Lesson plan

Hands-On Multiplication

Students get hands-on practice playing this math multiplication game with their hands!
Need extra help for EL students? Try the Strategies Lead to Understanding pre-lesson.
EL Adjustments
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Need extra help for EL students? Try the Strategies Lead to Understanding pre-lesson.

Students will be able to multiply up to the ten times table.

The adjustment to the whole group lesson is a modification to differentiate for children who are English learners.
EL adjustments
(5 minutes)
  • Remind students about their work with multiplication.
  • Explain that it is useful to have multiplication facts memorized. Have students brainstorm reasons why this is true.
  • Tell students that today they will practice their multiplication facts in a fun game so that they become memorized.
(10 minutes)
  • Review with students various strategies for multiplying up to the ten times table. These may include making a model, drawing an array, drawing groups, etc.
  • Complete several examples using the strategies you have worked on with the students.
  • Explain that you will model a game for them to play with a partner.
  • Ask students if they have ever played the card game War. Review rules for playing this game as a group. Tell students that instead of using cards, they will use their fingers to play multiplication war.
  • Choose a student to model the game with you. Have the student hold their hands behind their back while you do the same. Tell the student to hold up a number of fingers without showing you. Explain that you will do the same.
  • On the count of three have the student show the amount of fingers held up as you do the same. Tell the students they will treat your hands and the students hands as the factors. If the student is holding up 5 fingers and you are holding up 4, then the factors will be 5 and 4.
  • Tell students to quickly multiply the two factors together. Whoever says the product first gets a point.
  • Game play will continue until the teacher declares that the time is up.
(15 minutes)
  • Have students join together to work in pairs.
  • Allow the students to play the game. They should keep track of the points earned using their pencil and paper.
  • Encourage students to use mathematical language such as factor and product.
  • Have students switch partners after five minutes and continue to play the game.
(10 minutes)
  • Have students complete the 1 Minute Math Multiplication worksheet. When complete, have students choose several problems to draw models of on the back of the worksheet.


  • Encourage students who need a challenge to attempt to solve some double-digit multiplication problems by drawing models on the back of their worksheet.


  • For students in need of support, have them focus with a partner on only playing the game up to the five times table.
(15 minutes)
  • Circulate as students play the game to check for accuracy.
  • Collect the worksheet to check for mastery.
  • Have students take out their whiteboards and whiteboard markers.
  • Call out some multiplication facts and have students write their answer on their board. As they display their answers, note the students showing proficiency and those that may need additional practice.
  • Include a variety of question types surrounding the multiplication facts. For example, call out factors and students write the products. Write down an equation with factors and products, and have students determine if it is correct or not. Call out a product and have students write the factors.
(5 minutes)
  • Gather students together. Ask them how they think that they could improve their skills at this game.
  • Encourage students to play the game at home and during their free time.

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