BUILDING FACT FLUENCY
Fact fluency is the basic skill in math. It is most often used when facts are repeated. Mental math is a way to develop this skill. It is also a tool used to quickly recall basic facts.
Fact fluency in math is the ability to recall addition, subtraction, multiplication and division quickly. This ability is done mainly from memorization and does not require much thought when giving answers. Typically we like to see students give answers in about 2-3 seconds to consider this skill mastered.
Why is fact fluency important?
Fact fluency is important for students for several reasons. The first is because it aids in solving more difficult problems later on. Fact fluency gives an excellent foundation of basic skills. Students who excel at fact fluency are also more likely to be successful in math related tasks in the future. And perhaps the most important reason it matters is because it builds confidence in math skills that are needed for all aspects of success.
How do we teach fact fluency?
There are several appropriate ways to teach fact fluency. In fact, multiple methods are often needed to keep students engaged and actively practicing their skills. One common method is through timed tests. While these are an effective tool in teaching fact fluency, it is imperative that teachers also evaluate the understanding of the skill as well. This means that students are not only able to recite facts like 2 x 2 = 4, but that they also can explain how they got the answer of four. Here are a few of our favorite resources that we use to teach fact fluency to our students.
Our Fact Fluency Essentials
This is a 18 page PDF including a variety of activities to facilitate success in early numeracy. We know from experience that students need a strong foundation of numeracy to be able to master fact fluency later on. This is the first building block in skill teaching. All activities are based on numbers 0 to 20 and utilise ten frames for one to one correspondence. You can print these in black or white or fun, bright colors for your classroom. We like to laminate these to make sure they last through all the little finger grabs.
One of the most important skills for our students is knowing their multiplication facts. So much of future math depends on the ability to solve these basic equations. The multiplication facts flashcards give our students plenty of practice. This is a 25 page PDF including 2 different styles of flashcards to help build fluency with Times Table recall. These are great to laminate and secure with a binder ring so students can practice during center times or for the early finishers.
As we stated earlier, being able to quickly recall the answers to addition, subtraction, multiplication and division is the name of the game for fact fluency. This means that students need fun ways to practice being quick. The Speed Race Bundle is the perfect resource for this. You can print them and use them individually or create a workbook for your students. It is intended to be used within Numeracy , 'Speed Race’ is a program of daily practice based on a 5 day cycle . Each resource focuses on a specific area of number; addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. It is everything you need in one resource.