Pictures, Stories, Activities
- The system uses current brain research to maximize memory. It taps the underlying way the brain remembers. The brain’s cataloging system has a difficult time categorizing numbers because they are abstract. Yet pictures, being concrete, are relatively simple for the brain to store and retrieve effectively.
- Each number is represented by a picture (2 = shoe, 3 = tree, 4 = door). The answer is another picture based on the two pictures in the problem. It sounds confusing, but it is very easy.
Here is a quick example. Let’s take 3 x 4 = 12.
- 3 = tree
- 4 = door
- 12 = elf
When a student sees the problem 3 x 4 they ‘picture’ a tree (3) and a door (4). The answer will be a picture based on a tree and a door. The picture they remember for tree and door is elf. They visualize an elf (12) peeking from behind the door (4) in the tree (3).
Won’t this Confuse a Child?
- This is the number one question we get BEFORE a teacher or a parent uses the system. After most teachers and parents have tried it for a few days, they are astounded at the results.
- The number one comment we get AFTER a teacher or parent uses the system is, “I wish I had known about this system sooner.”
Some teachers and parents worry that ‘seeing’ the mental picture each time a student remembers the fact will slow them down. Once the pictures and stories have been thoroughly learned and practiced, students will bypass them when remembering the fact. The picture and story help the brain’s cataloging system find the answer quickly.
Read a Research Article from "The Educational Therapist" - When Multiplication Facts Won't Stick: Could a Language/Story Approach Work? by Joni D. Mahler, MEd
Steps to Remembering the Times Tables
- SEE the picture of the fact. (Looking at the picture and actually seeing it with your mind’s eye aren’t the same. Close your eyes and ‘see’ the picture in your brain.)
- HEAR the story to help make the picture come alive. (Don’t just listen to the story, ‘see’ the VIDEO of the picture coming alive.)
- DO the activity to anchor the picture.
- PRACTICE the facts to make each picture automatic.