Thursday, March 29, 2012

Elementary Activities: Skip Counting Songs

by Deborah Pace Rowley
It is always challenging for kids to learn their times tables. I have tried to help my own children as well as many students at school. We have tried flash cards, math games and times tests. Over the years I have found that Skip Counting Songs are a very effective way to solidify times tables in young minds. They are catchy and easy to remember. They can be recalled quickly. I still sing Skip Counting Songs with several 5th grade students whenever I am working with them on their daily math homework.

There are many Skip Counting CD’s on the market. But I really like this version that is available for free on You Tube. Skip Counting Songs - YouTube

They were created by a teacher and his third-grade class. They are cheesy and they don’t have flashy graphics or high production value. But I still like them because they have the times tables set to songs that we already know. Because kids already know The Birthday Song or Row, Row, Row Your Boat, there is less to remember. The focus can be on plugging in the correct numbers instead of trying to learn a new song. And these songs are also easy to recall when needed.

Check out the songs at the link above. For best results, just work on one song at a time. Watch the song several times with your child, then you can sing it together in the car as you travel to and from school or while doing chores or other activities that are part of your daily routine.

For even more learning and fun, make a video of your own. Film your child singing the skip counting songs while doing different activities. Here is our video of Katie singing the skip counting song for the 3 times tables. We had so much fun working on this together.  Now if I could only get “Happy 3, 6, 9, 12”… out of my mind!
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