Does your child constantly struggle with numbers? Perhaps they always need to count with their fingers or have difficulty telling time. Or cannot tell the difference between large and small quantities.
These could be signs of dyscalculia and if you notice them in your child or student it may be worthwhile to follow up with tests for math learning difficulties and perhaps a full diagnosis.
So, how do you go about getting your child tested for and, if necessary, diagnosed with dyscalculia?
Initial screenings of dyscalculia can be carried out by a specialist teacher and then they will usually make a referral to an educational psychologist who can do a full assessment ensuring that after the diagnosis you know exactly how to support your child and their needs. But your first step can be to talk with your child’s teacher if you are a parent, or with the parents if you are the teacher. It’s best in this situation to share and compare notes on how the child deals with numbers at school and in daily life and then you can discuss if the child’s school or doctor could be a resource for a referral to an educational psychologist.
Getting tested by an educational psychologist is important to discover if the child has dyscalculia or another math learning difficulty rather than simply needing extra support in math. The Psychologists can also give input as to the possibility of other learning differences, such as ADHD or dyslexia.
Research on dyscalculia is still developing and schools need to become aware of the need for greater resources for teachers, parents, and dyscalculic children. Getting a diagnosis is one step towards getting your child or student the support needed.