Science-- there's something for everyone

Monday, July 11, 2011


Most people are familiar with the learning disability known as dyslexia, which affects people’s ability to read and spell. However, you may not have heard of ‘dyscalculia’, which has an equally devastating effect on one’s ability to process numbers. In fact, the number of people suffering from dyscalculia may be the same as those with dyslexia, even though there are few guidelines for helping students overcome this handicap.

Like dyslexia, dyscalculia appears to be a hereditary disease that patients are born with. Also like dyslexic people, dyscalculic learners have a specific brain abnormality that can be compensated for by specialized teaching methods.

Wondering whether dyscalculia could be the explanation for some of your math grades? Here are a few signs to look for, with thanks to Jeff Foxworthy.
  • If you need to count the symbols on two dice or playing cards to know which is larger, you may be dyscalculic.
  • If you can’t count down from ten without first counting up, you may be dyscalculic.
  • If you guess that a normal room is about 200 feet high, you may be dyscalculic.