Dyslexia: Exponents with decimal and fractional bases from the gr9 Math curriculum in Ontario

For Parent

Exponents with Decimal and Fractional Bases

Exponents with decimal and fractional bases is a concept from Grade 9 math in Ontario, Canada. It is a way of expressing numbers in a concise form and is an important skill for solving equations. A basic equation with an exponent with a decimal or fractional base looks like this:

an = y

Where a is the base, n is the exponent (the number of times a is multiplied against itself), and y is the result. For example, if the equation is 21.5 = y, then the result (y) is 4.

Issues A 14 Year Old With Dyslexia May Have With Exponents With Decimal and Fractional Bases

Due to the cognitive differences associated with Dyslexia, it is common for 14 year olds with this condition to have difficulty understanding Exponents with decimal and fractional bases. Here are three common issues they may face, and what the parent can do to help them:

Issue 1: Understanding the Concept of Exponents

This can be a difficult concept for anyone to grasp, but for someone with Dyslexia, the idea of a number being multiplied against itself multiple times can be confusing to understand. A helpful way for parents to explain this concept to their 14 year old is by using concrete tools to demonstrate how it works. This can be done by having them model how to solve the equation with blocks or baseball cards, counting how many times they multiply the number with itself. This can help them gain an intuitive understanding of the equation.

Issue 2: Visualizing The Equation

It can be difficult for someone with Dyslexia to visualize equations and numbers. To help the 14 year old in question understand the equation, it can be helpful for the parent to draw it out for them in a clear and concise way. This way, they can understand the equation on a visual level rather than clinging to words or concepts.

Issue 3: Memorizing Different Forms of Equations

Memorizing different forms of equations can be a struggle for many 14 year olds with Dyslexia. To make it easier for them to memorize and understand the equations, parents can break down each exponent equation into smaller pieces. For instance, they can write down the base and the exponent separately, and then practice using the equation before combining the two in a final form. It can also be helpful to use flashcards as a way of memorizing these equations.

Exponent equation: an = y
Sample Question: What is the answer to 21.5?
Answer: 4

For Youth

Well hello there! I’m very glad you’ve taken the time to learn about exponents with decimal and fractional bases! It’s a really important topic and I want to make sure you feel comfortable learning it.

So first, let’s talk about what an exponent is. An exponent is a number that tells us how many times to use a number in a multiplication problem. For example, if you had the number 2 to the 4th power, that means that you would multiply the number 2 together 4 times. So the equation would look like this: 2 x 2 x 2 x 2.

Now when you’re talking about decimal and fractional bases, it means that you can use those same numbers as a base instead. So maybe your equation would look something like this: 2.3 to the 4th power. That would mean that you’d multiply 2.3 together 4 times. So your equation would now look like this: 2.3 x 2.3 x 2.3 x 2.3.

The same thing works for fractions too! That means that you can have things like 1/2 to the 3rd power too! That would mean that you’d multiply 1/2 together 3 times, so the equation would look like this: 1/2 x 1/2 x 1/2.

I know that these kind of equations can be confusing since they’re a bit different than standard multiplication problems, but if you break them down into smaller steps it can help you understand it better. If you’re having a lot of trouble understanding, why don’t you start with simpler equations with whole numbers instead? For example if you’ve never seen 3 to the 4th power before, start by solving that equation. You’ll find that it’s much easier to understand than one with decimals or fractions first.

Remember, it’s ok to take your time and practice a lot when it comes to these equations. Working at your own pace is important, especially if you’re having issues with Dyslexia. Don’t be discouraged and take your time. Before you know it, you’ll be solving these equations like a pro!