Symptoms of Dyscalculia
Preschool and Kindergarten
There are often early signs of dyscalculia even in preschool and kindergarten. Let’s go through those first. Here they are:
- A difficulty remembering the names of numbers?
- Trouble learning to count
- Trouble learning to count by two’s or threes
- Can count, but when counting objects makes mistakes
- Difficulty recognizing numbers. They may see 2’s as z’s
- May not understand that numbers stand for quantities
- May not understand the concept of more or less
- Difficulty with patterns such as smallest to largest or shortest to tallest
- May Avoid games that use numbers or dice
- May not understand that the symbol for a number and it’s written version are the same thing. In other words, the number 2 and the word two
- Just doesn’t seem to have number sense
In elementary school, dyscalculia becomes more obvious. Here are the signs you may see in elementary school:
- A difficulty lining up numbers when solving math problems
- Difficulty remembering addition and subtraction facts such as 2 plus 2 equals 4
- Mixes up math symbols such as the plus sign and the multiplication symbol
- Is still using fingers to count
- Struggles with math concepts such as greater than or less than
- Struggles with size concepts such as bigger and smaller or longer and shorter
- Struggles with time concepts such as before and after
- Struggles with position concepts such as right and left or over and under
- Has a difficulty learning to read the time on an analog clock
- Difficulty with time concepts such as “If it’s now 1:30 how long until it is 2 o’clock?”
- Has a difficulty learning coordination sequences such as dance moves
- Has math anxiety
- Guesses at math answers
- Loses place when counting by numbers
- Has to constantly relearn math concepts
- Can’t remember times tables
- Has difficulty with organization
- Has a difficulty understanding calendars
- Math just seems like a foreign language
- Has trouble measuring ingredients for a recipe
High School and Adult
Once a dyscalculic is in High school or is an adult, things get even worse. Here are the signs of dyscalculia in older children or adults.
- Difficulty remembering phone numbers or dates or addresses
- Difficulty with money. This can show up when counting back change. Or a difficulty with budgeting or finances. Or splitting a restaurant bill between friends. Or even tipping
- Difficulty with directions on a map
- Difficulty following instructions
- Difficulty understanding graphs and charts
- Difficulty estimating distances and speeds. This probably won’t get you out of a speeding ticket but you can try.
- A difficulty estimating how long a task will take. Or estimating time in any way. This may show up as always being late
- Skipping over numbers when reading
If any of these are problems you or your child are experiencing then do our free deep dive dyscalculia screener.
And if your child is struggling in school, whether it’s dyscalculia or not, start them on a free trial of the Learning Success System because you’ll want to get them back on track as quickly as possible.
Do You Need help with a Dyscalculia Difficulty?
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Understanding how to help someone with a learning difficulty starts with understanding which micro-skills are affected. When you learn which of the micro-skills is the problem, you will then be on your way to solving it.
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- Build confidence
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- Eliminate avoidance
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