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Learning the 6, 8 and 9 times table: tips and tricks

6, 8 and 9 times table: tips and tricks
Tips and resources to help primary-school children master the 6, 8 and 9 times tables, with advice from experienced educator and teacher John Bald.

The "tricky" group: learning the 6, 8 and 9 times tables

These times tables are trickier than the others because each item in the table is more likely to involve changes in two columns (tens and units) rather than one. I usually teach them in this order: 9 times table, 8 times table (followed by the hardest multiplication table to learn, 7) and finally 6 times table.

Learning the 9 times table

Once children know 10s, this is fairly easy, as the second digit reduces by 1 each time until we reach 10x9.

The 11x of every table is easy ,as it just adds 1 of the table to 10s, in this case 90, giving 99. The only tricky one is moving into the 100s column with 108, and this comes with a little practice.

Learning the 8 times table

Take away 2 from the units digit this time, and the digits repeat themselves after 5x8 = 40.

The final one is the only tricky one. My primary school teacher once told us as a curious fact that 5 16s were 80, and for some reason this stuck in my mind; 6 16s (or 12 8s) are then easy to remember as 80 + 16 = 96. When working on the 8 times table with children I usually concentrate carefully on the 88, which is easy, and then add 8. Taking care over this is well worthwhile, as it gives a sense of pride to children when it sticks.

Learning the 6 times table

... and then there were 6! The 6 times table is a little trickier than the other even-numbered tables, though not quite as awkward as 7, so it comes as a relief. Once again, the final numbers repeat themselves after 5x, so approach the table in two halves if this seems easier.

6, 8 and 9 times tables practice worksheets and games

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