For years, I have been trying to incorporate daily math facts practice into our schedule, but with no success . I have seen my kids struggle with math problems often not just because they didn’t understand a new concept but because they hadn’t memorized the facts. Well, last week, we gave it another try and this time, its sticking (well at least for now).
I have let them play math facts games on the computer and that does help, but I found that it was hard for me to track how they were doing (with the freebie software I use). Flashcards were never really effective for us (well because I didn’t do them regularly). I have made some file folder games and those are useful, but again, I really felt that daily, structured practice was the key, so…………………….
I came up with Math Facts Practice Centers (same idea as my Quraan Learning Center, really).
Instead of giving a drill sheet, I made everyone their own math facts practice file folder center.
On the outside, I stapled a progress chart so that we can check off mastered facts (you can find one at TJ on the multiplication page (its got an ayaah from the Quraan on it related to multiplication–just a heads up for non Muslim visitors)).
In the inside, on one side I stapled a plastic page protector and inside goes the current drill sheet (plus behind it the previous ones can be stored). On the other side is a study sheet with the facts and their answers that they are working on. As their time increases, we “lose” that and then there is also a time tracker so their times can be recorded. Many resources have put a goal such as 3 minutes on a page of drill, but I found out that the more they did them, the 3 minutes was a low goal, so now they shoot for around a minute or so to complete the facts. My seven year old is hanging with the big kids and I am so glad we are doing this now with the younger ones, so insha Allah, maybe they won’t struggle for as long.
Masha Allah, it started with a bang (even my oldest sons were interested in it, though to a lesser extent than everyone else). And although its lost some of its “umph” we are STILL at it masha Allah. I think it really helps for them to have their own little center…………………….