Learning Multiplication and Division

Learning Multiplication and Division

We know that maths is the least favourite subject of children. The arithmetic problems create a huge problem for children, and they find it hard to grasp the basics. Though they would be eager to solve addition and subtraction sums, we realise that this enthusiasm soon fades off when they start learning multiplication sums and division. Both multiplication and division are important maths skills that children must master at a young age.

Children may not be aware of how multiplication and division will be used in their everyday lives. As they grow up, they will understand how multiplication sums and division will be required to measure ingredients while cooking/baking or making money transactions. So, to introduce kids to these mathematical concepts, here are some effective strategies that we could follow. Through this, we can make learning maths an interactive activity and develop their interest in the subject.

Ways to Teach Multiplication

If we can convey the basics of multiplication to children, it would be easy for them to understand how to divide sums as well. Since division is the inverse of multiplication, it is crucial that we equip children with a strong mathematical foundation at the beginning. It is best to teach multiplication in terms of repeated addition as children are already familiar with addition. 

Suppose you have to find the multiplication sum of 4 and 3; it would be too early to make them memorise the multiplication tables as it may develop a disinterest in them when they fail to remember the tables correctly. Therefore, it is wise to make them learn through repeated addition. By teaching them that 4 ✕ 3 is the same as 4 + 4 + 4, they will slowly learn to calculate. 

We can also introduce interesting multiplication activities such as arranging objects like buttons or paper clips in rows and columns and thus asking them to find the multiplication sums of certain numbers. In addition, we can use flashcards and practise skip-counting to learn multiplication faster.

Solving Division Problems

Children would find no difficulty in sharing candies with their friends or dividing an apple into 4 equal parts to share with two of their neighbours. Division seems so simple in such situations. Then, why is it hard for them to learn how to divide sums during maths classes? Once they have attained the idea that division can be related to the concept of sharing, it will be easier for them to solve complex division problems. 

Suppose if we ask children to solve 15 ÷ 3, it will be tough to explain things to them in terms of numbers alone. So, we must narrate a situation where one of them wants to share 15 oranges with 3 of his friends. The question is to find out how many oranges a person will get. By supplying one orange each to all the 3 friends until all the 15 are given, we can discover that each of the friends has 5 oranges in their hands. Similarly, we can teach them how to divide sums by giving such simple problems and asking them to group them into different sections.

Through the activity of making them divide the beads into different tins by giving them a certain number of beads, we can easily explain the concept to children. Besides, many printable division worksheets are available for children to practise. In this way, they will quickly learn to divide sums and develop a liking for the subject.

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