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Times tables - what's the best way to help teach them?

(25 Posts)
MaggieW Fri 18-Sep-09 14:57:52

DS, 7 and Y3, is doing 3x tables at the moment. He doesn't seem to be getting it, so what's the best way to help him to learn them please?

zenlikecalm Fri 18-Sep-09 15:02:53

My dds like this, and it's definitely different, a bit fiddly-don't let the pieces fall out and get lost/eaten by dog/baby.

trying a link, hold on tight...

deste Fri 18-Sep-09 22:18:44

You used to be able to buy musical cassettes years ago so I would imagine you would now get CD's. Put them on in the car and they learn by singing a song about tables. Listen to them in the car, very easy and fun.

mumtolawyer Fri 18-Sep-09 22:55:28

I use Table Trees - can't do links but Google it. Very good for repetition if your DS likes computers - random order of questions and you get a mark every time it's right. My DD loves it and it has really improved her tables.

Chuffinnora Fri 18-Sep-09 22:59:46

I copy them out onto a card. Its kept in the car and we sing them on the way to school, swimming etc.
The advantage is that DS who is 4 can do 2, 5 and 10 times table by rote grin.

I just hope he can remember them still when he is in year 2.

whattheheckdoIdonow Fri 18-Sep-09 23:12:27

Start by counting up in threes rather than the whole one times three is...which can be confusing

If he really struggles learn half well then the other half.
So 3,6,9,12,15 really get to grips with that for a day or two
and then up to 30

the last two can be added on at the end and are easier anyway.

Then write lists out for him in a column and he fills in the answers in order.

Then when he's totally got that do the whole chant thing if he has to for school but make sure he counts which one he is up to with his or your fingers so he doesn't get muddled[easily done]

bellissima Sat 19-Sep-09 07:53:49

Deste is right. You can get a CD (?ladybird). You play it in the car to and from school and then realise you are still listening to it as you come out of the supermarket two hours later. They learn the tables and you go insane.

plimple Sat 19-Sep-09 08:13:55

I used to love drawing times table squares (with 1 to 10 along top and 1 to 10 along side and all the multiples in between). I loved colouring them in. I had them all learnt by 6 and still know them automatically. I knew what it all meant though and loved maths.
Does he get why it's useful e.g. surrounded by lots of real life uses if you point them out. From predicting how many cakes you'll get from a 4X3 tin to sharing out sweets with 2 friends and knowing how many you'll get.
Not every child is an auditory learner so it might be useful to see them written down, play with counters/sweets/cakes/marbles etc so you're using your vision and touch too.

ABetaDad Sat 19-Sep-09 08:36:43

We gave DS1 (age 8) a pack of miniature playing cards and then we would deal the cards to him in pairs and if it came up say '2 of diamonds' and '8 of spades' he would do the 8 x 2 calculation in his head and he would shout out the answer.

We had a challenge of getting through the pack in 10 minutes with no mistakes. He used to do it on his own as well as he enjoyed the challenge.

We took out the picture cards to begin with but put them back in so that we could 11 x (Jack), 12 x (Queen) ad 13 x (King).

Goblinchild Sat 19-Sep-09 08:43:46

A Beta Dad, I do the same thing in my class. The boys in particular love it, chance to see themselves as men in a poker game. grin

mrz Sat 19-Sep-09 09:01:55

Putting anything to music helps (you know how some of the worst song lyrics in the world stick in your head all day)

lots more to pick from

ABetaDad Sat 19-Sep-09 09:02:58

Goblinchild - how interesting you use it at school. Was a bit worried I migt be being 'pushy obsessive parent'. grin

TBH though we really struggled with getting DS1 to sit down and learn his tables - but its boring Dad! As soon as we got some playing cards it was suddenly - Dad will you deal the cards to me?

We started out in a really simple way just dealing one card and doing say all th 5 x table. So we would deal say a '7 of hearts' and he would do 5 x 7 and we would work through the whole pack all multiplying by 5 or all multiplying by 2 or whatever times table we were practicing for the test that week.

There are lots of diferent combinations and challenges. We are just starting to work on squared numbers using cards. I also told him about how the atom bob inventors in the Manhattan project used packs of playing cars as random number generators to simlate the explosion. He was fascinated when we linked that to his history lesson on World War II. He just likes 'cool stuff' like that. Not sure if it would work for DS2 though who works in a different way.

mimsum Sat 19-Sep-09 11:35:24

we do it with dice - throw first to decide which table then throw again and again to see how many x - it can be very fast moving and gets them thinking quickly

mrz Sat 19-Sep-09 12:03:51

table tricks

Goblinchild Sat 19-Sep-09 16:24:21

ABetaDad, I used to teach my Y3 Blackjack to reinforce their addition to 20 as well.
They could practice at home as it didn't need special school equipment. Not pushy, you sound as if you are making learning stuff fun and interesting for your children. smile

ABetaDad Sun 20-Sep-09 00:12:15

Yes Blackjack (Pontoon) is fun. DS1 loves that too.

<Wonders if teaching Five Card Stud Poker at age 9 might be a step too far>

JeffVadar Mon 21-Sep-09 16:57:57

It's good to try a range of things though, as different approaches suit different children.
We tried everything with DS, but the only thing that caught his imagination was Tutpup.

posieparker Mon 21-Sep-09 16:59:34

WE repeat
1 2 is 2
2 2s are 4 etc , with rhythm and clapping.

They also have to do them in time out!

wonderfultykes Mon 05-Oct-09 23:12:56

We use pair of clever multi-sided big dice with 2-9 (I think) on, specially for X tables - from 'Fun Learning' shop. Throw both every now and then - maybe over breakfast - get them to multiply the 2 numbers. Or if concentrating on one x table at once, just throw one. Can be done in a spare minute and totally random so makes them think hard! (Trouble is I don't know the answers so have to check on the answer grid!) When reciting get them to say forwards AND backwards, then ask random ones. Put poster up by their bed/loo wall (eg from library/bookshop).

cornsilk Mon 05-Oct-09 23:18:40

Show him visually with money(1p coins)

DadAtLarge Tue 06-Oct-09 19:01:09

When it comes to tables there's nothing, just nothing, that beats Timez Attack. Especially for boys.

cornsilk Wed 07-Oct-09 20:57:10

Numbershark is the best ICT program I've seen for teaching maths. It covers all areas so children can learn multiplication and division facts to strengthen their understanding. My ds's loved it when I had it on my laptop.

choccyp1g Wed 07-Oct-09 22:14:27

For a long time, DS couldn't see the point of times tables, because he -thought- -he-could work them out.
When he finally decided he wanted to learn them, we found a quick chant at bedtime worked wonders. The idea is that it sinks in while you are sleeping. Then I got him to test ME on them.

Cazya Fri 09-Oct-09 21:22:41

My kids like playing times tables games on the internet. Having a choice of games like on this site keeps them interested so they don't realise how many times they're practising each times table.

TeacherHelen Sat 27-Nov-10 00:14:41

Message deleted by Mumsnet.

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