Saturday 5 March 2016

Learning Multiplication Tables

This is the second post in the Virtual Curriculum Fair 2016. This week the theme is discovering patterns: Mathematics, logic and Science.
This year the Virtual Curriculum Fair is hosted by Laura @ Day by Day in Our World, Chareen @ Every Bed of Roses and Kristen @ Sunrise to Sunset.

I've written about science very recently so have decided to write about learning multiplication tables.

We use spiral maths curriculum so don't spend all our time learning tables. I also know that there is debate about the importance of learning tables. We take the view that knowing multiplication tables well is a useful skills, and indeed it is something that we use in everyday life but that the process of learning them doesn't need to hold up the rest of maths learning.

So how do we go about learning tables?
  • a separate tables session each day. We try to include something in morning time and also add a short tables session to the beginning of maths for the day.
  • Daily learning seems to be the key plus variety to keep up interest.
Before the child starts a table, it is important to make sure that they understand the concept of repeated addition or x lots of. It is easy to demonstrate this visually particularly with the simpler tables for example,
  • 2x table: pairs of shoes, 2 pence pieces, socks, Duplo, knives and forks.
  • 3x table: Duplo, knife, fork and spoon.
  • 5x table: 5 pence pieces, Duplo,fingers and toes.
  • 10x: 10 pence pieces, Duplo, fingers and toes.
We often initially say the table as 2 lots of 2 are 4 etc.

When we first say the table, we use a poster or blackboard and I say the table with the children. 

|Regular, daily practice pays off. Some children need loads and loads of practice and some children seem to pick up tables more easily. We have children of both types!

Ways to practice tables:
  • 1-100 square and colour in multiples. It is worth drawing one square and photocopying a few!
  • Skip the table with a skipping rope-I don't know why this works but it really seems to help.
  • We have a gadget called Digitz which is a loud, electronic way to practice and popular with the children. This was a gift and I'm sorry, but I don't know where this can be obtained in the UK.

  • Writing out the table.
  • List of mixed up table questions.
  • Saying the table against a timer. I only use this when the child wants to practice in this way but it has added fluency for one child. 
  • Schofield and Sims times table work book. This are cheap workbooks, published in the UK. Each page has three sets of ten mixed tables questions. Book one has tables 1,2,3,4,5 and 10 whereas book 2 has all tables up to 12. One of my children does a set of 10 questions most days. The questions use mathematical vocabulary e.g. product and squared and the questions get harder through the book.
  • Throw two dice and find the product of the numbers. To work on tables up to 12 either use a 12 sided dice or as we do, roll each dice twice. Add the two numbers and then multiply.
I know that some families have successfully used tables songs. I have borrowed some from the library but they just didn't work for us although they might well work for other people.

Please add other tables learning ideas in the comments.

This is a list of other bloggers who are participating in this week's VCF. Please do pop over and read who they have to say.
Chareen @ Every Bed of Roses - Thoughts on Math and Science
Kristen @ Sunrise to Sunset  - From Counting to Calculus
Laura @ Day by Day in Our World  - How We Approach Math in This Homeschool Year
Annette @ A Net In Time - Struggling with Math, Loving Science
Annette @ A Net In Time  - Lego Pulleys and Levers
Yvie @ Gypsy Road Hands - On Math with Special Needs Learners
Chelli @ The Planted Trees  - Chemistry Using Living Books
Lisa @ GoldenGrasses  - An Appalling Lack of Curiosity
Edie @ Carter Chaos  - Our Favorite Ways to Study Numbers
Tracey @ A Learning Journey  - Robot Area and Perimeter Art Project
Jennifer @ A Glimpse of Our Life  - Math and Standardized Tests
Jen @ Chestnut Grove Academy  - Discovering Patterns: Mathematics, Logic, and Science
Sarah @ DeliveringGrace  - Learning Multiplication Tables
Kylie @ Our Worldwide Classroom  - Multisensory Multiplication
Kym @ Homeschool Coffee Break  - Science and Stuff
Kemi Quinn @ Homemaking Organized  - Math in Our Homeschool for a Later Elementary Organized Reader
Joelle @ Homeschooling for His Glory  - Math and Logic - Our Steady Path
Laura @ Four Little Penguins  - Math and Science Love

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1 comment:

  1. lots of ways to learn your multiplication tables.

    Visiting through the VCF.