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15 minute forums are a popular way of sharing key information with staff over either a working lunch or after school.

They do not impede on lots of time and allow staff to grasp key concepts/information, quickly and concisely.

James-

The word Dyscalculia come from the Greek “dys” meaning “badly” and the Latin “calculia” which means “to count”. So in simple terms it means “to count badly”.

Amjad-

A discussion of dyscalculia must first establish if it is accepted as a learning difficulty.

Therefore it is important to define what a learning difficulty is: A learning difficulty is defined as having “Significant difficulties in the acquisition and use of listening, speaking, reading, writing, reasoning, or mathematical abilities” (National Joint Committee on Learning Disabilities. 1994, pp. 65.)

James-

First line:

The term Dyscalculia dates back to at least 1949, Wikipedia.org (accessed 2015) and was first recognised by the DfES in the UK in 2001, Bird (2013). It was defined as:

'A condition that affects the ability to acquire mathematical skills. Dyscalculic learners may have difficulty understanding simple number concepts, lack an intuitive grasp of numbers, and have problems learning number facts and procedures. Even if they produce a correct answer or use a correct method, they may do so mechanically and without confidence.’ (DfES 2001). It is defined as a SpLD along with dyslexia and dyspraxia in the 2014 SEND Code of Practice DfE & DoH (2014), within the broad area of need; ‘cognition and learning’.

Amjad-

Dyscalculia is a distinct learning difficulty although it is often comorbid with dyslexia and ADHD, Shalev (2004). About 25% of children with dyscalculia will also have dyslexia or ADHD.

James-

A number of studies have looked at the rate of occurrence of dyscalculia. These put the frequency between 6 and 8% of the population. It affects girls and boys equally.

Geary (2004) 5 - 8%

Desoete et al (2004) 3 - 8%

Butterworth (2002) 5 - 6%

Kosc (1974) 6.4%

Gross-Tsur et al (1996) 6.5%

Amjad-

It is believed that unlike reading, children are born with a natural ability to acquire number skills such as counting, adding, comparing and understanding quantities, Ginsburg HP (1997) in Shalev (2004), but for the dyscalculic, this natural development does not occur in the timeframes expected.

Mathematics is a hierarchical subject with many topics depending on the pre-acquisition of others. For example, learning written methods for addition and subtraction is not likely to be successful without a clear understanding of place value. Diagnosing and addressing gaps in learning is key to progress. Use the diagnostic tests mentioned earlier and address these during maths lessons or interventions.

Design of the maths scheme of work to include regular opportunities to return to topics, frequent revision (of number work in particular) through the use of starters and regular practice of number facts such as multiplications and number bonds to help speed of recall.

Piaget explained the stages of cognitive attainment moving from the concrete to pictorial to abstract and symbolic. At times in secondary school we assume learners have moved to the abstract before they have. Many believe that equipment should be used universally to aid understanding. This approach also removes the stigma of equipment being seen as a ‘babyish’ activity. Cuisenaire rods, Dienes Blocks (base 10 blocks) and the use of money can help with place value, Chinn (2012). Ground concepts in real-life experiences is also helpful. For example, when teaching negative numbers, use lift buttons or thermometer scales

Chinn suggests multiplication squares being available to students with dyscalculia. My school has introduced Numeracy guides that can be found on every desk throughout the school (insert picture of DGS numeracy guides).

Extra time in maths exams may be appropriate due to the slow processing speed or poor working memory, NIACE (2009).

Always bear in mind that students with dyscalculia can improve, Varni (unknown date)

Source: http://www.bdadyslexia.org.uk/dyslexic/dyscalculia

Reflective questions on whether these are in fact common traits or will they be able to be specifically viewed?

Dyscalculium- https://shop.tribalgroup.co.uk/vmchk/Assessment-screening/DyscalculiUM.html

GL assessment- http://www.gl-assessment.co.uk/products/dyscalculia-screener

Example report- http://www.acer.edu.au/documents/sample_reports/Dyslexia-Dyscalculia-Sample-Report.pdf

The Dyscalculia Centre- http://www.dyscalculia.me.uk/testing.html

Primary assessment- http://www.bloomsbury.com/uk/the-dyscalculia-assessment-9781441140852/

Lots of research about the adult brain and its processing ability of numbers. Not so much about Children.

Most tests are clunky and time consuming.

They result in a diagnostic assessment, separating key areas of difficulties. The GL assessment also provides a parental report.

No official screening tool.

Will be recognised as a SpLD

Schools not obliged to do this- as they do not all test for Dyslexia.

Example of an american report- http://www.dyscalculia.org/diagnosis-legal-matters/guidance-17-years-old/sample-report

Schools are expected to teach maths (along with reading, writing and communication) in a planned and cohesive way across the curriculum. Ofsted (2015). Quick recall of basic numeracy facts may be missing. Access to a table square in subjects where calculations are required would be helpful. Use of a numeracy guide or mat for all students in all lessons will help students. Their universal use will remove the stigma of singling out the child with dyscalculia.

Children with dyscalculia may develop a fixed mindset characterised by self talk such as “I’m too stupid to do maths”, “I can’t do any maths”, “I’ll never be able to do maths” – Chinn (2012). This can lead to poor learning behaviours borne out of frustration or in an attempt to mask their difficulties.

