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  1. #1

    Question How do you make a small child practice multiplication tables?

    How do you make a small child practice multiplication tables? She is a 3rd grader and I have been trying to teach multiplication. She takes no interest in practicing times table.

    After continuous battle with textbooks and multiplication charts, I tried few activities from the internet and it was useful. So I looked for more and bought this multiplication game & Flash cards. She enjoyed the game and has grabbed the concept. With these games, she got a lot of practice.

    I want more such fun colorful resources for multiplication tables. Please suggest.

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  3. #2


    Welcome! Does she understand the concept behind multiplication - what it means? If youre getting a lot of resistance, it may be because she isnt understanding fundamentally what the fuss is about.
    She also might not be ready for it - think back about what grade you were in when you learned them - I didnt learn mine until 4th grade.
    No sense making her hate math by forcing her to memorize facts that she might not be developmentally ready for.

    All that said, my older boy gained competency by playing multiplication dice against me. Start with two six sided dice, see how many products she can come up with in a minute. You do it for a minute too... My boy and I would play 5 rounds a day (about 15 mins). Make a chart showing that she is getting faster. (Have her give you the product, but on your turn you slow yourself down by saying the whole problem aloud.) Once those are mastered, switch to a 10-sided and a 6-sided die. Then two 10-sided dice. Even buy fancy gaming dice, if you like. They come in all sorts of pretty styles.
    Nearing fluency, both my son and I were getting 20-25 per minute. Thats a minimum of 100 problems answered by him, and the same number he was hearing me answer. And fun.
    Homeschooling DS11, DS5.


    My spelling and typing are fine, its my keyboard that doesnt cooperate.

  4. #3


    We also have a multiplication war game that is well loved. I think I picked it up at Barnes and Nobles years ago.
    DS16 with ASD, DD12 and DS10

  5. #4


    How do you make a small child practice multiplication tables?
    I remember multiplication drill bringing me to tears when I was in 3rd grade. I was later diagnosed with dyscalculia which would explain why I understood the concepts just fine but fact drill was pure torture. Just something to think about.

    One thing that helped me finally remember the facts was the use of various "tricks" such as the finger trick for the nines facts and picture stories like the ones in on

    I never required my kids to memorize the multiplication tables but they did eventually memorize them on their own, just through use when solving problems both in their math studies and in real life. I was more interested in making sure they had a conceptual understanding of math than being able to spit out memorized facts on command.

  6. #5


    Has anyone tried the multiplication explorers course from Natural Math? I have been thinking of trying it for my daughter but not sure if it is worth it.

    My daughter never really understood the concept behind multiplication. She does now (just finishing up 4th grade) but she is still painfully slow on them. However, she does have processing speed issues. We just play card games, the Right Start Math ones, and she likes to listen to the Schoolhouse Rock multiplication songs but I don't know how much they help her. I also found her a fun colorful book that gives a lot of tips/tricks. Its called Turn to Learn Times Tables. We are trying to focus on her learning ways to figure out a multiplication rather than knowing it off by heart so that she does not just freeze up when she gets a multiplication problem.

  7. #6
    Senior Member Evolved Deli76's Avatar
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    Sep 2011
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    Coins! Kids LOVE money! They can buy candy and toys with it! On a serious note, we did use coins. It made counting by 5s and 10s really easy. We also did a sun dial. But that helps with bigger numbers like 15. We used rows of pennies to represent the lower numbers. I also hung a multiplication chart. I think she looked at it more than what I saw. She eventually caught on. Another thing I would have dd do is skip counting, but only the first 4 numbers. Such as 2-4-6-8....3-6-9-12....4-8-12-16....5-10-15-20. She built on it from there. Math didnt always come easy for dd. It was something we really took our time at. I posted about math on here many times. But she did get it. And I was so so so happy when she did. I am so greatful that homeschooling has allowed her to learn at her own pace. Good luck and have fun with it. Let us know how it goes!
    Bobo 13 yrs old - marches to the beat of her own drum, driven, out going and loud, yet she loves nature
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    umbers cucumbers!!!!

  8. #7


    I don't make a big deal about memorization. I am more concerned about understanding of concepts. But I do use games to help with concepts.

    Also, Schoolhouse Rock has a series of videos on skip counting, which is pretty much the same.

    Games that we like include
    Yahtzee - Covers multiplication up to 6

    There are lots of books with math games, here are some of my favorites:

    Games for Math by Peggy Kaye (Good for math from K-3rd)
    Math Games & Activities from Around the World by Claudia Zaslavsky
    Big Ideas for Small Mathematicians: Kids Discovering the Beauty of Math with 22 Ready-to-Go Activities by Kajander
    A mama, who teaches college writing, as well as help her 10-year-old in
    choosing his own life adventure. Using Global Village School to support our desire to develop a sense of social justice and global awareness.
    I also share free and low-cost educational resources at

  9. #8
    Senior Member Enlightened Artmama's Avatar
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    Jan 2015


    We leaned them through song - There is a teacher Mr. DeMaio who uses pop songs - we listened to them ad nausea but it worked! DD even learned how to do the cup song to go along with the 7's! This is the youtube channel:

  10. #9


    We used Timez Attack, but I see they are not supporting the home free version anymore. it appears if you scroll to the very bottom, you can still download it, but I don't know how well it works on Windows 10 with the new policy of non-support.

    Cool Math Games

    This was a really awesome game, but any game you use can make it more fun than boring rote memorization. There are also different ways of teaching multiplication visually like the area method and Japanese multiplication for which you can find You Tube videos and other resources if those methods appeal. I was not the best at memorization and it was usually easier for me when I was young to figure it out each time then rely on memory. I think I learned it better that way, anyway.

  11. #10


    First....stop. Trust your instinct! I didn't learn either, until 4th grade, and when I did, it was in a couple of weeks, riding home on the bus, looking at a composition book with the times table. My daughter, when doing K12, they wanted her to do in 2nd grade! We drilled. 2nd, 3rd, in 4th it clicked and 5th we were doing the same level of work.

    Play games...use tables, but no, don't drill just yet.

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How do you make a small child practice multiplication tables?