So, i just did a search of dyscalculia while bored because well.. I do things like that. I'll start by telling you all about my difficulties and such.. Well, in primary, the entire class was made to stand up and chant our times tables so we would remember them better.. And every time we did it i always had to mumble along, hoping the teacher woulnt notice. I never understood why i couldnt "get it" like the other children, and the maths homework was even worse, i would sit at the kitchen table and cry through hours and hours of seemingly simple problems which were a completely different language to me. My parents accused me of attention seeking, not paying attention in class or just not being interested which resulted in even more tears, i felt like a failure and that nobody understood me. I left primary with a basic understanding of 1+1=2 but not much else, telling the time was alien, as was fractions, times tables and phone numbers. Also, because i was above average in all of my other subjects i was placed in an average level maths class.. Which resulted in me shrinking into myself during classes, trying my best but seriously not getting anywhere, being mocked by my classmates during peer marking where i regularly scored zero out of twenty. I was soon approached by my teacher, told to put more effort in, given extra homework which never got finished because i had panic attacks halfway through and my parents were contacted multiple times. Eventually, after 10 years of being in education and struggling i begged my mum to let me have a test my teacher had reccommended, i was tested and got the diagnoses of dyscalculia, much to my relief! However after that, nothing much happened.. I was dropped out of maths classes, and given extra study sessions instead, no help was offered and i still feel like 8 year old me, crying at the kitchen table with my maths homework disgarded. Every time i encounted 24 hour time i panic, call someone close to me and ask them what it means, even if i've asked the exact same question hundreds of times before, it seems that i just forget the information as soon as i dont need it at that point in time. Anyway.. Im here basically to see what my options are, are there courses at college you can take that are spesifically designed for those with number difficulties? Im in the UK, if that helps thank you for existing..
Location: Texas USA Posts: 6102 Joined: 2008-05-25
Hi Malteaser19. Welcome here. I'd barely started reading your post and you already had me chuckling out loud. The part where you said that while everybody else was chanting their times tables, you would "mumble along, hoping the teacher wouldn't notice". Priceless!
Oh yeah, and the old 'put more effort' advice,... If we all had a nickle for the times we've heard that!
I think that what you've said about forgetting the things that we don't immediately need 'at that point in time' is true and very important. I am able to tell time, so when I see where a fellow dyscalculic has trouble with this (and knowing what a useful thing it is to be able to tell time), then this is one of those times when I wish that I had a way to give just a little personal help. I feel like I'm inside the problem 'with' you, rather than trying to teach it 'at' you. I also think that when there is something to be learned that we don't just 'pick up on', those are the things that we most need an empathetic teacher to learn from. When we get a teacher with even the slightest twinge of hostility, sarcasm, or condescension, that amplifies our discomfort with the material and we don't soon forget the experience.
I don't know about math courses in the UK, of course. However, here in the US, our forum member RottieWoman got to take a special math course that had just she and one other person in it, and she passed it. So, there's hope for you, too,... that someone may understand what you are up against. Here in the US, students may have to be re-tested after three years in order to keep getting accommodations. Do you know if your test is still valid for the school system?
One of these days, when I get some extra cash, I may get Skype into the UK, and then I would try to help you a little with your math. I can do arithmetic, but when I get to algebra, I rare up and stop like a horse that won't jump the gate. - jus'
Edited by justfoundout on August 12 2012 12:07 AM
Thank you for your reply i've been reading through the forums, and am massivly relieved, i had no idea how much dyscalculia was affecting my life but i had no idea of it till i read about other people having the same problems. For example, panic attacks, on a regular basis ill have a panic attack, possibly once every two days on average. They can be about anything, but mostly new situations (like starting college, i had a massive attack about that last night when i started to overthink things) and when i need to think quickly about maths or even just remembering small details in every day life. Also, when people shout at me, i panic, i believe this is a result of being told off in school and at home for being disinterested in maths and homework, the panicing is a kind of flashback to that time
Haha, im glad i made you laugh part of coping with my LD is light humour, it makes me feel less anxious about situations if people are laughing with me, not at me
I know exactly what you mean about having an empathetic teacher helping, in secondary school i had a history teacher with a son who has aspergers, so when i told her i have dyscalculia she instantly connected with me, she ended up giving me extra help and just being my friend, so i wouldnt feel so alone. I honestly believe that if she hadn't been at the school, then i wouldn't have been able to cope.
