Is there a better way to teach fact families than by using Cuisenaire Rods? If you have access to them, they’re great for both addition/subtraction and multiplication/division, especially used with a centimeter ruler as a number line.
If you don’t have Cuisenaire Rods, you can achieve much the same thing with coloring.
Explanations are given for coloring using a centimeter ruler. I’ve done this both ways and they both work. There’s a template for easily printing and cutting paper centimeter rulers so you can mass-produce them.
These activities begin with using the ruler and Cuisenaire Rods to illustrate the reversibility of multiplication and division, and how a student’s knowing a single equation means he knows the three related equations.
There is also a lot of demonstration and practice with fact families, including explanations of how students can use them to work out problems they don’t know and completing fact families given one equation. Fact families are used in solving word problems.
The first 2 activities and the paper rulers are on legal paper.
These pages include a very detailed, illustrated discussion of the phrasing used in introducing division and fact families, and the distinction between partitive and measurement division.
Common Core Standards:
3.OA.1: “Interpret products of whole numbers…”
3.OA.2: “Interpret whole-number quotients of whole numbers…”
3.OA.4: “Determine the unknown whole number in a multiplication or division equation relating three whole numbers…”
3.OA.6: “Understand division as an unknown-factor problem…”
3.OA.7: “Fluently multiply and divide within 100…”
Subjects: Math, Basic Operations, Arithmetic
Level: Grade 3, Review for Grade 4
Duration: 13 pages, many problems, 4-7 days
Answer Key: Yes, to show how the activities are intended to
be done. Most of the problems are basic
multiplication/division and don't require answers.
A Smartboard 10 file is also included. Click on the .zip file icon, and you can open the PDF and Smartboard files separately.