How Problems with Attention & Memory Affect Math Performance

While attention and memory are important in every subject, they are especially critical to math success. Tammy Andrew, feature writer for Suite 101's teacher tips and training section, discusses how to identify poor math skills stemming from problems with one or both of these.

Common Attention Problems

  • Student overlooks important details. This will be especially evident in word problems.
  • In problems with multiple steps, student frequently skips one or more parts.
  • Student makes random errors (e.g. adding instead of multiplying), showing that they have not taken the time to read the problem in full or check over their work.

Common Memory Problems

  • Student has difficulty recalling single facts or those needed to solve multi-step problems.
  • Student has difficulty identifying the type of problem presented and how to solve it.

How to Identify Poor Math Skills Caused by Attention or Memory