I don’t know how many of you did math grids in school, but I loved them!!! Our school called them Facts Masters. We would practice in class to get faster and then once we finished under the time and got them all correct, we were allowed to go to the “Facts Master Room” and test there. I remember those days well. It was so much fun to see how fast I could be and make a perfect score.
As we were doing some math word problems yesterday, I realized that Mister Bull didn’t have his math facts memorized. He makes 100% on nearly all his papers, so it didn’t dawn on me that he didn’t really know them. He was doing math the long, long…looooong way. His problem read something like this – Tim laid 36 square yards of carpet in three rooms. Each room had an equal amount of carpet. How many square yards are in each room? The conversation went as follows:
MB says: I don’t get it? The answers right there…36.
Me: No. Read it again.
He takes a moment to read and then says, “OH!!! That’s easy-peasy. 12!”
Me: Okay. So how did you get to that answer? (Fully expecting to hear 36/3 = 12)
MB: Well…12+12=24+2=26+10=36. Easy. Peasy.
Me: *stunned look*
Say WHAT?!?!?! I proceeded to call my husband and tell him what just happened. Meekly he says, “Oh. He does math like his father!” WHAT?! How in the world do you get the right answers when you do math like that? And that’s when he explained that Mister Bull doesn’t have his facts memorized, just like he didn’t. So he figured out another way to do them. Only problem is…they are doing the correct math, only processing it in a completely whacked out way – in my opinion.
That’s when I decided to create these Facts Masters sheets for him to practice. Mister Bull loves races, mazes and anything that *challenges* him. And I think these are just the thing to spice up our math work!! So why not make them St. Patrick’s Day Math sheets? So these will be a new addition to the themed printables I am releasing.
Don’t know what math grids are? Here’s a brief rundown of how they work.
- In school, we started in 2nd grade with just addition and subtraction, but you can start whenever you feel your child is ready.
- The grids are lined out and ready for you to insert numbers (0-9) across the top and down the side
- I like to call out the numbers randomly, so he can’t sit and look at them to figure out the answers.
- You start out with 10 minutes to complete the grids. That will be either just addition and subtraction or all four grids when they are ready.
- After they complete the grids within the allotted time frame and make a perfect score, you reduce the time to 9 minutes. Once they successfully complete that, you reduce the time to 8 minutes. Then 6 minutes, 5 minutes, 4 minutes and 3 minutes. I suppose you could go to 2 minutes, but that is a bit fast!
I have also created a certificate you can use for those who complete the grids in the time allotted. That way they can track their progress and see just how much they have improved. Plus…it’s just fun to get a certificate when you accomplish something you’ve worked hard for!
As an added bonus, you could offer incentives for each milestone, building up to a BIG prize when they complete the grids in 3 minutes. This could be going for ice cream or a movie at the theater, which is a huge treat in our house. Whatever you decide, just make it fun!!! Have the kids give you ideas of things they would like to have or earn as rewards too!