Times tables

Effective Methods for Learning and Memorizing Times Tables

Times tables are the building blocks of mathematical proficiency, forming the basis for various mathematical concepts such as division, fractions, algebra, and geometry. To ensure your child’s confidence and enthusiasm for mathematics, it’s crucial to help them become proficient in times tables. Here are some valuable tips on how your child can practice and master their times tables effectively.

Tip 1: Efficient Times Table Recitation

The key to successful times table memorization is efficient recitation. Encourage your child to recite the times tables in a specific manner, for example, “one two’s are two, two two’s are four, three two’s are six,” and aim for them to complete the entire table in less than 20 seconds.

Initially, allow your child to practice without timing them. It may take more than 20 seconds on their first attempts, and that’s perfectly fine. The journey to mastery takes time, and even a 1-second improvement is progress. Once they can recite a table in this manner within the time frame, cover the answers and have them recite again. Gradually progress to the next times table when they can consistently achieve this goal.

We recommend practicing and memorizing tables from x2 to x9, as these form the foundation for long multiplication and cover the more challenging ones to remember.

Tip 2: Avoid Learning Only the Answers

A common mistake to avoid is having your child memorize only the answers, such as 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, and so on. Understanding the questions behind the answers is crucial for more advanced mathematical concepts, like long multiplication. For instance, when solving 45 x 7, your child needs to know both 5 x 7 and 4 x 7. Make sure your child practices with both questions and answers to build a strong foundation.

Remember, mastering times tables is a journey. Acknowledge and praise the effort your child puts into their practice.

Tip 3: Addressing Specific Struggles

If your child faces challenges with certain times tables, particularly x6, x7, and x8, here are strategies to help them improve:

– Divide and conquer: Have your child learn half of the table at a time. For example, for the x6 table, start with 1×6 to 6×6. When they can recite this segment in less than 10 seconds, proceed to the second half from 7×6 to 12×6. After mastering both halves, combine them to recite the entire x6 table in under 20 seconds.

– Identify stumbling blocks: Listen to your child recite the times table without answers and note which parts they struggle with the most. Focusing on these specific challenges can help them improve their overall proficiency.

Here’s an extra tip for when there are only a couple they can’t quite remember.

Tip 4: Learn the Squares

Once your child has learned all their times tables, reinforce their knowledge by memorizing the squares:

1×1=1, 2×2=4, 3×3=9, 4×4=16, 5×5=25, 6×6=36, 7×7=49, 8×8=64, 9×9=81.

If they encounter difficulties with a particular square, encourage them to work up or down from it. This method reinforces their memory and aids quick recall.

Remember that progress may take time, so stay patient and consistent in your practice.

By following these tips and strategies, you can help your child master times tables effectively, setting them on a path to mathematical success.

Original Content on AustralianSchoolMums.com.au: Math Tutor Tips: How to Recite Times Tables.