Make Math Facts Stick

Make Them Stick.

If your learner’s not having success in mastering basic multiplication and division facts, stop!

Double-Check A Few Things First.

First off…

Be sure you’re incorporating the suggestions in Ready to Start–Start off Strong.

Additional Resource

Fluency in basic math facts starts with understanding the concept of what multiplication and division are all about.

Our lesson plan, “A Fun Way to Show the Multiplication & Division Relationship” is a downloadable aid you can use with your learner.

Second…

Build momentum by starting with the zeroes table.

Both you and your learner may balk at the idea of going back to the zeroes table. You may be tempted to try to assess and figure out which table or which facts are causing the most obvious problems and to go back to that point. Our blog post “My Child Already Knows Some Facts. Why Go Back to Zero?” will provide rationale and more details on that subject.

Suffice it to say here: Going back to the zeroes table, for both multiplication and division, assures success.

Be sure the child understands why the product is always zero when zero is a factor. They should also understand why zero can never be a one-digit divisor. Most learners think it’s fun to see how many correct answers (all zero) they can write in one minute.

Build Momentum.

Additional Resource

Want some help teaching about multiplication by and division into zero?

Download our FREE Quick Start Pack. It includes videos that teach "Multiply by 0" and "Divide into Zero," plus zeroes flash cards , and assessment for each lesson.

We've also included an introductory video that provides information about a system for mastering basic facts. 

The next day, teach the ones table, again making sure that the learner understands what multiplying and dividing by one are all about.

Then assess for both multiplication and division.

Now that those two easy tables are memorized, provide assessment that combines the zeroes and ones tables in both multiplication and division. Success with these easy tables will let the student know that when answers are known fluently (without any calculation), they can be retrieved (written) very quickly and accurately.

Keep Moving On.

Continue teaching the tables. After 25 years of teaching basic math facts, here’s what I recommend:

  1. Teach in small increments (just a few new facts at a time).
  2. Teach multiplication first and then division of the same table.
  3. Rearrange the tables, beginning with the easiest: 0, 1, 2, 5, 10, 9, 3, 6, 4, 7, 8. (When tables are learned in this order, there is only one easy new fact to learn for 7’s and no new facts for 8’s.).
  4. Assess and review at the completion of each table.
  5. Keep it pleasant! Provide an appropriate incentive if necessary.

Save Time And Frustration. Use A “Done-For-You” System.

You, of course, can create adequate lesson plans to teach mastery of basic multiplication and division facts.

On the other hand, you might want to save yourself and your learner some time and frustration by using my system, Quick Facts with Grandma Bee. It was perfected over 15 years of trial and error in the classroom and contains everything you need to get your child un-stuck.

Ready to get your learner fluent in multiplication and division? Click here to find out more.