Has your child been diagnosed with dyscalculia or do you suspect your child may have it? We can help.
Our targeted dyscalculia tutoring uses effective dyscalculia strategies to ensure success in maths. We thoroughly assess for gaps in your child’s knowledge then carefully plan structured, cumulative steps to address those gaps.
What is dyscalculia?
Dyscalculia is a learning difficulty with numbers. It is a specific difficulty in understanding numbers that affects the ability to acquire mathematical skills.
Students with dyscalculia may have difficulties with number sense, understanding and using mathematical concepts, language and symbols, and memorising and applying number facts and procedures.
Students may also:
- Have difficulty when counting backwards.
- Have a poor sense of number and estimation.
- Have difficulty in remembering ‘basic’ facts, despite many hours of practice/rote learning.
- Have no strategies to compensate for lack of recall, other than to use counting.
- Have difficulty in understanding place value and the role of zero.
- Have no sense of whether any answers that are obtained are right or nearly right.
- Be slower to perform calculations.
- Forget mathematical procedures, especially as they become more complex, for example ‘long’ division. Addition is often the default operation. The other operations are usually very poorly executed (or avoided altogether).
- Avoid tasks that are perceived as difficult and likely to result in a wrong answer.
- Have weak mental arithmetic skills.
- Have high levels of mathematics anxiety.
How we have helped others
“Kristy has been a “sliding doors moment” for our 9yo ADHD/Dyslexic/Dyscalculia daughter.
I can speak to the obvious, which is that our daughter instantly warmed to her, engages SO well during the sessions, learns so much, and feels celebrated at every point throughout her sessions with Kristy.
But the happy side bonus to all of that? Kristy teaches in a way that celebrates differently wired brains, not just through Kristy’s natural ability to do so … but because she has dedicated her career [and studied extensively re: differently wired kids] to teaching our kids information they *want* to know [but can’t always understand in a mainstream setting].
And the happiest side bonus from all of that? Our daughter has gone from being told she may need to repeat her grade, to now being in the top 3% of her grade [we cried when we received her school report].
Kristy has been the best investment for our little family: we don’t care for “top 3%” type stuff to be honest — all we wanted was for our daughter’s self-esteem to improve, and for her to stop coming home from school in TEARS and saying “I am so dumb” and “I hate myself” [heartbreaking and heartwrenching for ANY parent].
Thanks to Kristy, she now realises she’s different, NOT less [and simply learns differently to others].
We have our happy little girl back, and she is such an engaged learner, and understands maths in a way that celebrates her unique brain 🙂“
Mother of 9 year old child with Dyscalculia
Specialist dyscalculia tutoring
Our aim is for your child to develop a solid understanding of numbers and their relationships.
Our targeted dyscalculia tutoring starts with explicit instruction. We teach new procedures and strategies explicitly, and we break every skill up into small, incremental steps. This ensures that the foundations are secure at every stage.
Once your child’s counting skills are secure, we teach your child calculation strategies that move away from counting in ones. We work on ‘chunking’ or building numbers in different ways and splitting numbers up in different ways. This will allow your child to fully understand addition and subtraction and the connection between these concepts.
Times tables are taught not by rote, but by starting with Cuisenaire rods to create ‘area’ models. This approach connects multiplication with division right from the start, is easy to visualise, and helps your child to understand what each times table means. Your child will explore and internalise key times tables facts, and then be taught how to obtain other facts by reasoning from those key facts. This strategy reduces memory load and promotes deep understanding.
Mental maths is a strong component of our sessions. We explicitly teach your child to perform maths tasks by visualising number lines or diagrams in their heads.
We also teach the language of mathematics. We work on patterns, sequencing, and grouping to help your child count and understand place value.
Looking for ways to help your child at home? Read about these online maths manipulatives that can help children with maths difficulties.
Multi-sensory maths tutoring
Although dyscalculia presents differently in every individual, many are likely to have anxiety and low self-esteem around maths. At Forging Roots Education we use multi-sensory teaching strategies that increase motivation and engagement to build confidence and decrease frustration levels.
We link maths to situations that are familiar and relevant to students and use concrete materials such as Cuisenaire rods, Numicon, base 10 blocks, bead bars and dominoes to provide practical experience. We only remove these concrete materials when your child is secure in their understanding.
From there we move to using pictorial models such as number lines, tracks, diagrams and bar models to reinforce learning and provide the ‘bridge’ between the concrete and abstract equations.
We allow time for practice, application, consolidation and generalisation.
Bird, R. (2021). The Dyscalculia Toolkit (4th Ed). Corwin.
Get In Touch
Kristy (B.Ed, M.A) is a qualified and highly experienced special needs teacher who has over 18 years of teaching experience in the U.K and Melbourne, Australia. Kristy specialises in teaching students with learning difficulties such as neurodiverse students and students with neurological disorders. She also specialises in teaching neurotypical children with difficulties in literacy and mathematics.
Working with Children Check: 2129452A-01
Australian Tutoring Association (ATA) membership number: 20210032