As teachers we want our students to develop a strong understanding of the multiplication facts. If you live in a state that uses the Common Core standards (or some variation of them), foundational understanding of multiplication begins in the 2nd grade. Students work with equal groups of objects and then transition in 3rd grade to representing and solving multiplication problems within 100.

This month I am going to be focusing on different strategies that I use to engage students when teaching multiplication.

One strategy that I like to use to introduce multiplication concepts is using a read aloud to engage students.

Reading literature is one of my “go to” hooks for opening a lesson. You may already have a list of read-alouds that you use in your daily lessons. Today I wanted to share a short list of 4 books that support multiplicative understanding or addresses student attitudes about multiplication. Check them out, as I really enjoy using them with students.

7 x 9 is a great introductory book to multiplication. Wilson, the main character has trouble with multiplication. This book takes you through Wilson’s journey of learning the facts. It is a great read that students can relate to, however, the facts are not introduced explicitly. To check out this book click here: 7 x 9 = Trouble!

Have you checked out Amanda Bean’s Amazing Dream by Cindy Neuschwander? In the book, Amanda (the main character) loves to count, however, she is not interested in learning multiplication. After her wild dream, she realizes that she is unable to count all of the items. At the end of the book, she returns to school ready to learn multiplication. This is a great introductory book for kids because they can relate to the story line and may realize that multiplication is a better approach for counting large quantities groups of objects, as Amanda discovered. To check out this book, click here: Amanda Bean’s Amazing Dream

It is Kangaroo’s birthday and he wants someone to play with. All of the animals are preoccupied doing multiple things. At the conclusion, he realizes that they are using multiplication to plan a celebration for him. This book is a good one in that it infuses multiplication facts throughout the story line. To check out this book, click here: Too Many Kangaroo Things To Do!

Mike, the main character in the book tries to avoid washing the dishes until they multiply and his dad catches him in the act. This book embeds multiplication facts throughout the story to calculate the number of dishes that Mike needs to wash. This is an entertaining story that will engage your students in the plot. To check out this book, click here: Stacks of Trouble

Check and see if your media specialist has any of these books available in your school. What books do you use to introduce or support multiplication in your classroom? Please share in the comments section. I would love to add some more books to my math library.

Shauna Isenhour says

To teach multiplication and doubles, I used "Minnie's Diner." My third graders loved it.

Greg says

Great books! Keep them coming : )

Margo Fraser says

100 Hungry Ants by Elinor Pinczes

Greg says

Another great math read aloud. Thanks for sharing Margo!

sister Heather says

Measuring Penny

Greg says

Thanks for sharing Heather : )

sister Heather says

The Kings Chessboard, Father Tang

Ramona M says

Sad…none of these books are in my public library.

Anonymous says

The Sir Cumference books are great for math concepts too.

Greg says

I love the Sir Cumference book series!

Greg

Donna Boucher says

Great post, Greg! Incorporating literature really engages students, and learning occurs when the mind is engaged.

Donna

Math Coach’s CornerGreg says

Thanks Donna! I believe that incorporating reading and writing into your math lessons is very important. In this case, I like using read-alouds to introduce key concepts and asking students questions to reflect on the math connection.

Greg