Teaching Times Tables
The current National Curriculum states that children should know their times tables up to 12x12 by the end of Year 4. Knowing the Times Tables inside out is essential for moving on to most other areas in mathematics; including division, fractions, decimals and percentages.
The DfE says that the check is part of a new focus on mastering numeracy, giving children the skills and knowledge they need for secondary school and beyond. The purpose of the Multiplication Tables Check (MTC) is to determine whether Y4 pupils can recall their multiplication tables fluently (being able to answer times tables questions accurately and quickly, without having to work out the answers).
In life, we use times table and division facts almost every day in many different ways:
- 6 people are coming for tea. Each person will eat 2 burgers. How many burgers do you need to buy?
- A ticket costs £3. How much would it cost to buy 5?
- You need 50 apples for a party. 8 apples come in a bag, how many bags do you need?
Children who know their times tables facts will be able to answer questions more quickly and be able to focus on using other maths strategies in more complex problems rather than being slowed down by multiplication. Knowing times tables can also increase a child’s confidence levels, as this part of the question becomes easy.
For this reason we have signed up to Times Tables Rock Stars for years 1 to 6. This is an interactive website which enables children to practise their times tables and compete with other children across the school. The idea is that children work their way through the times tables at their own pace but in a fun way.
We need all children to succeed at their Times Table Challenge and therefore we will continue to work on learning them within school, but the support you can give at home is crucial for your child’s success. Children should be encouraged to play The Times Tables Rock Stars as frequently as possible from home.