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How can you help students learn multiplication?

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Quick Answer

One way to help students learn multiplication is to make a multiplication grid with them. Study the patterns in the multiplication grid together, and practice the lower numbers first. Point out correspondences between formulae, such as the correspondence between 3 x 5 = 15 and 5 x 3 = 15.

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Another way to help students learn multiplication is to play a multiplication-based card game fashioned on the card game War. In War, players flip over cards, and the player with the higher number collects both cards. In the multiplication version, the cards have questions such as, "What is 3 x 4?" The first player to answer a question correctly gets the cards. The winner is the student who gathers all the cards in the end. Students new to multiplication might need to consult the multiplication grid while playing the game.

Certain mnemonic tricks are useful for learning multiplication. For example, to memorize the 9s section of the times table, students should practice holding both hands in front of them and spreading out their fingers. When asked to solve 9 x 3, they should bend down the third finger. The two fingers in front of the bent finger and the seven after it correspond to the number 27, which is the product of 9 x 3. Students should bend the fourth finger for 9 x 4, and so on.

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