The National Curriculum requires pupils to recall multiplication table facts up to 12 x 12, and this is assessed in the year 4 multiplication tables check. In year 3, the focus should be on learning facts in the 10, 5, 2, 4 and 8 multiplication tables.
While pupils are learning the individual multiplication tables, they should also learn that:
- the factors can be written in either order and the product remains the same (for example, we can write 3 x 4 = 12 or 4 x 3 = 12 to represent the third fact in the 4 multiplication table
- the products within each multiplication table are multiples of the corresponding number, and be able to recognise multiples (for example, pupils should recognise that 64 is a multiple of 8, but that 68 is not)
- adjacent multiples in, for example, the 8 multiplication table, have a difference of 8As pupils develop automatic recall of multiplication facts, they should learn how to use these to derive division facts. They must be able to use these ‘known division facts’ to solve division calculations, instead of using the skip counting method they learnt in year 2 (2MD–1). Pupils should learn to make the connection between multiplication and division facts as they learn each multiplication table, rather than afterwards.Language focus: Language focus “4 times 5 is 20, so 20 divided by 5 is 4.”
It is useful for pupils to learn the 10 and 5 multiplication tables one after the other, and then the 2, 4 and 8 multiplication tables one after the other. The connections and patterns will help pupils to develop fluency and understanding.