Times tables

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By John Davis

Times tables are a hot topic at the moment. The new online tests are set to be introduced to all schools in 2017 and they already feature in the new 2016 National Curriculum Tests. Use these strategies and activities to make tables teaching easier and more engaging. Rote learning has it’s place but it’s not the only way to tables perfection.

Times tables

Use these activity sheets to practise times tables with your children. They all use interesting methods to reinforce learning without relying on chanting or rote learning.

Up the wall All in a line activity sheet Digital roots activity sheet


Strategies for tables

  • Point out to pupils that they only have to learn half of their tables, since numbers produce the same answers in whatever order they are multiplied. You may not know what 4×7 is but if you know 7×4 = 28, so you have a solution.
  • Stress the link between multiplication and division as inverse operations. From 6×9 = 54, it follows that 54 ÷ 9 = 6 and that if 40 ÷ 8 = 5 then 8×5 = 40.
  • Play the game ‘Keep it in the family’. Give pupils a group of three numbers and ask them to compile two multiplication facts and two division facts from them. For example: 7, 35 and 5 produces 7×5 = 35, 5×7 = 35, 35 ÷ 7 = 5 and 35 ÷ 5 = 7.
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