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Talking Tables

This CD uses attractive graphics to illustrate the idea of multiplication as repeated addition. For the two times table, this involves counting the legs of varying numbers of clowns or soldiers (never more than 5). At first the questions are entirely oral, requiring children to type in the number of legs or the number of lots of 2, but gradually written notation is introduced as well - first as a familiar addition sum and later using the multiplication sign.

The 3, 4, 5 and 10 times tables are introduced with tricycles, dogs, starfish and bunches of grapes but progress here is more rapid with only one counting level before moving on to multiplication notation.

An additional section gives practice with the 6, 7, 8 and 9 times tables but this is disappointing as it is just a series of table tests. There are no graphics and incorrect answers are just marked wrong with no attempt to provide the correct answer.

The final section of the disc offers each of the tables sung to a choice of four different tunes. Children can sing along with the computer while watching a ball bounce along the tables written on the screen so they simultaneously use vision, hearing and speech - a combination that many people find helps them learn.

Plus points
  • good graphics
  • reinforces multiplication as successive addition
  • singing tables uses a multi-sensory approach 
  • no reading necessary
  • English voice
  • step by step approach good for special needs
Minus  points
  • need to start at the bottom level each time
  • frustratingly slow for more able children 
  • graphics do not cover the whole of each table  (only goes up to 5 for the 2 times table)
  • table tests do not correct wrong answers

Overall Impression
Despite its minus points, this software's well thought out teaching sections and budget price make it a good buy for children who find maths difficult.

Made by Europress

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