Supporting Students with Their Basic Math Facts

Basic Facts are the bane of my existence right now!  

My 5th graders are currently working on multiplying multi-digit numbers.  They understand area models as well as the standard algorithm.  However, their accuracy is negatively impacted by their lack of basic fact fluency!  And not knowing their facts is slowing them down!  My students are using repeated addition and counting on fingers to figure out those facts they should know quickly.  It is frustrating for them (and me, watching them).  

So, here is what we are doing to learn those facts to mastery once and for all!

learn facts

With Technology...Xtra Math
I have set up accounts for my students on Xtra Math.  If you are not using Xtra Math, I encourage you to check it out.  It is free to use via any internet browser, and there is an app for purchase if you prefer.  

XtraMath works to get students to solve their basic facts within 2 seconds.  They log into the program a few times a week, and complete a session.  Sessions last about 5 minutes.  The repetition, approach and encouragement from the teacher on the screen, really help my students.  They also love to see their squares turn green on their mastery grids.  One of the things I like the most is that the format is simple and clean- and can appeal to any age level.  (I hate when sites with great activities have immature graphics and don't look age appropriate.) I love the teacher reports as I can see the progress and accuracy of my students at a glance.  

My students are logging their time each morning during our universal breakfast time.  Quick and easy!  

Without Technology...Good Old Fashioned Flash Cards

Flash cards are easy.  Parents can use them.  Kids can use them.  Low tech is best sometimes, and sometimes we just need to drill the skill to build our speed!

I created a set of basic fact flash cards (in black and white as well as color by fact family) for my students and their families to use.  I have run sets off for them, punched a hole and put them on a binder ring.  They now have a set at home, and one in their desks.  We often practice by making a yes pile and a no pile for the facts we know or don't know.  Then we focus on the ones we don't know quickly.  It has really helped!

You can pick up the flash cards in my TPT store!

Learning math facts

I hope you can find them useful!

I'm confident that with this extra focus on basic facts, we will be fluent and accurate mathematicians in no time!

How do you help students learn their facts?
Math Facts

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