Easy Strategies for Teaching Multiplication Facts
Strategies for the visual, auditory, and kinesthetic learners
1. Introduce the concept of multiplication to students first as repeated addition. As students practice repeated addition, they should be able to make the connection between addition and multiplication.[HINT: Many students do not understand the concept of multiplication because they do not recognize that it is a SHORTCUT for repeated addition.]
2. Allow students opportunities to explore multiplication facts by modeling multiplication using arrays. Extend this lesson by showing students how to use multiplication to find the area of their arrays. This helps to reinforce the facts that have been learned through repeated addition and arrays.
3. Some students will not understand or learn multiplication facts any other way except memorization. This is where the Multipication Practice Table below will be very useful and handy.
As you can see the table is color coded to demonstrate the commutative property, i.e. 6 x 4 = 4 x 6. Use this table to assign a particular color of facts for students to memorize within a given timeframe. Provide plenty of learning opportunities in the classroom and at home for students to practice and use these facts.
A suggestion for motivating students to learn the multiplication facts is:
assign a specific color of facts to memorize within a specified time frame. Then plan activities around that color such as dressing in that color, bringing something of that color from home, or creating something at school of that color to associate the color with the facts that are to be learned.
You know your class and grade level, so be creative and decide how to best use this strategy. Notice that starting from left to right, the number of facts decrease by two from 12 facts on the far left to 2 facts on the far right.
The doubles are in bold text and should be memorized together. This will be a perfect opportunity to talk to students about numbers that are perfect squares and have them make arrays to see how perfect squares get their names.
The ones (horizontal facts) are colored coded and most students will master these relatively easy; many will already know them. Therefore, these should not be your focus. However, these facts are GREAT for teaching students about the Identity Property of Multiplication.
Have fun with the tables! If you do not have access to a color copier; highlighters work just fine. Children love colorful presentations.
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