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Dyscalculia The Unaccounted for Disability

Dyscalculia is a learning disability that makes it hard to learn the value of numbers and do basic math. At TouchMath, we know, with the right tools, curriculum and instruction, anyone can learn math.

Dyscalculia The Unaccounted for Disability

Dyscalculia is a learning disability that makes it hard to learn the value of numbers and do basic math. At TouchMath, we know, with the right tools, curriculum and instruction, anyone can learn math.

What Is Dyscalculia

What Is Dyscalculia?

Dyscalculia is a learning disability that affects one’s ability to learn mathematics, as compared to same age peers who receive identical instruction. It may cause difficulty with counting, working memory for numbers, ability to recognize patterns, time, sense of direction, estimation of distance and volume, math facts, and procedures. Dyscalculia is a lifelong condition that can impact academic and economic progress as well as self-esteem.  


Dyscalculia can be classified as a disability under both the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which may qualify them to receive accommodations in school via an IEP.  

Dyscalculia Statistics 1 in 14 Representation

Dyscalculia Statistics

This math learning disability is prevalent in classrooms around the world, yet dyscalculia is not nearly as well-known as dyslexia.

  • Research says between 3% and 7% of students worldwide have dyscalculia. 
  • That could be in one to two students in a typical classroom.
  • 105 milion+ students globally are estimated to have this math learning disability.
  • This translates to 3 million+ students in the United States alone.


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Common Signs of Dyscalculia

While research on this math learning disability is still decades behind where it should be, we do have a better understanding of the common signs of dyscalculia. Students with dyscalculia may exhibit difficulties with one or more of the following: 

  • Number sense and quantity
  • Grasping and remembering mathematical concepts, rules, formulas, and sequences  
  • Memorizing numerical facts  
  • Performing mental math 
  • Estimating time, distance, and volume  
Dyscalculia affects students in and out of the classroo

Dyscalculia Affects Students in and out of the Classroom

Dyscalculia is more than a learning disorder that makes it difficult for students to complete mathematical computations. Without the right instructional practices and tools in place to help in the classroom, students and adults with dyscalculia may face some of the following:

Inside the Classroom
Outside the Classroom
Difficulty completing assignments
Getting lost or misreading an analog clock
Confusing order of operations
Difficulty arriving on time
Struggling to apply concepts, rules, formulas, and/or procedures
Trouble following recipes while baking and/or cooking
Difficulty using mental math during lessons, homework assignments, and/or tests
Challenges with estimating sale prices, calculating tips, and/or making change
CRA Continuum Visualized

How Does TouchMath Help Students with Dyscalculia?

TouchMath is an evidence based, multi-sensory approach to mathematics that can help students when other learning solutions fail. If a student is diagnosed with dyscalculia, they can still succeed in mathematics.  

  1. TouchMath focuses on all areas of mathematics (basic arithmetic operations, fact retrieval, word problems) via the processing of numbers and quantities. Our program is built on CRA and uses the abstract numeral as a multi-sensory manipulative.
  2. The complete program offering from TouchMath offers visual reminders of rules, formulas, and strategies, with supplemental posters and visual prompts in the problems. This helps students with dyscalculia better grasp math rules and formulas. 
  3. The TouchMath curriculum allows students to have more opportunities to practice areas where they are struggling, which is necessary to embed skills and concepts in long term memory.
  4. Each TouchMath unit supports the student with age respectful content and is reinforced by skip counting, backwards counting, TouchPoints, and/or music.
  5. All TouchMath materials are kept clean and simple, which helps with the suppression of distracting stimuli. TouchMath Pro allows you to select the number of problems per page.

With the right tools, your struggling students can succeed at math just like their peers.

TouchMath is Grounded in Research

The TouchMath program is grounded in the Concrete-Representational-Abstract framework, a sequence of instructional practices and research-based best practices that reflect how most students learn. As students see, say, hear and touch using our signature TouchPoints™ on the numerals, they easily make the connection between the numeral and the quantity it represents.