I had one of those moments recently with my third grader. He does not appear to have his facts memorized. Please note that he has completed daily lessons with Facts First. This child should know his math facts. We were all tired of having him ask us what they are.
So this is my plan. I am sharing it in case you are having one of those moments with your child.
1. I explained to him that it was the end of the line. We were no longer going to tell him the answers to math facts. He was old enough to know them. He was going to memorize them or he would be looking them up on this sheet of paper from then on. I handed him a multiplication chart.
Please note: this speech is more for you than your child. I personally felt empowered.
2. I told him he would be now be taking timed tests every few days. I printed out several times tables ahead of time, and put them in a folder. That way I would be able to present them on a moment's notice. Here is another set, and an online multiplication speed test as well.
I am copying the following from About.com for you.
The best way to learn the multiplication facts is by one fact family at a
time. Always begin with the 2's, the 5's and the 10's, when these are
mastered, move to the squares (sometimes referred to as the doubles)
which are 2x2, 3x3, 4x4, 5x5, 6x6. Then move to the remaining fact
familes, 4,6,7, 8 and 9. Never start with random facts. Do not provide
random fact sheets until there is a strong comfort level with the fact
families. Practicing random facts rarely leads to permanent learning.
Stick with the above strategy and students are more apt to learn the
3. I printed out another multiplication chart that we would color in when we mastered each fact family.
I realize this is not rocket science and you probably already know this. But, I just wanted to share my renewal plan with you. I will keep you updated on how it goes. So far just having the table printed out has made me much less aggravated,and has put the responsibility back on him. I am hoping he will tire of looking them up on the chart and begin to memorize them.
Enjoy your week,