Multiplication Fundamentals

Image by:  David Dominici

Learning the fundamentals of a particular subject area is important.   In the realm of math, the word fundamentals can be misleading.  CNN produced an article on the lack of math fundamentals in this piece.  Every math strand requires some type of fundamental understanding.  According to the Core Standards, mastering the multiplication tables should occur in the early elementary grades.  Having mathematical fluency at a young age is important.  In elementary school, students that haven’t mastered their multiplication tables may fall behind and not be able to access higher level math skills that require a concrete understanding of multiplication.  Beyond raw memorization via flash cards, teachers need to find strategies/methods to introduce the multiplication tables.  Over time, I have found that the following strategies enable students to understand and master the multiplication tables (0-10):

1.)  Math Apps

The following apps help students master and deepen their understanding of multiplication:

– MathBlaster Hyperblast

– Math Ninja HD

– Rocket Math

– Factor Samurai

2.)  Manipulatives

Students often need a visual demonstration to come to their own understand of multiplication.

– Egg Carton Math

– Multiplication Balloon (Could easily be created)

– Base Ten Multiplication

3.)  Games

– Math Smart Game (Students could actually create their own multiplication board game)

– Multiplication Four in a Row

– Multiplication / Factor Bingo

4.)  Student Multiplication Projects

– Multiplication House

– Math Wanted Poster

– Multiplication String Art

5.)  Introducing Practical Multiplication Problems

Finding practical math problems is important and gives students an opportunity to apply their learning. Here are a few resources that may introduce problems or communicate the relevancy of using multiplication outside of the classroom.

Real World Math Problems (PDF, Word, and PPT forms)

Elementary Multiplication Examples

Geography and Multiplication (PDF)

Additional Multiplication Resources

IBM Youtube Commerical (Why is math relevant?)

Make a Math and Art Connection

Author: Matt Coaty

I've taught elementary students for the past 14 years. I enjoy reading educational research and learning from my PLN. Words on this blog are my own.

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