Need info on Math impairments

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Registered: 05-02-2004
Need info on Math impairments
12
Sun, 10-21-2012 - 11:29pm

I need some information, preferably books, written along the lines of "Overcoming Dyslexia" but talking about math issues.   Anyone have any recommended books for me?    My 7 almost 8 year old is having issues learning any type of math - addition, subtraction, counting, days of week, telling time...

Thanks!

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Registered: 05-02-2004
Fri, 11-09-2012 - 8:30pm
I have looked at the books for older kids. They look good for older kids who don't need a lot of practice and catch on quickly. I think my husband would have loved them. I haven't been able to look over copies of the Life of Fred for younger kids yet. So far Right Start math is going pretty well, lots of hands on...maybe a little more retention of facts but I am not sure. We are up to about lesson 24. I started from the very beginning on that because I realized he didn't know how many fingers he had on a hand...he couldn't remember and he couldn't visualize it. He does know that now, and two hands, and most facts that add to 10. But, I would like to know more about the brain and how it works for kids like him. We have an appointment to do evaluation, but they moved the first appointment from end of November to 3rd week in December. The actual eval would be after Jan 1, when it sounds like my husband is going to be 1/2 time and lose insurance. Well, maybe I can get some book suggestions anyhow from that 1st meeting.
iVillage Member
Registered: 02-17-2004
Thu, 11-08-2012 - 2:12pm

The math topic is back on the right brain boards.  The other curriculum that seems to be popular is Life of Fred.  They say it provides practical examples.  Others say it seems contrived.  May be something to look into.

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Registered: 05-02-2004
Fri, 11-02-2012 - 9:46pm
My oldest hated the puzzles and legos and such. But his double vision did have a lot to do with that. Vision therapy helped a lot. Youngest did vision therapy too, but there was less convergence issues and more other processing issues that didn't seem to improve as much as big brother did.
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Registered: 10-23-2001
Tue, 10-30-2012 - 9:00am
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iVillage Member
Registered: 02-17-2004
Sat, 10-27-2012 - 8:28pm

There is a difference between the learning skills there.  DS has opposite strengths as your DS.  Puzzles and anything with pictures is a brick wall for us.  We had the psycho-ed eval done which showed very big difference between verbal and performance sections on the IQ.  If the vision therapy doesn't work, it is likely he will be diagnosed with non-verbal learning disorder.  Wonder if you could find the opposite of that and get some leads.

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Registered: 05-02-2004
Sat, 10-27-2012 - 11:53am

Thanks for the suggestions.   They are very much like the math that we are currently doing (Right Start) which uses fingers, tally sticks and abacus.   (And yes, pennies and nickles too.)  

Part of the issue is that I think he has memory issues.   I will teach stuff, we move on to another concept, go back and the first stuff is gone.  Constant review does help.   I have noticed for a good while that he remembers much less of things in the past than my other kids do from similar ages.  

We have done work on worksheets, we have done number lines, I have a math scale, we have always done multisensory things with counting, we did flash cards with fact families.   He plays Jedi Math on his Leapster.  He does Rocket Math on the iPad.   We have spent 3 years trying to get some of the facts up to 10.  

On the other hand, if it is a puzzle, he is good at it.   He loves building things or taking them apart.   I think it uses a different section of his brain than math does, including the math of remembering the days of the week, months, birthdate, counting and facts.  

At some point here, we will get it figured out.  I have him scheduled to do an evaluation, and hopefully they will be able to tell me some best ways to get the information to stick....or say to use a calculator and be done with the frustration!   (Pretty much any accessory that adults carry now adays has a calculator!)

