EDU PSYCH LAB

Educación, Psicología & Ciencia


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From theories to practice: Alex, what does “1”mean ?

Many authors have paid attention to the etiology of dyscalculia (here I use dyscalculia or math disability as equivalent terms, even is not very purist). In this post, we  address some of the most famous theories in this field and how we can link them to the real practice.
Almost everybody agrees with the two most famous theories in this area, which are actually an amazing work in numerical cognition. These theories propose that number troubles come from a weakness in number sense or numerosity coding.

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Mental Number Line

 

  1. The Theory of the Approximate Number System (ANS), and how we use it for representing large and approximate numbers via a mental number line (Dehaene, 2011).
    Is “8” big or small? – If we consider that a number lower than 5 is small.
    Is “6” big or small?
    Probably it´s much easier for a kid to say that 10 is a big number, due to the “mental line distribution”
  2. The Numerosity- Coding Hypothesis proposed by Butterworth (2010), which states that Math Disability is caused by a deficit in the processing of smaller and exact sets of numbers.
    These theories state that we all have a preverbal ability which contributes to the foundation for the Symbolic Number System that we use to learn mathematics.

 

numerosity

Blue or Yellow? – In the easy task, the blue stars are much more salient but in the difficult task, a number of stars are quite similar, thus the RT increases.

 

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Executive Functions in the Schools

Why study EF?

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School Program

EFS (Executive Functions) are complex. Complex to assess, to work with and even to write about them; and even so, I chose this topic for my research and PhD dissertation. EFS comprise a diverse range of cognitive processes which underline many disorders and difficulties that children and youngsters present at school and everyday life. Through the understanding of all these cognitive processes – planning, working memory, attention, inhibition, self-monitoring, self-regulation and initiation, we will be able to develop different programs and individual interventions to help them, not only in educational settings but wellbeing in life (emotional and social development). It becomes a challenge.

Students use EF at school, to complete assignments, engage during the lessons, learn concepts, and behave appropriately. There are many studies which prove a direct relation between EF and achievement in math, language skills, reading comprehension and writing (Sluis, de Jong & van der Leij, 2004).

When children experiment delays in the development of different EF, their understanding of academic material and social interactions suffer (they may be unable to establish new friendships or interact socially).
Several common developmental disorders emerge during early childhood (e.g. LD, ADHD, ADD, autism) and are associated with impairment in EF. Many kids show “x” behaviors sometimes, however if these behaviors persist along the time, or increase their intensity or interfere with their everyday life, parents should be aware and ask for help. To present certain troubles in EF during childhood, it doesn’t mean that the kid presents a disorder, but often EF issues co-occur with learning, ADHD or developmental delays. Sigue leyendo