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Math help for a child with NLD

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I'm homeschooling my 12 year old daughter after pulling her out of public school at the end of her 3rd grade year. At the time I didn't know she had NLD. She was diagnosed with ADHD, poor working memory, and a low average IQ. I felt like we were missing something with her diagnosis. She was unable to tell time, understand place value, and couldn't get a grasp on money.


After our first year at home I called the neuropsychologist back and told her what I was seeing. She then looked back at the records and told me that she believed that she had a Nonverbal Learning Disability.

She gave me a very grim prediction of what I could expect of her mathematically. Basically, if she can get to the point where she can use money and tell time we're doing well.


I'm now at a wall with her math. I have been allowing her to move forward without the expectation of mastery. I've made modifications based on my research using books about teaching children with NLD. She has stopped at the end of 4th grade math. I can't seem to get her past it. She continues to struggle with time, money, measuring, and place value. I don't know what to do.


First, let me ask if there are any parents of preteen or teen children with NLD that can share their experience with math?


Second, should I continue to try to introduce new concepts?


Third, should I stop and just focus on mastering time & money?


My fear is that she may never understand these concepts. It truly makes no sense to her. Am I spinning my wheels? Am I expecting too much? We use a spiral math curriculum and I allow her as much time as she needs on a lesson. We took 1 1/2 years (including summer) to get through 4th grade math. We just started 5th grade math and she made it through the first part because it was mainly review of 4th. I just need some guidance. I know when she was in public school she was in special education and she was allowed to be promoted without passing. I want to believe we can do better than this but I also don't want to deny her limitations.


Thank you,


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Maybe look into some Kumon books that cover those topics (because money and time are pretty important things to have a strong grasp of). And I wouldn't hesitate at going back to elementary grades for those topics if she needs it. Do you have math manipulatives? Right Start has place value cards. Also try using cuisinaire rods with her. Base 10 blocks.


I wouldn't accept comments saying "don't expect"---I come from the place where I always expect my kids to do better. They may not be at the level that our society expects for their age or they may be beyond it---but I always think that as parents we should gently keep pushing and helping with a spirit of understanding.


What math program are you using? You may need to change or combine and use several things together. You may even have to go down a grade or two (maybe keep her moving forward in her strong areas and to find her level in some others and get her moving forward from there).


Also I would just find ways to incorporate time and money into daily life everyday. What exactly is she having a hard time with---the fractions aspect of money and math? decimals and percents? Or even more basic?


Maybe something like Life of Fred would be a good supplement.

Edited by Walking-Iris
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Does your dd fit at all into the right brain learner or visual spatial learner styles? Read up on those and see if you recognize any similaries to your dd. Often kids with ADHD or on the autism spectrum are right brain learners. My own dd has no diagnosed disabilities, but I pulled her out of school after 2nd grade, and she hadn't learned any math at all. She didn't learn to tell time (even with me at home) until age 10, and that was when I moved our clock down to the fireplace hearth where she could see it all the time. She didn't learn money until she started getting an allowance and wanting to buy things. She didn't learn measurement until I bought TONS of manipulatives (Feet by the Foot, Centimeter Cubes, Inch Color Tiles, Customary weights, Metric weights, a balance, a yard stick which I covered with a border that had grass on it to make it a literal "yard" stick) and we measureed things. Teach one thing at a time to mastery. Don't give up hope. Maybe look at livingmath.net and start reading books about specific math topics and watching movies and playing with manipulatives. I also like Singapore Math 1A, 1B, 2A and 2B. After that, not so much. We were doing Singapore Math 1A in 3rd grade. Do what you need to do. The "experts" don't know everything. HTH!

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