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Registered: 02-17-2004
Thu, 10-25-2012 - 10:48pm

I've been thinking (sorry!).  I never did really teach counting.  I focused on quantity instead.  The first number DS learned was 3 because it isn't 1 (we were also learning vocabulary and colors at the time.  I needed a way to distinguish, so we taught 1 after he understood 3).  We spent a long time on understanding three was 'how many' and not a symbol.  He asked if 3 was always 3.  I told him no.  The quantity of 3 is the same, but the word 3 is different in different countries - France, Spain, and English.  We speak English, so we call it three.  We also talked about how it was written - the symbol of 3.  This can differ as well and we talked about Roman numerals.  It helped him distinguish what 3 actually was.  Once he got this concept, the rest of the numbers just fell into place.  Since he understands math talks about groups of stuff, he can put a large number into smaller groups that he can handle.  We told him counting was just putting the numbers in order from least to most.

The next stage was teaching base 10.  This was tough.  So we did it with pennies, nickles, and dimes.  I'd ask him to make 7 cents.  There were 2 ways to do it.  He had to find one.  Usually this was with the pennies.  After he got this down, I'd have him change up.  So we'd make 7 cents as his choice. The next time we did 7 cents, he had to find a different way than the first way.  This became quite interesting when he had to make 11 cents as there were 3 ways.  But once he understood a nickle was the same as 5 pennies, then he could grasp the concept that 11 was 10 plus 1.

When we talked about adding, we again went back to 3 and added 1.  We did this with green peas.  He had 3 peas, I added 1 pea.  Then he had to say how many he had.  I'd repeat, yes 3 peas plus 1 pea equals 4 peas.  We did this with apples, oranges, and then hundreds, millions, and billions.  After he got 3 plus 1, then we worked on 2 plus 1, etc.  Then we worked on fractions.  You have 1 fourth and you add 2 fourths, how many fourths do you have (great with jelly sandwiches).  I did a lot with pattern recognition with him.

None of this was written.  I noticed my nieces and nephews could not do word problems, so I set up questions in word problem format. 

I don't know.  Does anything like that might sound like it could work?

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-17-2004
Thu, 10-25-2012 - 9:42pm

I'm glad you beat me to it.  Laughing  Figures you are on top of things! 

DS is just beginning math instruction in the school (we are doing a sort of hybrid this year and will full time HS next year).  I am shocked actually.  They don't teach the concepts at all.  It's his thing though, so I don't know any other approaches other than the one we take at home (which is how math affects his current interest).  I know it sounds strange, but DS learns by discussions.  So we talk about math and the concepts a lot.  If you have dyslexia, are math concepts easier to work in his head than on paper?  I'm sorry.  I'm reaching here.  Just trying to think of ways to reach him.  I'm happy to brainstorm with you if you like.  But it would be experimental and not a book with a direct plan.

If you figure out something that works for your son, maybe you could write a book with lesson plans on how to do it.  Since there is nothing else out there, that might be your income source.  I think people would pay a fortune to make sense of math.  Wink

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-02-2004
Wed, 10-24-2012 - 9:38pm

What I have learned from searching on Amazon, is that there is actually very little written out there for kids with math issues.   Reading seems to be the big thing, with lots of books on what to do, what is best practice, how reading issues are defined.  

Math...not so much.   Yet, there are lots of kids (and adults) with issues.   Sigh.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-02-2004
Wed, 10-24-2012 - 9:34pm
I beat you to it. I bought that when he was in kinder! It is a great program but I need more insight on ways to teach with it. For our ALE (think charter homeschool) I am technically doing Math on the Level, but I did pick up a Right Start kit for kinder. It is helping some, because it uses the abacus, but I would like some more ideas on best practice for kids with various types of disabilities. Yes, he did do vision therapy. I also have on order a book for diagnosing math disorders http://www.amazon.com/The-Dyscalculia-Assessment-Jane-Emerson/dp/1441140859/ref=pd_sim_b_5 I also have him signed up with a psychologist for an assessment for reading and math. It will be interesting to see if the book assessment and the Dr. agree! I am still leaning toward maturity...but because our financial situation may change at any time and I may need to go to work, I want to have ducks in a row if he needs to enter the school system so that he gets the help that he needs right away.

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