Conveying Mathematical Experiences: The Voice of a Child with Nonverbal Learning Disability

Thumbnail Image
Campbell, C. Bernadette
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
This qualitative research study examines a student-participant's perceptions about mathematics. Within this case study, one child a nonverbal disability, NLD shares his experiences in a mathematics setting. The child with NLD's voice is not often reflected in the literature, as clinical research traditionally characterizes the core deficits of this learning disability. Three main questions guided this research: What does a child with NLD experience in a mathematics classroom, how does he or she conceptualize mathematics, and what are some of the strategies he or she employs in a mathematics setting? The thematic analysis of the qualitative data gathered from observations in a classroom, interviews with the student-participant, as well as mathematics interactions advanced the generation of salient themes. The role of family, school, attitude and conversations about learning, attention and persistence, and the study of error patterns emerged as the main factors influencing the way in which a child with NLD experiences mathematics. I provide a model for conceptualizing the data collected and suggest that a child's affect around mathematics may provide considerable influence in the development of mathematics skill development. The model is supported by the behaviours exhibited by the child with NLD in an in vivo mathematics setting.
Study and teaching (Elementary) , Mathematics , Nonverbal learning disabilities