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SpLD Dyscalculia


Dyscalculia is a specific learning disability involving maths skills. It may be a difficulty with counting and calculating, understanding abstract maths concepts or working with numbers and symbols

Key Characteristics

Children with dyscalculia may have:

  • normal or above average verbal skills and good visual memory for the printed word
  • difficulty understanding maths concepts, rules and sequences, especially involving time and money
  • a tendency to make substitutions, transpositions, omissions and reversals when reading and writing numbers
  • a poor sense of direction (such as confusing left and right, getting easily lost, losing things) and time (such as often arriving late)
  • difficulty recalling names and faces
  • poor mental maths skills
  • poor coordination when involved in activities requiring change of direction, such as aerobics, exercise and dance sessions
  • difficulty with keeping score in games or working out strategies in chess.

Support Strategies

You may need to:

  • allow extra time to complete a task
  • encourage learners to make use of calculators when necessary
  • use visual and concrete materials to develop understanding of maths concepts
  • make use of ICT as an aid to learning
  • use multi-sensory teaching strategies to support the learning of new concepts
  • encourage working with a partner to explain methods of working to each other
  • incorporate practical activities into most lessons
  • allow for the need to over-learn maths concepts and rules.

Support Agencies and Links

Dyscalculia Presentation

Maths – Parents can make a difference