If you have a 3rd grader, you are probably in the midst of helping them study their multiplication tables.
Since practicing those can get a little tedious, I thought I would share some simple study tips we use so my 9 year old can prepare for his weekly multiplication test. Luckily, we have gotten into a good routine of studying each week by using some helpful tips.
Each Friday, his class is given a pretest on the weekly number. The most recent being the 7’s. He will then memorize and practice multiplying by 7 for the week, ending with a test on Thursdays. He usually does fine with his studying but I like to help out in the following ways.
Our Simple Study Tips for 3rd Graders:
1. Flash Cards
Each week, I make him a set of flash cards for the current number they are working on. Usually, he keeps the flashcards by his bed and goes over them each night. Sometimes, he will bring them downstairs and have his brother test him with these too. Since his brother loves playing teacher, this is an easy way to have some practice.
I like to leave reminders around so I tape a list on the bulletin board of his desk. These are just there so he can glance up while doing his other homework. I figure, the more he sees the facts, the more they will sink in.
3. Post Its
Speaking of sinking in, I also bombard him with more facts written on Post-Its and taped to the back of my car seat. Between tennis, piano and the various other reasons he would be in my car each week, he gets to see the multiplication facts right in front of him. Not pretty I know, but it gets the job done!
Yes, you might have noticed that the list on his desk and the Post-Its are yellow. Well, many years ago, I remember from some videotaped study guide that yellow is supposed to be a color that stimulates memory. For that reason, I have always made a point to use yellow when possible. Of course, when I was about to write this post, I figured I would look on the internet to see if this yellow theory was believed to be true. I didn’t find much but then came across the following website:
Sure enough, they mentioned that yellow helps to “activate your memory” and “stimulates mental activity” among other things. The site lists all the colors and explains the effect of each one. You should check it out.
5. Practice, Practice, Practice
Of course with all memorization tasks, repetition is key. Our school recommends several websites that my son practices on.
One is www.ixl.com where we have a log on from the school to sign on and practice each week. Your school probably has a list of recommendations as well.
In addition to that, I also print out a few practice tests from http://www.math-drills.com/. If you click on the “multiplication” box in the blue section at the top and choose “five minute frenzy charts”, you can scroll down and print the chart you need – example “multiply by 7s”. There are 5 or 6 different practice tests for each number. We usually print a few and then I time my son while he works on them. Normally, we do these on Wednesday nights since he final test is on Thursday.
With all that practice, he does pretty well on his final test each week and is hopefully learning some helpful study skills in the process.
With all the studying, don’t forget to refuel with something healthy! My kids love to snack on apples dipped in peanut butter or our favorite banana muffins.
Here are a Few Additional Study Resources:
*Please note that this post contains affiliate links. I will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on my links below (with no additional cost to you).
This book of timed tests is great to carry with you. You never know when you can squeeze in a few minutes of study time.
If games are more your thing, check out this multiplication card game for some variety.
Do you have any simple study tips for kids?
I’d love for you to follow along so you don’t miss a post!
Subscribe by email – HERE