We have been having so much fun with the many outstanding products that we have been able to review as a part of our involvement with the Schoolhouse Review Crew this year. Our most recent review was Times Tales from The Trigger Memory Co. and let’s just say that the fun still continues!
When I first received notice about being selected for the review, I have to admit that I was a bit skeptical about the program itself. I felt myself take on a pious attitude with thoughts about not wanting my children to be recalling seemingly non-related stories to answer multiplication facts 20 years from now. It was in this ridiculous self-righteous moment that the light bulb went off. In my aha moment, I began to think about just how often we use various memorization techniques to recall information, such as taking long passages or lists and putting them to music or hand motions.
Years ago I attended a memorization workshop by a famous individual known for memorizing a 32-digit number on the spot and reciting it back to the crowd! He taught us how to take a known building of our own choosing and dividing it into different segments that will later be recalled in a specific order. We then mentally placed various objects into each location and therefore were able to memorize them and recall them. I still have the first 20 presidents memorized from this method! I reflected upon how effective that was, more than a decade and a half later.
I decided to get a bit of a head start on the program before having the opportunity to set up the account. I went ahead and downloaded the FREE Times Tales Sample Video Download, covering the multiplication facts for 9×6, 9×7, 9×8 and 9×9. In approximately 15 minutes both The Boy (Kindergarten) and Sweetness (1st grade) had committed the facts to memory!
At this point I was simply blown away; and we hadn’t even started yet.
It took a bit of time to complete the download, as the files were fairly large. The following day, we spent about an hour going through Part 1. Although the product review was intended for Sweetness, both Bookworm Beauty (5th grade) and The Boy were enamored with the presentation.
The initial minutes of the presentation introduces each number as a character. Once that is covered, there are several “stories” that are shared, each involving two of the characters. For example the number 6 is the 6th grade class and the number 4 is a chair… the story involving 6 and 4 is that the 6th grade class played musical chairs for 24 hours. The story contains all of the pertinent information… 6, 4, and 24… and then it is put together for them (6×4=24).
As soon as Sweetness and The Boy realized that the story contained the math facts, it was a game to them to figure each one out. Once the stories were memorized, the children were also able to use the same elements to figure out the division facts.
I remained impressed.
Also included in the downloads were additional printable worksheets. There was a fun worksheet, flashcards, dice templates to roll and multiply, and tests. We went through them only to discover that Sweetness was successful in memorizing her multiplication facts!
It is recommended that you wait at least a week before moving on to Part 2. We waited just over a week. Sweetness was eager to learn the remaining multiplication facts and did just as well as she did in Part 1.
I remember learning my multiplication facts in 2nd grade, through route memorization. It worked. I learned. It wasn’t fun. I also know for a fact that I did not learn them all in under a few hours! It has been a couple of weeks since we went through the presentations and it is safe to say that they are committed to memory… Sweetness can still recall the facts!
The Digital Download is only $19.95 (normal price is $21.95) and the best part is that they are mine for good. When The Boy is ready to review them, we will still have them. Hands down, I think this is the most fun and definitely the easiest way to commit the multiplication facts to memory.