Article ONE:  Help With Math Dyslexia

Help with Math Dyslexia:  by:   Angie Muccillo (BA, EFT- ADV) – Advanced EFT Practitioner – Remedial Massage Therapist Melbourne, Australia,  Author of Tapping For Kids     angiemuccillo@gmail.com

Below is my response to a question posted in the General Interest Discussion section of the EFT4Kids Forum.


I am on staff at a private Christian school for children with learning and developmental delays, and I help children with remedial math and reading. I’m new to EFT and have had some success on issues with myself and also one of my students that I’m tutoring over the summer, but don’t know quite how to proceed. He is very dyslexic, and has severe issues with memory. He has a very hard time remembering anything, so his vocabulary is very low and he reverses a lot of his letters and numbers. I want to help him get past this, but I’m not sure what to do next? We have tapped on many negative emotions such as “I’m stupid”, “Math is confusing”, “Even though I’m not good at Math”, etc. as well as positive alternatives. Any suggestions?


It’s great to hear that you are incorporating EFT with remedial math and reading. There are certainly many ways that EFT may help. Here are some suggestions on ways that you could work with him.

Get him to look at a page of text or numbers and ask him to describe exactly what he sees on the page. It may be that the numbers and letters jump around on the page or they may look like they are on top of one another. Make a list and use his exact words/descriptions as set up statements. Even though he may have a limited vocabulary, tap on the words he uses to describe the problem.

e.g “Even though the words jump around on the page, I’m m still a great kid.”

Ask him for a SUDs. How much do they jump around? 10 means really jumping around and 0 means not jumping around at all/completely still. After a few rounds check his SUD’s again to see if the “jumping around” has eased and then tap on the remainder or what he sees now.

“Even though the words are still jumping around a bit, they are not as bad as before and I’m a really great kid.”

Continue working until it comes down to zero.

Ask after a few rounds, “now what do you see?” You can do this for every reading/writing/math problem that you identify or that he experiences. Try to be specific and work on one issue at a time.

You can also ask him how he feels when looking at a page of text (angry, frustrated, embarrassed etc). Tap on these as separate aspects.

For the letter reversals ask him to spell a word then tap on what happens.

e.g.   “Even though I get my letters back to front when I spell the word cat, I’m still a great kid”

With the memory problem, perhaps you can try this. Get him to look at a short sequence of numbers/letters or words and ask him to repeat them to you. If he can’t remember them, tap on:

“Even though I can’t remember these words…..”
“Even though I get upset/frustrated/angry when I can’t remember…”

 Check again after a few rounds. If he can remember some but not all, tap on:

“Even though I can remember some of the words, but not all of them…..”

 Keep repeating this process, adjusting the set up according to what is changing/happening. If after few rounds he can remember the short sequence, try increasing the numbers you present to him.

As he starts to see even the slightest improvements his confidence will likely start to improve also.

Keep searching for and tapping on the emotional aspects of having dyslexia.

Does he have a hard time at school? How does he feel about himself?

How does he or others label him?

“Even though the kids pick on me…”
“Even though I get embarrassed when….
“Even though I get anxious when…
“Even though I get angry when….
“Even though everyone thinks I’m dumb….”etc

Tap on any specific events or things that have happened in the classroom to upset him. You can use the movie technique to help neutralize these events.

NOTE: This approach may also be used with adults who have math or reading dyslexia. As a Disability Liaison Officer at TAFE, I worked with many adults with a learning disability. Unfortunately at the time I didn’t know EFT. If you work in this area within a school, college or university consider introducing EFT to your students.