There are some cards that you can automatically discard from the multiplication deck. Simply have the child memorize the rules for these:

• Anything times 1 is itself. (1 times 7 is 7)

• To multiply by ten, add 0 to the number. (8 times 10 is 80)

Once the multiplication facts are mastered, master the division cards, which, like subtraction, should go fairly quickly.

If this is done properly, your child will forever know these facts, just like he knows his name or the fact that grass is green. And it really doesn’t take more than ten or fifteen minutes a day, which is time well spent because future classwork time could very well be cut in half. And his test scores will be higher because he can work more quickly.

Neatness, step by step, and math facts. Work on these three areas of skill and you just may discover that your child is good in math after all!

Deborah L. Reed currently resides in a small bedroom community in Central Texas with her daughter, grandson, and two dogs. She is a retired science and math teacher. Deborah has published more than twenty short stories and essays. Her short story titled “Leah and Her Stuffed House” has been nominated for the 2011 Pushcart Prize award.

Copyright, 2011. Used with permission. All rights reserved by author. Originally appeared in The Old Schoolhouse®Magazine, Spring 2011.

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