Times tables are a crucial element of Maths and are applied to so many different areas. Here at Pennthorpe, we encourage children to learn their times tables with our award system that begins in Year 2 and carries on through the prep school. The award requirements are:

Bronze Individual times tables in order verbally
Silver Individual times tables out of order verbally
Gold (online) 144 questions (each fact) as either division or multiplication. Tested online with 10 minutes to complete and 134/144 required.
Platinum (online) Square numbers up to 12 squared and the associated square roots, cube numbers up to 12 cubed, all prime numbers <100, recognise factors for numbers <100 and recall all prime factors. 90% required with no set time limit as number of questions can vary from test to test.

The recommended time for a response to ensure fluency is under 3 seconds, so recall does need to be quick! In school, children are tested verbally for their awards, making sure that they don’t just list of the times table but also have the ‘1 times 2 is…’ as well. We don’t specify the order of learning tables, however we recommend 10×, 2×, 5×, 3×, 4×, 8×, 6×, 7×, 9×, 11× and finally 12×.

Some top tips for supporting your child work towards their times table awards:

  • When working on Bronze and Silver awards, stick to one times table at a time to minimise confusion
  • Start with chanting and writing them out in order
  • Keep reminding your child that 3 x 4 is the same as 4 x 3 – this effectively halves the number of tables facts
  • When you’re trying to speed up recalling tables introduce some games
  • There are many websites with games for learning times tables – a particular favourite here at Pennthorpe is Hit The Button
  • Your child will have a TTRockstar account set up through the school that they can use for practice times tables. The website uses an algorithm that works out which times table your child should focus on, moving on when it recognizes fluency.
  • For practice of out of order tables, or a mix of multiplication and division questions, the website me.uk gives both online practice and printable worksheets
  • The 2s, 4s and 8 times tables are doubles of each other – with many common answers – 2×8=16, 4×4=16, 8×2 = 16
  • The nine times tables can use the ten times tables and work back or compensate – so for 5 x 9, think  ( 5 x 10 ) – 5 = 50 – 5 = 45, also note that the digits in the answer always add to 9.
  • The 3 and 6 times table are tricky. Do the 3s first then the 6s – expect these to be more difficult and make an allowance in time
  • The 7 times tables are hard but if you’ve done the other tables first you’ll find you’ve encountered most of the 7s already elsewhere – such as 7×4=28, 7×3=21
  • 8×7=56 is the hardest times table! – but look at the numbers and notice their in order, so 56=7×8 might be easier to remember