Fun Games to Teach Math Facts
It's very important for students to memorize math facts. Knowing math facts can dramatically speed up their ability to solve math problems and give them more confidence. When kids get into higher grades math problems become longer. A child who hasn't mastered their math facts may spend several minutes working through one problem.
There are many ways to help a child memorize these facts. These include worksheets, flashcards, computer games, and iPad and Android apps. You can also play some simple games with a child to make learning math facts more fun. These games can be used for addition, subtraction, multiplication and division facts.
Learning math facts takes time. Try to have your child do something everyday. It may take months to finally memorize all math facts up to 12. You can also play these games with preschoolers and kindergarten age children to get them off to a fast start. But you should keep the numbers small for younger children.
A Simple Flashcard Game
This game can be used with addition, subtraction, mulitiplication and division flashcards. Most flashcards are two-sided. Mark one side of each card. I just use a marker and put a circle on each card. The marked side should consist of smaller numbers. Put the deck of flashcards down, non-marked side up. You will also need a pencil and paper. Create a column with your child's name and your own name.
Have your child pick a card and solve the problem. Then you should pick a card and solve the problem on that card. The highest card will win the round. Place a check mark under the winners name. The first person to earn 10 to 20 marks wins the game. You should start off with 10 and then increase the number of marks required to win as your child's skills and speed improve.
When your child has built familiarity with the marked side of the cards, start using the non-marked (higher number) side to play the game.
The Importance of Math Fact Fluency
Spin Math With a Dry Erase Learning Mat
You can either buy a spin math game or create a simple one of your own. I bought a Dry Erase Learning Mat from Target for a dollar. Or you can buy from Amazon. If you want to make your own, you'll need two brads to make two spinners. Each spinner will have numbers between 1 and 12.
If your child is beginning to learn math facts, just use one spinner and have a fixed addend. For example, you can focus on adding 2 to whatever number you get on the spinner. Once your child has mastered adding 2 to other numbers move onto 3. When they have mastered math facts all the way to 12, you can start using both spinners. You can also use your spin math to learn subtraction and multiplication.
Like with the flashcard game, make this a competition. Whoever gets the highest number wins each round. To begin with, require just 10 marks to win. Once your child's skills improve, you can start to increase the number of marks to 15 or 20.