Get Them Fluent.
Your learner may completely understand the concepts of multiplication and division. He or she may employ satisfactory mathematical strategies for recalling the answers. But maybe fluency is lacking; maybe it takes the brain a bit too long to retrieve a fact.
If your learner has been through all the tables, both multiplication and division, and can recall the answers without mental calculation, perhaps practice in speed is all that’s necessary to become really fluent.
Use Confidence To Your Advantage!
First, you want your learner to be confident that he can physically write the answers quickly.
The best way to prove that is to start with the zero table in multiplication. Let him see just how many answers (all zeroes!) he can write in one minute. Then give a similar assessment for division: a whole page of problems with zero as the dividend and as the quotient.
A Sequence For Assessing Fluency
After 25 years of helping children achieve math facts fluency, I found a sequence that works:
- Assess for “Multiply by 0.”
- Assess for “Divide into 0.”
- Assess for “Multiply by 1.”
- Assess for “Divide by 1.”
- Review assessment of “Multiply by 0, 1.”
- Review assessment of “Divide by 1 and into 0.”
Your child will have no doubt that, when answers are known without calculation, they can be retrieved (written) super-quickly.
A good assessment score for a one-minute timing is 50 digits, all accurate. Notice that it’s 50 digits, not necessarily 50 answers because some answers will consist of 2 digits.
How To Improve Speed And Build Upon Success
From this point on, you will want to provide practice with flashcards before assessing.
Be sure the child can recall the answer on the flash card immediately, without any calculation, before assigning a timed test.
If the answers don’t come readily, provide some mathematically-sound strategies for the facts. If the child hesitates before giving an answer, say, “Tell me what you’re thinking to try to come up with the answer.” The response will help you to know what to teach.
Continue on through the tables in this order: 0, 1, 2, 5, 10, 9, 3, 6, 4, 7, 8 with reviews of all previously-learned facts in both multiplication and division after each table.
Watch this video of a parent like you who helped her children become fluent in multiplication and division facts.
Save Time And Frustration. Use A “Done-For-You” System.
Like you, and many other teachers, I have found that materials included in most math curricula are not sufficient for teaching math fact fluency. We all know, however, that without that fluency, our students work at a disadvantage. Quick Facts with Grandma Bee is the system I perfected over 15 years of trial and error in the classroom.
Click here to learn about the system that can get your child fluent.
Next For You:
Read these articles to learn more about helping your child master basic math facts.