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how to transition to mental math

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Ronit Bird.  Promote visualization.  


Does she have any disabilities?  Just likes fingers?  For many kids fingers are a normal stage.  But if it's *staying* fingers and you suspect disabilities or something going on, then you step up your intervention to improve visualization strategies for the math.  Personally, I LOVE Ronit Bird.  You can get her Dots ebook for under $10.  Highly recommend.

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Have you looked at Touch Math?  


The Ronit Bird ebooks are so inexpensive, you could look at them and *see* if Dots would apply.  You really never know with people.  And I don't know about your situation enough to know if there's some ID or other things going on.  It sort of depends on what your goal is, kwim?  Maybe think in terms of functional goals, like I want to be able to add money and use money in a store or estimate my grocery cost or play dominoes or that kind of thing without needing fingers.  If you get some practical goals like that, then work backwards.  The RB Dots book is *deceptively* simple.  By the time you've gone through that you'll have done not only basic numeracy but all her add/subtract facts.  And she'll be doing them visually, which will move her away from the fingers.  And RB has enough activities for each step that she can *probably* get it to click.  Since the ebook is under $10, it would be worth a try.  And it would translate directly to life skills.


RB's C-Rods ebook is next, and it will move them into more complicated math (with 10s, etc.).  That would be the logical next step.  


If she were younger and wanted a curriculum, Touch Math would be an option.  There are lots of ways to do things.  I'm just thinking you *might* be able to sneak in Dots more easily.  It's sort of cute, with games and videos, and it can be done in short sessions.  Depending on how well she did she might get through it in a week or two.  Then go right into C-Rods.  C-rods will continue with dots, introduce the cuisinaire rods, and even bring in abacus.  Just a good, versatile approach.  


Another way to approach it (just giving you options to see what clicks) would be to try the Finger Soroban method.  You can google for instructions.  I did some with my ds, who has dyscalculia, and he enjoyed it.  He doesn't use it now, but it was a good stage for us.  


Just checking, but is she able to count to 50 or 100?  Able to tell you what number comes before another number?  I really don't know what adult dyscalculia looks like.  For my ds, even those basic things have been hard.  She might have some gaps in number sense that are actually the *reason* the calculation concepts don't click.  Like if you don't easily know that 7 comes before 8, then it's really hard to get the right answer for 70 + 10, kwim?  You could get some books on dyscalculia.  Sousa's How the Brain Learns Math is one.

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