It is when they are focused on the process that the numbers start going haywire in their brains. Once the number is on paper in color, then they can begin to think about the process. Doing both at the same time is overwhelming for them.
Students can be taught to do math, even if they have dyscalculia. It takes a knowledge of the brain and a different approach to teaching and practicing, but it can be done.