Mid-Year Multiplication Memories

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For many classroom years, February has been a mid-year month - time to take a rear view assessment of kids growth. Time to start serious strategizing to get to year-end goals.

Which brings me to a childhood memory.

When I was in third grade, my family moved and I changed schools mid-year. My new teacher told me I was seriously behind because I didn’t know my times facts.  Just like that, in a blink of an eye, I traded in carefree evenings for an endless firing line drill on multiplication facts. 

I didn’t understand the facts and I didn’t know why they were such an urgent need. I just knew I had to get them to stick in my head. As fast as I stuffed them into my memory, they fell out. To my 8 year old self, this was a scary deal and I was worried I wouldn’t make it. 

I’m wondering if other adults have similar memories. If we do, how can we use these memories to help kids at these mid-year mirror moments?

Too bad I didn’t have multiplication.com in 3rd grade. I’m pretty sure my fact experience would have been a fun challenge vs a traumatic ordeal.