Common Core and Math Fact Practice

Can I just say that I love finding videos of great teaching practices? Lately, in my world, math facts have been a hot topic. Do you time your students on math facts or not? There is research that supports both sides of the issue. With many states having adapted the Common Core standards, I think teachers are often confused and sent mixed messages about this. I've been in education long enough to see things come, go, and come back again. Common Core is a great shift in the way we teach and the way our students are required to think and apply what they know. Let's not just throw out everything we know. We still need students to "know" their facts. In fact the standards even state that multiplication facts are to be done by memory by the end of 3rd grade. I think there is definitely a happy medium in what we've been doing and what we need to do with the new standards.

Assessing math fact fluency is done in a variety of ways. You can certainly see if a student is fluent in multiplication by listening and watching them participate in a math game of sorts. Completing a practice page where multiplication has to be applied in a variety of ways (and in a timely manner) is another way. Weekly or daily timed tests are another way. With a timed test you can see if time is the issue or if knowing the fact is the issue. I've taught 5th grade where I had students know the process to a problem but did not know their facts. In that case I did not consider them fluent. Yes, I agree that if a student knows 10 math facts quickly then they would know 50 of them quickly. Great teachers look at a number of things when deciding if a student is fluent. Looking only at a timed test would not be considered exemplary teaching. Consider the student.

I found a great video on Teacher Tube that shows how a 3rd grade teacher implements daily fact practice in her classroom. It's great. Check it out. It's something I wouldn't have thought of. The beginning is about her daily routines, but then she shares math fact practice as a part of that.

This video is directly from The Teaching Channel and in no way endorses my blog. It is purely an education resource for teachers.

Thanks for this. Math is a challenge for my students. I am lucky to get to multiplication because they struggle with addition and subtraction. Hopefully doing some of these activities from your blog and the video clip will help with the acquistion of math facts and also the understanding of them.

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