We have a bucket full of these little rubbery colored animals. At times I've wanted to throw them out since it seems that no matter how high I hide them, with Sylvia around, they end up all over the house anyway. But they are great for counting games, color games, teaching organizing and categorizing and even science and nature.

Isabel helped me trace these circles onto paper and make up categories for Sylvia to sort.

colors

herbivore, carnivore, omnivore

no legs, four legs, six or more legs

air, land, sea

A recent goal of mine is to do more math with my children that is out of their text books. This activity counts! (notice the no pants, we have a slightly less strict dress code here than your average school.)

Behind Isabel's back, Joey and I proudly call her "Rainman." She memorizes everyone's birthdays, she knows our phone numbers and address, even our old address, and has all of her multiplication facts up to the elevens and then the fifteens memorized. All without any help from me.
Luke on the other hand has inherited my up-in-the-clouds brain. Not necessarily a bad kind of brain, just difficult to keep numbers in. We've gone through multiplication flashcards, worksheets, I've even tried mnemonic stories or rhyming to help him know his multiplication table. After a day of feeling like he's made some progress, once we try again the next day, it's as if all of the numbers have fallen out of his brain again.

"Kuku" is a Japanese method for memorizing multiplication tables by using a rhythmic chant. Japanese students are supposed to learn "Kuku" by heart in the second grade. For example, "two times three equals six" is said as, ...

I think Genki-Math had this in mind for their youtube videos. They just make me giggle.

"Maths Games - Which style do you prefer, this or the Hip Hop style of the 11 times table? To try and make math a little more interesting, here's a simple song of the 8 times table. If you know anyone who's learning their ti..."

But seriously, does anyone have any suggestions, ideas or resources on memorizing multiplication tables?

We have our Math-U-See books for our Math curriculum, but I know that if I was more confident and capable with my math skills, I could teach my children math without using any kind of bought curriculum. If you are creative enough, there are plenty of inexpensive math games and math activities for kids, around the house, online, and even at the grocery store that you can play together.
Just this morning I helped Sylvia make a birthday chain to help her understand how many more days until her birthday.

Here are some of our favorite math games. (yes, cereal.)

What are some of your favorite math games or activities that you do with your kids?