I am substituting for a teacher who is out on maternity leave. I start Monday. I taught Educable Mentally Handicapped students 14 years ago when I lived in Arkansas. Does anyone know if the spec ed terms are still the same? I now live in PA on the border of NY and am teaching in NY. I observed the teacher for the last three days and will get access to the students IEPs on Monday. Anyway, these kids are obviously EMH. They have all failed one to two years, and read at least 2 years below grade level. None of them have their times tables memorized. I remember struggling with this years ago, and am now facing it again. Has anyone out there been successful with teaching EMH students their mult. facts? Yes, I realize that they can use calculators, but a real understanding of numbers and basic operations is essential to moving into division, decimals, and fractions. I also realize that simply memorizing mult facts doesn't help internalize the relationship among operations (adding, subtracting, multiplication, and division) but it sure makes it faster and less frustrating! HELP! PLEASE!!

The terms are still technically the same--educable, trainable, etc. are still used when diagnosing MR. However, their use within school systems has really fallen away when talking about classes/students. I've seen these classes called things like Learning Adjustment classes, etc. How old are these students? Inverse relationships might help them start to understand this very abstract math. I student taught in a similar class where the students had memorized many of their facts--they first had to skip count (i.e. 8, 16, 24, 32...80) for every number family, then they had to go through flashcards. They did worksheets, games, etc. as well. However, it was primarily rote learning--they did not have an understanding of the mathematical principles behind it. BUT, when we worked on word problems, that mathematical understanding started to come into play. We would look for the key words (i.e. in EACH day, or for the ENTIRE week, etc.) that told them if we were multiplying or dividing.

I have tutored a developmentally disabled (borderline IQ) student for about 4 years, year-round, and had her in class one year (5th). It took several years to master multiplication facts. I stuck with lower level strategies - demonstrate multiplication as adding (3x6 means adding 6, 3 times), then practice, practice, practice. We also sang multiples - 3, 6, 9, 12 ... to the tune of Frere Jacques. We tossed a ball and alternated multiples with each catch. We threw a ball into a tub and she got a point for landing in the tub and another point for getting the correct answer to a fact. We played multiplication card games (two players each flip two flash cards, the winner has the larger product). I used the simple correct terminology over and over - factor, product. I never once allowed the use of a calculator. She is now in 7th grade. What ages are your students?

They are ages 11-13. Some are in the fifth grade. Some are in sixth. Lots of teachers say they can't learn their mult. facts so just let them use a calculator. What about the times that they don't have a calculator. As I understand it, even if there is a mod. on their IEP that says they can use a calculator, they still can't on some standardized tests.

I am sure some of the teachers I am referring to in the previous post who say they can't learn mult facts are thinking to themselves,"Who does SHE think she is, they haven't learned the times tables by 5th and 6th grade, and she is going to try to do it in the last 5 weeks of school?!"

I have had several students who had not mastered multiplication facts by 6th grade. I don't think, unless you devote many many class periods to it, that it is likely to achieve in one period a day, however. Tutoring was very helpful.

I have them for 5 class periods. They only leave the resource room twice a day. So I am going to give it a go...I will let you know if I am bald by June 15.

I taught fifth grade for 2 years, and I found that if you make learning fun, they are more interested in learning. I would have the students make up songs or poems for the multiplication facts. There are also songs already out there about the facts. You might want to try Dr. Jean. She has songs for everything! I would also give them an incentive for learning them. You could have the students build a sundae! I am doing this right now with my first graders so they will learn their addition facts. I give them a test on each set of facts (1's, 2's, 3's, etc.) They will earn a part to the sundae for every 100 they get. You could even lower it to every 85 or whatever you feel would be mastery for your students. My students really worked hard at home because they wanted to earn their sundae. Some of the parts include: a bowl, spoon, vanilla icecream, chocolate icecream, strawberry iceream, sprinkles, nuts, cherry, etc.) I made a bulletin board of the sundaes so the students could actually see and be proud of their accomplishments.

Our class loves the lizard crawl. Count by 7s. Touch your head and say 7. touch your neck and say 14. Touch your left shoulder with your right hand and say 21. Touch your right shoulder and say 28. Touch your stomach and bend over a bit and say 35... touch your right hip and say 42 Touch your left hip and say 49.. Touch your knees and say 56... touch your feet and say 63 touch the floor and say 70.... Doesn't matter which shoulder or hip you touch first, just do it the same each time. the shoulders are 20s, the hips are 40s. We have stories that go with some of the seven facts also. 7x8 = 56 count 5,6,7,8..... 7x7=49 49ers is the name of a football team we watch on TV and play like you have two teams with seven players.... 2s are easy just add the other number.. 2x3 = 6 the same as 3+3 = 6. Most students know how to count by fives. Use the finger trick to teach 9s. That works great. 1 times any number is always the same number. So wow! you have mastered the 0s, 1s, 2s, 5s, 7s and 9s....I teach 8s last because all you have left by than is 8x8.... At some point have a chart 1 to 100 and show the students how many facts they have learned. You need to be enthusiastic and use lots of praise. When working with flashcards, if she got it right she got to stamp it design. You will need a ink pad and a small stamp. I used a red ink pad to make it prettier than blue or black. I used many ideas like are stated above. Practice practice and more practice. And many many different ideas. Always went back to flashcards. Like above we earned a banana split. We had a white board and for really hard facts we wrote them and said it together as she wrote it. 7 write and say it together, times write and say, 8 write and say. equals write and say. 56 write and say. Write it five times...erase it and have her write and say it....

More weapons for the arsenal to win the war! Kristen, Who is Dr. Jean and where can I get the songs? Thank you in advance! And thanks to all the others for excellent advice! More weapons for the arsenal to win the war!!

Dr. Jean is a retired teacher who makes up songs about topics we teach to students. She travels around the country presenting at workshops for teachers. The songs are primarily for younger kids, but there are some for older kids as well. She teaches a lot of language arts and math skills, but she also teaches some science and social studies as well. She has songs that teach the letter sounds, vowel songs, how to write each number, parts of a flower, parts of an insect, bones, the water cycle and so on. She probably has about 10 different CD's out with the songs. I have most of them, and I use them everday with my students. She has a website with lots of ideas too. It is drjean.org. You can buy the cd's from her website. You can only get them from her. They are not sold in stores. I think every teacher should go to one of her workshops. You really learn a lot about how teach all types of learners. She has done a lot of research about how the brain works.

Dr. Jean is phenonmenal! I've written about her many times on this site. Jack Hartmann is another retired teacher who does similar songs. I'll link ya up to his multiplication CD. Click here for Jack Hartmann's Multiply by Music CD I LOVE the idea of incorporating the movements into the memorization of the multiplication facts! I'm gonna steal it for memorizing additon facts with my babies! They understand the concept of addition now, but are still slow to get answers. Now that I am sure they understand the concept, I want them to memorize the basics.