I've been debating whether to tell the college that im going to start attending on the 16th of this month that i have dyscalculia, my course is a beauty therapy course so hopefully there will be no number crunching, but i would like to possibly enrole in a night class so i could get a pass in foundation maths (foundation is pretty much the lowest secondary school level maths you can get here, i failed it, even with a calculator in the non calculator exam.) i may have to think more on the matter of telling my college, because i dont want to be treated differently, but i do need help.
Im not sure if we need to be retested in the UK, ill ask my mum, she handles all that sort of stuff. If i do need to be retested in order to get help then id gladly oblige.
You are very kind, and you've touched me with your offer of help, if one day you do get skype, you must let me know right now, i can do very basic arithmatic with the help of my fingers, but most commonly a calculator, but, a bit like you, anything beyond that is far too much for me to handle
Location: Texas USA Posts: 6102 Joined: 2008-05-25
I enjoyed reading your second post, too,... even though I didn't get to laugh at anything. :-) Yes, as soon as I get my student loan for the coming semester, I may look around for the cheapest internet service that I can get, and then add skype to it. The kind of math that you didn't pass is what I'm (gratefully) able to do, and this is the reason that I'd like to help you. About 10 years ago, before I knew about dyscalculia, I had a neighbor who had lost her job and was awarded funding for a two year degree. All she had to do was pass some basic math, which included adding and multiplying fractions. Her score wasn't high enough and, because of this, she was going to miss out on two years worth of free education. She would have a second chance to take the test two weeks later. I took my High School level math CD's to her house, and most importantly, I took my fabric tape measure that I use for sewing. We sat together looking at the CD's on her computer, and with the help of folding and unfolding that tape measure, and her actually 'counting' every tiny line on the tape measure until she was 'convinced', she was able to 'see' fractions for the first time ever. Once she caught onto what we were trying to accomplish, she was happy and excited. Of course, she's also very intelligent in everything but math. At some point, about an hour into our session, she told me that she'd understood, that she would keep going with the CD's, and that I could go home. And that's just what she did. When she went back to re-take the test, she passed. And she said that the test center lady said, "Wow! You've really improved." And then, of course, came the words that made me so happy, she said that she told the woman, "My neighbor. She taught it to me. I couldn't have done it without her." So this is the reason that, even though I don't like doing math, I would still try to teach it to you,... just for the fun of watching you suceed. - jus'
Edited by justfoundout on August 12 2012 08:48 PM
I was diagnosed in college after continually failing remedial college math. I tend to think in pictures. I have issues with compass directions, multiple-step oral directions/sequence, Left and Right, spatial orientation, telling time and money - didn't learn how to count money or tell time til about high school. Don't know how to use a ruler. In any and all math classes I was always afraid of being called on and hated going to the board! I also hated gym or physical education most times and at certain points simply refused to play, which just got me in trouble. I didn't understand the rules and patterns of most of the team playground sports and dances <in gym class> that other students picked up quickly.
Due to the diagnosis when I was at my university, I was able to take a specific math class that was not listed anywhere in the catalogs and was only for people diagnosed with learning disabilities or dyscalculia <not sure how specific the requirement was anymore>. It was me and one other student in it and it went on my transcript as what is called here a "General Degree Requirement" that fulfilled my math requirement overall for the university - though it DID NOT fulfill the math requirement for one of my majors, which was Sociology. I still had to take Statistics for that major and would have flunked it royally had the elderly professor not been kind. He also graded much on attendance and notebook notes <I've always taken good notes in things even in the math notes I took made no sense to me at all>.
He also totally forgot to have us do a major statistical project toward the end of the semester that was technically a requirement in the Stats department for the students - and which my friends in classes taught by other teachers, had to do - but again, my prof. forgot to assign this big project to us - which was based on all we'd learned in the year and was basically an independent statistical analysis project. As I understood nothing, I wouldn't have been able to complete this project had he given it.
My university accommodations based on diagnosis included: un-timed, isolated testing in math classes, priority registration, use of special calculator purchased by DVR-Vocational Rehabilitation- access to tutors and classes not available to the general student population, test proctors if I needed them, which I didn't, and other things.
Edited by RottieWoman on August 15 2012 01:57 PM
Hey there,I was just wondering if anybody could recommend like an online testing for Dyscalculia or something similar,i seriously need it :/
My parents have never believed my dyscalculia from day one,saying i was just lazy and blah-di-blah....
But its getting to the point where im cutting myself,my class and school all tease me for getting 0's,and I seriously think there's no point in wasting valuable GCSE time on stupid math,so im hoping to skip math class,or at least have extra help or something...
Thankss everybodyyy xoxo