Over the years, we have accumulated billions of times tables answers from children around the world. From that data, we've formed a sophisticated understanding of how pupils internalise each multiplication and division fact and how they begin to understand the underlying concepts. We then deconstructed all the tables up to, and including, the 12s and reassembled them several times, until we created a highly effective sequence to learning the answers.
How does it work?
Learners play in the Garage or the Arena and begin with our first set of questions (1x10 up to 4x10). When they can answer at a rate of 20 per minute, we'll introduce the next set of questions. As learners progress, ATM brings in commutativity, missing number questions and division facts. So the first 9 levels, look like this:
Level 1 : 1×10 to 4×10
Level 2 : 10×1 to 10×4
Level 3 : A mix of 1 and 2
Level 4 : 10×?=10 to 10×?=40
Level 5 : ?×10=10 to ?×10=40
Level 6 : A mix of 4 and 5
Level 7 : 10÷10 to 40÷10
Level 8 : 10÷1 to 40÷4
Level 9 : A mix of 7 and 8
Then the process repeats for 5×10 to 8×10 and once more for 9×10 to 12×10 before moving onto the next table and starting the process again.
Once they have a few tables under their belt, ATM combines them for a while, to consolidate recall, and then brings in a fresh table. The process repeats - all the while giving plenty of opportunity to revisit prior learning, by interleaving earlier tables and giving due weight to the facts we know learners struggle with the most - until your learner has become a Rock Star at all the tables!
How do you move on a level? By scoring at a rate of 20/minute (i.e. 20 in 1 minute, 40 in 2 minutes or 60 in 3 minutes).
My learner isn't moving up a level even though they're scoring at the right rate, why is that? The difference between levels can sometimes be so subtle (see levels 1 to 9 above) that it looks like they haven't moved up a level even though they have.
Do all learners have to start with the 10s? At the moment, yes they do. For that reason, ATM is particularly well suited to times tables novices of any age.