Design of the maths scheme of work to include regular opportunities to return to topics, frequent revision (of number work in particular) through the use of starters and regular practice of number facts such as multiplications and number bonds to help speed of recall.

Piaget explained the stages of cognitive attainment moving from the concrete to pictorial to abstract and symbolic. At times in secondary school we assume learners have moved to the abstract before they have. Many believe that equipment should be used universally to aid understanding. This approach also removes the stigma of equipment being seen as a ‘babyish’ activity. Cuisenaire rods, Dienes Blocks (base 10 blocks) and the use of money can help with place value, Chinn (2012). Ground concepts in real-life experiences is also helpful. For example, when teaching negative numbers, use lift buttons or thermometer scales

Chinn suggests multiplication squares being available to students with dyscalculia. My school has introduced Numeracy guides that can be found on every desk throughout the school (insert picture of DGS numeracy guides).

Extra time in maths exams may be appropriate due to the slow processing speed or poor working memory, NIACE (2009).

Always bear in mind that students with dyscalculia can improve, Varni (unknown date)

http://www.helpingwithmath.com/resources/wor-dyscalculia.htm -->Useful website.

Vital to ensure the learning objectives are intertwined with teaching style to determine access.

http://www.nationalnumeracy.org.uk/resources/93/index.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dyscalculia, accessed 22/03/2015

Lots of websites will be referenced on school toolkit- bit.ly/agilitytoolkit

References:

Bird, R (2013) The Dyscalculia Toolkit: Supporting Learning Difficulties in Maths. Sage, London

Chinn, S (2012) The Trouble with Maths. Routledge, Abingdon

Chinn, S (2012) More Trouble with Maths. Routledge, Abingdon

Desoete, A., Roeyers, H. & De Clercq, A. (2004) Children with Mathematics Learning Disabilities in Belgium, Journal of Learning Disabilities, 37, pp. 50-61.

DfE & DoH (Department for Education & Department of Health) (2014) Special Educational Needs and Disability Code of Practice: 0 to 25 years. July 2014. London: Department for Education and Department for Health

DfES (2001) The National Numeracy Strategy, Guidance to support pupils with dyslexia and dyscalculia, accessed online at http://www.secondarymathsite.co.uk/Inclusion/SEN/nns_dyslexia051201.pdf on 22/03/2015, Department for Education and Skills, UK

Geary DC (2004) Mathematics and Learning Disabilities. Journal of Learning Disabilities 37 (1) pp. 4-15

Ginsburg, H P (1997) Mathematics learning disabilities: A view from developmental psychology. Journal of Learning Disabilities ; 30, pp. 20–33.

Gross-Tsur, V., Manor,O. and Shalev R.S. (1996) Developmental Dyscalculia: prevalence and demographic features. Developmental Medicine and Child Neurology. 38, pp. 25-33

NIACE (2009) Dyscalculia and access arrangements for exams and assessments, NAICE Briefing Sheet 87, accessed online at www.niace.org.uk/sites/default/files/87-Dyscalculia.pdf on 22/03/2015, National Institute of Adult Continuing Education.

Kosc, L (1974) Developmental Dyscalculia. Journal of Learning Disabilities 7 (3) pp. 164-177

Ofsted (2014) School inspection handbook. Manchester

Shalev, R (2004) Developmental Dyscalculia. Journal of Child Neurology. 19 (10) pp. 765

Varni, K (unknown) Confronting the myth of dyscalculia: taking “I can’t” out of the equation, accessed online at http://pc.parnu.ee/~htooman/EuroChrie/Welcome%20to%20EuroCHRIE%20Dubai%202008/papers/Confronting%20the%20myth%20of%20dyscalculia%20taking%20I%20can%E2%80%99t%20out%20of%20the%20equation.pdf on 22/03/2015

- 1. Please download the slides. All references and links are in the footnotes/notes sections.
- 2. An introduction to Dyscalculia Amjad Ali- @ASTSupportAAli James Shryane - @James_Shryane 25/03/15
- 3. 15 minute forum #1 • This a lunch time drop in training session as part of our 15 minute forum package. • Aim- An introduction to dyscalculia • Audience – Teachers and teaching assistants in secondary school • Learning Outcome – By the end of the session, teachers and TAs will be able to describe dyscalculia and have an appreciation that it is a condition relevant to all staff in the context of teaching mathematics across the curriculum.
- 4. What is Dyscalculia? • A Specific Learning Difficulty within Cognition & Learning, recognised in the 2014 SEND Code of Practice • Often comorbid with dyslexia and ADHD but they are separate conditions • Affects 6-8% of people, girls and boys equally
- 5. Key difficulties... • Poor understanding/confusion of mathematical symbols • Difficulties with position and direction • Difficulty with sequencing, remembering specific facts and formulae, decoding, memory • Maths phobia • Mathematical capacity significantly lower than in other areas such as verbal/written ability • Difficulty with abstract concepts such as time, always late • Difficulty reading numbers • Poor maths long term memory
- 6. Assessment methods
- 7. Not just Maths • Numeracy, not just mathematics • Schools are expected to teach maths in a planned and cohesive way across the curriculum • Anxiety and poor self image
- 8. Tips and Strategies • Find the gaps and address them • Regular returns, frequent revision • Use of concrete manipulatives (equipment) • Exam access arrangements • Reduce anxiety
- 9. Further Reading
- 10. Dyscalculia Spatial/ Temporal Memory Counting Calculations Numbers Measures 123

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