One day with this activity and my student declared, “I get it!”
There is a brad with a piece of elastic, some packing tape across the top and the bottom, and sticky notes. Just an effort to be more kinesthetic.
I call this “Pyramid Facts”. It was my way of making the memorization of multiplication facts more manageable and less overwhelming. First the students learn a song for counting by threes and a song for counting by fours as well as a “trick” for nines. Then the students and I fill in the “easy” facts on the multiplication grid. We know how to count by ones, twos, threes, fours, fives, nines, and tens so this goes rather quickly. What I love is that the students are always surprised by how much they know! There are only nine squares open on the grid that need to be memorized. Thanks to the commutative property of multiplication there are actually only six facts to memorize (7×8 is the same as 8×7). I call these six facts the Pyramid Facts. We spend time memorizing these and students begin to gain confidence in their ability to know the multiplication facts. (Remember that while learning these facts, students should begin by seeing the correct answer so that a correct mind picture forms. On my pyramid I put sticky notes. The students first practice by saying the facts aloud then I take the sticky notes off and they again say the facts aloud while replacing the answers.)