How the hell do I teach my child maths when numbers make no sense to them?

Do not fear there is a way and it plays to their strengths. All you have to do is turn EVERYTHING into VISUALS  and STORIES and I promise, they will grasp the concepts and maths for Dyslexia becomes easy.

Dyslexic and Dyscalculia brains work more with their right VISUAL brains than their left logical ones. However if you turn everything into a VISUAL,  the right brain can finally help out that left brain (The left brain is screaming for more information than blank!).

Below are SOLUTIONS to problems that continue to fox dyslexic and dyscalculia children using VISUALS. This is Maths for Dyslexia:

  • Making sense of words like Add or Sum - tell them the add / sum sign + is like the pharmacy symbol. Then tell them and let them SEE this story “If you add (+) medicine to a sick person they get better’. ‘If you add (+) sum medicine to a sick person they get better’ : it’s that simple and don’t worry that ‘sum’ and ‘some’ aren’t spelt the same it wills stick in their heads and they won’t be confused.  

  • Making sense of the word multiplication and times - tell them that the multiplication and times sign X is like a kiss at the bottom of a letter.  Then tell them the story “If two people kiss X and fall in love they will multiply and made a lot of babies”. “If they kiss XXX many times they will make lots of babies”. If you multiply (X) two numbers they produce much bigger numbers : it’s simple tricks like this that will make them understand the difference between + and x and suddenly maths becomes easy.

  • Getting numbers jumbled up or back to front. My children always wrote 5 and 2 the wrong way round or couldn’t remember which was which. Look at it teaches numbers using characters. Once your child remembers that 5 is the snake and 2 is the swan. Voila no more jumbling numbers.

  • Learning Times Tables off by heart : this is ESSENTIAL for all children with maths Dyslexia or Dyscalculia. If they don’t know them off by heart school life becomes very difficult and will ruin their confidence. However they can EASILY learn them if you turn everything into a VISUAL. Dyslexic brains are often brilliant at visuals and they can learn them even faster than so called ‘normal brained’ children. Again check out Table Fables which is made specifically for Dyslexic and Dyscalculia children - maths for Dyslexia really can be easy.

  • Getting lost in the middle of calculations. There are various solution for this. Get some large graph paper and make sure all the numbers are lined up properly.

  • OR a more simple method which can be done anywhere. Draw a box like this and put the multiplication calculation in (use coloured pens if easier).

    This stops them getting muddled where they are in the calculation and keeps everything lined up.

I cannot repeat enough how ESSENTIAL learning your Times Table and Dividing facts off by heart is but I also know how difficult that is for number dyslexics.

However if you use visuals to teach maths for Dyslexia all will be ok.

  • FRACTIONS - again it is IMPOSSIBLE to understand fractions unless you know your Times Table and Dividing facts off by heart. I’m going to keep talking about it until you go and learn your times tables!

Once they know their times tables you then have to get them to understand fractions, again using VISUALS.


  1. Everything that happens to the bottom of fraction has to happen at the top. Visual : You CAN’T change the BOTTOM of the building if you don’t change the TOP, otherwise it will fall down.

  2. You can’t multiply two fractions that don’t have the same BOTTOMS. Visual : I explain it like trying to add CHEESE & CHOCOLATES together it’s NEVER going to work, that will make a disgusting cake. The bottoms have to be BOTH Cheese or BOTH Chocolate.


Last word on TIMES TABLES and DIVIDING. Your child can muddle through school without knowing them, always thinking they are stupid and rubbish at maths until they get their hands on a calculator and things become a bit easier.

However they will ALWAYS be SLOWER in EXAMS compared to their peers who know their multiplications. In exams speed is very important and if you have to use the calculator for everything it will slow them down enormously and you can easily make mistake on a calculator.

As for ADULT HOOD Times Tables and Dividing are also essential, more than you can imagine. And if you don’t know them?? Trust me you always feel stupid and WASTE huge amounts of time, trying to figure them out.

Splitting restaurant bills?

Working out the 12 monthly repayments on the car, sofa or holiday?

Can I afford that mortgage on my salary?

Do I have enough money to buy 4 people drinks?

Are those 6 donuts ridiculously expensive or reasonable?

How much do I pay the baby sitter “shoot - I tipped them £30 extra!”

I get paid $48,000 a year how much will I be paid monthly?

Is it cheaper to buy those bananas in the bag or as single items?

How much are those railway tickets for the 4 of us?

Maths for Dyslexia will be an on going journey throughout your life - we advise using visuals to sort out problems and wish you luck.