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Education Research International
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 346858, 7 pages
Research Article

How to Support Children with Mathematical Learning Disabilities Learning to Play an Instrument?

Department of Experimental Clinical and Health Psychology Developmental Disorders, Ghent University, H. Dunantlaan, 2 B-9000 Ghent, Belgium

Received 10 March 2012; Accepted 5 April 2012

Academic Editor: Terry Stratton

Copyright © 2012 Annemie Desoete. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


In this study, children with a mathematical learning disability ( 𝑛 = 1 4 ) and age-matched peers without learning disabilities ( 𝑛 = 1 4 ) as well as their parents and teachers were interviewed on how they experienced playing an instrument (guitar, drum, flute, violin, trombone, horn, and piano) and on what helped them using a qualitative interactive interview with a flexible agenda to discover the interviewee’s own framework of meanings. Thematic analyses mentioned intrinsic motivation, extrinsic motivation, and self-efficacy as important. Some children with MLD were found to have a real musical talent and a very good musical ear and memory for sounds. However, all children with MLD seemed more dependent on the aid of parents, sibling, peers, and teachers. They had to study harder and needed more time to study, more practice, and a more structured approach.