This much I know about…learning your times tables

johntomsett

I have been a teacher for 27 years, a Headteacher for 12 years and, at the age of 51, this much I know about learning your times tables.

I feel a little less like a dinosaur this morning. Here’s why. I have not always agreed with the young and distinctly un-dinosaurish Kris Boulton. In this article about lesson planning I think he uses a flawed metaphor and what he argues is plain wrong-headed. I think his latest article, on why children should learn their times tables, is, however, excellent. He writes, “if you simply know that “seven eights are 56” then recalling that fact from our infinitely-capacious long-term memory uses no working memory at all; it liberates a person’s working memory to focus instead upon the more demanding, higher-level ideas.” Common sense, except that common sense is not that common.

I am old-school about some things. There are fundamental benefits to…

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