Question about transposing numbers

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by macteach, Sep 18, 2010.

  1. macteach

    macteach Rookie

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    Sep 18, 2010

    I teach second grade. I have about three students who transpose numbers. Is that common for this age or is that a sign of dyslexia?
    I have had kids reverse numbers. I gave a plus ten worksheet the other day, and three of them started on 13 instead of 31 on the 100's chart. Any comments would be appreciated.
     
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  3. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Sep 18, 2010

    As a mom, not someone with an elementary school background:

    It's a common issue. They're not confusing the letters, just forgetting which one comes first.
     
  4. monsieurteacher

    monsieurteacher Aficionado

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    I agree with Alice. If it's consistent, it's possible their may simply be a slight delay, but it's not out of the ordinary in grade two.
     
  5. bros

    bros Phenom

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    Only worry if it is consistent or shows up in other subjects.

    I have dysgraphia, and I will do unusual things all the time, such as mixing up the letter j and the number 5 when writing (So 25 becomes 2j)
     
  6. Sarge

    Sarge Enthusiast

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    It happens most commonly with teen numbers. That's because with those numbers, when we say them, we indicate the ones's value first, followed by the ten - "seven" (7) followed by "teen" (10) is often written as "71" because that's the order in which the place values are spoken. I seldom see this mistake with any other numbers.
     
  7. teacherheath

    teacherheath Companion

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    When I taught 2nd grade (up until this year!), I saw lots of kids w/ backwards numbers in addition to what you described. I would say that almost all of them worked it out by winter break. When parents were concerned at fall conferences, I'd always tell them it was okay, we'll just have them fix them, we won't be concerned till 2nd semester.
     
  8. EMonkey

    EMonkey Connoisseur

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    Sep 19, 2010

    It is very normal in first grade. I usually tell parents if it continues through second grade start worrying if it does not improve.
     
  9. Sarge

    Sarge Enthusiast

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    Sep 19, 2010

    Writing characters backwards (numbers or letters) is fairly normal for 1st grade. By 2nd, if it's still happening, then you have a problem that needs to be addressed.

    But place value out of order needs to be addressed at any age.

    Transposing characters is an academic issue if it's with the teen numbers as I mentioned. There should be immediate reteaching of writing numbers. At my school, if a kindergartener or first grader transposes any numbers on any number writing assessment, then they do not pass the assessment.

    If the student is transposing anything other than teen numbers - i.e. writing 43 instead of 34, then it might indicate a visual perception problem.

    Also, it's important to determine whether or not the student has problems identifying the numbers. With the teen number issue, students can usually identify the numbers correctly, they just have problems writing them. Once again, if they have trouble identifying the numbers as well, then it indicates a deeper problem.

    I would be very cautious about dismissing the transposition of numbers as a developmental issue that goes away.
     
  10. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Sep 19, 2010

    Keep in mind, though, that school has just started in some parts of the country.

    My kids have just finished their first full week of school.

    So those second graders are still making first grade mistakes.

    Is it a "sign" of dyslexia? I guess the answer is "sometimes, but not always."
     
  11. Sarge

    Sarge Enthusiast

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    Also, if a lot of 2nd graders are still having any issues with writing numbers - characters or transposition - I'd take a look at the K-1 math programs or talk to the teachers to see how number writing is being taught in those grades.
     
  12. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Sep 19, 2010

    Keep an eye on it...probably more of an issue with 'number sense' and 'place value' than dyslexia. In grade 2, you'll spend a lot of time on both these standards...
     
  13. Danny'sNanny

    Danny'sNanny Connoisseur

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    Sep 19, 2010

    I have two this year that do it regularly.

    It is something I keep an eye on, but don't worry about too much this early in the year.

    I do put a dot underneath when I grade (same with backwards numbers or letters), so the child can notice and correct it when I pass back papers.
     

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