I was hoping to do this post last week,
but of course time got away from me.. I am excited to do this post because this is a topic that I am
very passionate about and something that I believe is important for students to
learn at this grade level!!

I teach 4th grade and many of my students
come into 4th grade not knowing their multiplication facts, because of the Math
Standards in 4th grade, this causes many of my students to struggle with long
division and multiplication. It is my goal
every year that all of my students memorize their multiplication facts and know
them like the back of their hand, by the end of the year. I am going to explain below two ways that
I motivate my students to learn their multiplication facts!

**#1 Weekly Multiplication Timed Tests**

About the 3rd or
4th week into school I begin weekly multiplication timed tests. I give these timed tests 2 days a week
(normally towards the beginning and end of the week). My tests have 20 multiplication
questions. I allow my
students to get 2 or less wrong to move on to the next multiplication test. If they do not pass, they take the same
test the next time. If they pass,
they receive an ice cream scoop for that fact. There are many different
versions of the Multiplication Facts Ice Cream Rewards on TPT, but I use the
freebie from Michelle Harper called Multiplication Facts Freezer Frenzy (click the name
and it will take you to the link on TPT). Then about half way through the year (usually in December), I give
my students an ice cream party to celebrate. Depending on which facts they have mastered, depends
on how much ice cream and toppings they will get at the party. Below is a picture and freebie of a
poster of what ice cream/toppings students get at the party depending on which
facts they mastered. There is also a freebie for the note that I send home to
parents about donations for the ice cream party.

Click here to download this poster for FREE!!

Click here to download a FREE note home for volunteers/donations for the party!

After the party,
any student's who have not mastered all of their multiplication facts continue
to work on them. I normally give
students who have mastered their facts a break until January when they start
memorizing their division facts. I will be doing another post in the next couple of weeks to
explain how I use division facts the 2nd half of the year to help my students
learn their division facts!

This is a sample of my multiplication timed tests that are sold in my TPT store. Click here to see them in my store!

**NOTE:**I know everyone's opinion on if these tests should be graded is different, but I do take them for a grade. Instead of taking both test grades each week, I only put the highest timed test grade in the gradebook. This way if a student bombs the first test, they still have time to study and get a higher grade on the test later in the week.

**#2 Fluency Math Center**

Since not all
students will practice and memorize their facts at home, I feel that it is
important to give them time in the classroom to practice these facts. I do not want to take away too much
instructional time, but still realize how important it is that my students know
their facts. So, I have
created a Math Fluency center where my students practice these facts 2-3 times
a week. Since this is a
center that I use all year, I wanted to make sure there were many options for
my students for practicing these facts. I'm trying to avoid having my student's get bored from the center
this way. Below I am going
to list the different activities I have at my Math Fluency Center. You can introduce all the activities at
the beginning of the year or add activities throughout the year to bring
excitement and interest to this center throughout the year!

**1.) Multiplication Flash Cards**

I allow my students to do flashcards on
their own or with a partner. Many of my
students love this activity because it gives them a chance to work with another
student in their center. I buy my
flashcards from the dollar tree. This way I can stock up on a lot of flashcards and I don't feel
like I am spending a lot of money on them!

**2.) Multiplication Apps**

I am lucky to
work at a school be that has 1:1 technology for each student. This means that half of the technology in
my classroom is Ipads. Of course, my
students LOVE using the ipads and anything on the Ipad is a game to them. I have downloaded many different Ipad
multiplication fact games/ flashcards for free for my students. I put all of these in a math fluency
folder. Here are the
names of some free ipad games/flashcards that you can download if you have
Ipads in your classroom:

-Math Cards!!
(These are online flashcards for all operations)

-Fast Facts Math
(Great way for students to practice facts)

-Times Table Quiz
(Multiplication Trainer)

-Multiplication
for Kids (This one has a wizard in it and many of my students loved that!)

-Math Flash Cards

-Math Monsters (A
lot of my students really loved this app too!)

The only thing
about the free versions is that some of them only let students get to a certain
level or use it for a certain amount of time before it stops them, but you are
able to purchase the rest of the app if your student's really like it! There are many more free and inexpensive
multiplication apps too if you look in the app store!

**3.) Math Wrap Ups**

I purchased a
couple of these for my classroom a couple years ago and my students love them!
It is a great way for students to practice their facts on their own and self
check to see if they got the answers correct. These can be purchased at most teaching resource
stores but I have also posted a link below the picture of where you could purchase
them on Amazon. You might be able
to shop around and get them cheaper though!

**4.) Multiplication War**

Most students
know how to play the game of war, which makes explaining this game pretty easy!
I normally teach
this to my students one of the first couple days of school. This is a game that they can play at home
with their parents too because all they need is a deck of cards!

Here are the
directions:

1 1.) One student deals out the cards facedown to the 2 players. Each player
should have the same amount of cards in a pile in front of them. Players may not
look at their cards!

2.) One student says flip and both students flip over their cards. Students must
then multiply the 2 numbers together and the student who yells out the correct
answer first gets to keep the cards.

3.) Students continue this process until one student has all the
cards or students may stop at any given point and whichever student has the
most cards is the winner!

Here are just a
couple ways that I help motivate my students to learn their multiplication
facts! This year, I am
going to try adding in daily multiplication facts practice at home for
homework. I will update my
blog later with how that goes. Remember to check back in the next couple weeks for a post about how I use Division Facts in my classroom!

Comment below if
there are any other good multiplication fact motivators that you use to help
your students learn their multiplication facts. I am always looking for new ideas :)

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