A few weeks ago, I began teaching my fifth graders how to perform various operations using decimals. Two of these operations were multiplying and dividing. After working with my students so far this year, I know that multiplication and division... ESPECIALLY DIVISION... are trouble areas for my students because they struggle with basic multiplication facts. With this in mind, I knew that performing these operations with decimals would be like pulling teeth.
Based on this observation, I decided that I needed to address the basic facts while, at the same time, still teaching on grade level. So, I came up with the Multiplication and Division Challenges.
Basically, every day, the students have 10 minutes at the beginning of each class period to complete as many challenges as possible. Each multiplication challenge consists of facts 1-12 for two numbers. Each division challenge focuses on only one number at a time, but has 15 problems for that number.
(click the image above to view site and try the Multiplication and Division Challenges)
Since I created these challenges in Google Forms I am able to control when responses can be submitted. I have the students come to the page above in our class website and click on their challenge. RIght before the timer starts, I go into the Google Form and I open it up to accept responses. At the end of the 10 minutes, I close the Form so that any responses after the time won't be accepted.
This has been extremely helpful to not only me, but my students as well. It gives me an opportunity to assess where students' areas of weakness are with multiplication and division. It also allows the students to practice their facts so that when we got to the actually instruction and practice for the day, they were able to apply their knowledge of multiplication to help the Multiply and Divide Decimals (5.NSBT.7)