Lady Joanna Thornhill (Endowed) Primary School

Learning for the Head, Heart and Hand

Times Tables

How we teach Multiplication Facts (Times tables) 

Fluency with multiplication facts is vital so that when solving problems children are not slowed down by having to stop to work out a fact (taking up their working memory). At Lady Joanna we teach multiplication facts (times tables) in a systematic way inspired by the Maths Lead’s visit to Shanghai.*  Children are introduced to the meaning of multiplication in Years 1 and 2, but in Years 3 and 4 they undergo a systematic programme to develop fluent and automatic recall of multiplication facts.   Key components of the approach include: 

  • Ensuring the children use commutivity (5 x 6 = 6 x 5) to reduce the number of facts that need to be learnt. 

  • Links are made from the start to division facts so that these do not need to be learnt separately. 

  • Whole class chanting of tables (this draws on important research by Stanislaw Dehaene (The Number Sense) relating to the link between auditory memory and the learning of times tables. 

  • Daily practice sessions which systematically introduce additional facts as earlier ones are mastered. 

  • Additional practice as required so that all children can move forward together. 


We know that all children can learn their multiplication facts when taught in a rigorous and systematic manner!  

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