Learning the Multiplication Table – A Lesson in Mastering the Multiplication Facts


Summary of Lesson Plan:

In this lesson, students will learn eight simple rules for mastering the times table. Students will be asked to complete multiplication worksheets that support these concepts.

Australian Curriculum Links:

Mathematics (Number and Algebra):

  • Level 3 – Recall multiplication facts of two, three, five and ten and related division facts (ACMNA056)
  • Level 4 – Recall multiplication facts up to 10 × 10 and related division facts (ACMNA075)


Lesson Plan Sequence:

Orientation: 2 minutes


Students attention at the smart board showing the eight rules for mastering the multiplication table from the website below.


Learning the multiplication table can be scary because there are so many facts. But what if there were some tricks that made memorizing multiplication easy? What if these tricks used the addition facts we already know, so that instead of memorizing we could get the right answer for a multiplication problem quickly? Share with students that you’re going to give them the secret tricks for making multiplication easy.


Provide each student with printed multiplication tables and charts.

Guided Discovery: 20 mins

There are many extra tricks for learning the multiplication table. Use these rules to help get to a product quickly until your multiplication facts are memorized.

Number 1:

The facts are the same no matter what order the arguments are in (the first times the second gives the same result as the second times the first). This cuts the number of multiplication table facts in half effectively. This simply means that A x B = B x A.

Write an example on the white board:

  • 3 x 5 = 15 is the same as 5 x 3 = 15


  • 6×7=42 is the same as 7×6=42


Number 2:

Because of a property called identity, any number times one is itself, and because of the first rule, that eliminates an extra fact from each of the other multiplication tables as well.

Write examples on the white board.

  • 6 x 1 = 6          3 x 1 = 3
  • 1 x 6 = 6          1 x 3 = 3


Number 3:

For times ten multiplication facts, add a zero to the end to get the product.

Write examples on the white board.

  • 6 x 10 = 60
  • 3 x 10 = 30


Number 4:

Multiplying by two is the same as doubling addition. If you know a few basic addition facts, the times 2 multiplication table is easy, and again, keep in mind the first rule, and this knocks the Nx2 problems from all the other tables as well.

Write examples on the white board.

  • 6 x 2 = 12  is the same as 6 + 6 = 12
  • 3 x 2 = 6 is the same as 3 + 3 = 6


Number 5:

Times 4 multiplication table can be solved by doubling twice.

Write examples on the white board.

  • 6 x 4 = 6 + 6 + 6 + 6 = 12 + 12 = 24
  • 3 x 4 = 3 + 3 + 3 + 3 =  6 + 6 = 12


Number 6:

To solve for problems in the 5 times table, simply skip count by fives. (Tell students to refer to the multiplication chart)

Write an example on the white board.

6 x 5 = ?

In this example, you have to skip-count by fives up to the number 6. That should be 5,10,15,20,25,30. So 6 x 5 = 30. (Ask students to check it using the multiplication chart)

Number 7:

The product for a times 9 multiplication table fact is found by taking the number and subtracting one, use that number in the tens place of the product, and for the ones place start with 9 and subtract the digit you just found for the tens place. Another way to think of this is that for any nines table fact less than 100, the sum of the digits is always going to be be nine.

Write examples on the white board.

  • 6 x 9 = 54 or 6 x 10 = 60 – 6 = 54
  • 3 x 9 = 27 or 3 x 10 = 30 – 3 = 27


Number 8:

There are a few remaining multiplication table facts that don’t fit the rules, and these need to be memorized. Fortunately most of these are easy. 3×3=9, 3×6=18, 3×7=21,3×8=24, 6×6=36, 6×7=42, 6×8=48, 7×7=49, 7×8=56, 8×8=64. (Tell the students to underline these in the multiplication chart)

Now ask the students to copy the eight rules displayed on the smart board.

Exploration: 15 mins

  • Let students ask questions about the eight rules discussed earlier.
  • Distribute multiplication worksheets and let the students answer them.


Assessment Ideas:

  • Collect answered worksheets.
  • Use the multiplication chart to check the worksheets.



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