Monday, January 19, 2015

Mastering Multiplication Facts

Memorize those facts...easier said than done, right? As a 3rd, 4th, or 5th grade teacher you know how critical it is for your students to know their facts with fluency. It sets them up for math success, so they're not counting on their fingers or getting stuck on other math concepts because they don't know their facts. If you haven't started a program or incentive yet or what you have in place isn't working, coming back from winter break is the PERFECT opportunity to start! You can start tomorrow!
One of my favorite creations to motivate my students to memorize their multiplication facts has been in my classroom since my first year teaching (18 years ago!). I like the simplicity and the fact that it only takes about a minute of my class time each day. Of course, over the years I've added to my program (parent letters, study key rings, bracelets, postcards, division, and addition programs). It's like wine, it gets better with age! :)
I give each student two sets of multiplication key rings (one to take home/car to study, and one for their desk to reference/study). When my students have a spare minute they whip out their key ring to study for their upcoming timed test. They're the perfect reference tool and study aide! 
 Top half of picture: When my students walk in our classroom, it is their responsibility to grab a multiplication timed test when they turn in their homework. (The first week I always remind them, but after that, they miss their chance to take a timed test if they forget it). It's also their responsibility to fill in the numbers for their multiplication level before math time. This simple routine only take a couple of days for all students to get the hang of.
Bottom half of picture: I also give my students a door hanger to keep everyone out while studying their multiplication facts and a parent letter explaining the program.

 It is so quick and easy, I've posted a short video just to show you how it only takes a little over a minute of your math block (hate my voice!)! As I said earlier, the students already have the timed tests numbered with their level on their desks before I start. I give my students about 30 seconds, you can determine your time depending on your students' ability and grade level. A student collects them and I grade them quickly at lunch.

 One way to get them hooked...math accessories! heehee!
 If they pass their timed test, they move onto the next level. I give them a multiplication bracelet to study the next level, which I store in an accordion file holder. These bracelets have been a HUGE HIT! As I give them their new bracelet, they also collect a sticker to put on the multi-purpose chart (picture below).
 Look at all those graduates!!! As you can see on the chart, I start on the 2s and go up to 12s. After they've passed their 12s, they have to take one more test...a mixed review (all mixed up numbers). Then when they pass their mixed review, they GRADUATE!! I make them a diploma, they wear a cap and gown and parade around the room to Pomp and's official! And, they don't have to take any more timed tests!!! Yay!
Here are a list of websites that can help your students practice multiplication facts:
 This multiplication program has done wonders for  my students! I've found lots of success with motivating my students to complete their multiplication timed tests to graduate. I have only 5 students left to graduate and 2 of them are on their mixed review!!
If you are interested in this program, click here for the Multiplication Bundle-everything you need in one place! If you're not sure, you can read the feedback of others who have used it.
Also available, are the Division Bundle and Addition Bundle. When your students finish multiplication, you can start division! If you have primary friends who need an incentive program to get their students to memorize their addition facts, send them over! :)

 I hope this post helps explain how the program works in my classroom. If you have ANY questions, please feel free to ask! :)


  1. I love your ideas - especially the bracelet. At our school (in the south of New Zealand), when pupils start learning the mult facts, they are given the division on the same home-practice sheet as we think it seems natural to learn them side-by-side. We find this very effective, right up to x12. Pupils work their way through the mult/div facts in this order: x2, x5, x10, x11, x4, x8, x3, x6, x9, x7, x12. First they work through the series with a four-minute review test each Friday, then they work through them again as a refresher doing the tests with a 3-minute time limit.

  2. This post is terrific, Joanne!! I love the bracelets and your "graduation"!! Your door hangers are adorable! You always have such wonderful ideas; thank you!!

  3. Totally free program for learning multiplication tables for children.

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  4. To master the mathematics is been too easy now and students would be able to regard about the vital provisions of interest they must needed to acquire. apa case study format

  5. You have made multiplication facts so easy for kids. I am definitely going to try these ideas in my class. Hey, in case you need help with fun and learn preschool activities then I will recommend a fun website that has loads of free ideas that you can easily utilize. Take a look here

  6. I LOVE your website! I teach 3rd grade and I am getting them ready to enter 4th grade. Multiplication has been so much fun and engaging for my students. They especially love the bracelets. I'm excited to use this very motivating program with my 3rd grade class next year! Thank you so much!

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  9. Hi! Love this, just curious.. what’s the standard to pass? If they do not pass do you hold them to that fact family until they pass? How do you manage the class when students are working on different fact families?

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