Thursday, February 4, 2016

Dyscalculia Not Outgrown but Learn Coping Skills

VISITOR: Will my child outgrow dyscalculia?  

TAKE CONTROL.  You will never outgrow dyscalculia, but you can conquer it by learning to take control of your own thinking, learning and responses. 

For instance, you have dyscalculia, and may not remember accurately the exit to take, so you should write it  (plus all important roads and numbers) in black Sharpie on an index card, and tape this to your dashboard for quick reference (as a backup to your phone or GPS), because exit 118 and 181 are a great deal apart! 

You get the idea! Just knowing that you're prone to make these errors, allows you to control for them.  Now you can avoid the tears and frustration of getting lost, being late, and missing important meetings.

When you didn't understand that you had a problem, you just lived in this perpetual state of confusion and with the frustration and anger that resulted.

Here's another example, instead of asking for a phone number, or for someone to repeat instructions involving directions or numbers, keep a pen and small notebook in your pocket and quickly pull it out and say, "Would you mind writing that down for me? Thanks!" 

Now you can hand your phone to someone and ask them to call themselves, or enter their contact info or write a note. The more you use these tactics, the more comfortable you are, and the more efficient and successful you become by employing strategies that increase your personal effectiveness. 

You will learn to do this for figuring discounts, sales tax and tips, and all of the other daily math tasks that can make you feel really bad because (unless you have a strategy) your brain is too slow to calculate on the spot. 

Here's another example:  You can't remember numbers, not even how much you spent on lunch yesterday, but if you have transaction text message alerts and daily balance alerts and calendar notifications and time reminders set up, you will always know what time it is and what's coming up, and it is easy to look up all the numbers in your life. 

These are all examples of strategies that can make your disability invisible to others and manageable for you. 


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