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Creative ways to learn your times tables

We believe that anyone can master their times tables. It really is just a question of practice, repetition — and a little creativity! Here are some fantastic ways to liven up your child’s times tables practice, all of which will fit into your busy daily routine.


Tables tennis

In this fun game of speed, you serve an imaginary ball by asking your child a tables question; your child returns it by answering a times table question as fast as they can!

If they’re correct, ask another tables question, and keep the rally going until they answer one incorrectly or get to a target you’ve set in advance (such as correctly answering 10 questions).

You can adjust the difficulty of the questions to encourage them as they progress through the game. See how long they can keep the rally going!

‘Time’ tables

If you taught your child to tell the time using plastic or cardboard clock faces, you can easily adapt it to teach them their times tables as well!

Ask your child to multiply the two numbers that the hands are pointing at. You can keep one hand static while the other is moved around the face to practice a particular table, or move them around more randomly for the more advanced learner.

A Tables Fable

Create a ten-minute tale about different numbers embarking on journeys (such as ‘Timothy Three’ or ‘Susan Six’). As you tell your story, incorporate multiplication questions into it.

For example, ‘Susan Six has to answer a question to be allowed to cross the bridge… what’s three times six?’.

If your child answers correctly, the character can progress, and if not, they have to find an alternative route and answer a different question.

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A pack of cards

Carry a pack of cards with you. If your child is learning a single table, ask them to pick a card and multiply that table by the number on the card. For example, if they’re learning the 4 times table and they pull a three of Hearts, they’d work out 3 x 4.

Of, if your child is already a multiplication master, ask them to pull out two cards at random and multiply the two numbers on the cards together. For example, pulling the eight of Spades and the two of Diamonds would be 8 x 2!

Travelling with tables

Do you walk to school? Or perhaps you catch the bus? You can use anything you see around you, such as lamp posts, hedges and road signs, as inspiration for times tables questions.

For example, if you can see 2 buses and 6 people walking by, you could ask your child, ‘what’s 6 x 2?’. The possibilities for questions are truly endless!

Support learning with technology

Along with these suggestions, apps such as DoodleTables can be helpful. With thousands of interactive exercises and games tailored to your child’s strengths and weaknesses, it’s the perfect way to help your child become a multiplications master!

DoodleTables is available as part of a DoodleMaths subscription, available via our website, in the Apple AppStore, Google Play Store and Amazon Appstore.

For more times tables tricks, be sure to check out our other blogs:

  1. Easy ways to learn your times tables
  2. Which order should you learn times tables?
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