Picture of Tables of 6, 7, 8 and 9 in your hands
At the age of 8 I had to learn the multiplying tables. I've never been good at memorizing lists or tables. It was easy to learn the tables from 1 to 5 but from 6 to 9 it seemed to be way more complicated... A year later I heard this trick on the radio and it saved my life. Since then I've taught it to many other kids. I passed such a bad time at school as I was the only one in my class who didn't know the tables so I hope this trick was useful for any parent or teacher who knew any child in this situation


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Step 1: Ascribe values

Picture of Ascribe values
- First put your hands in front of you as shown in the drawing
- In each hand, ascribe a value from 6 to 10 to each finger

Step 2: How to multiply

Picture of How to multiply
Step 1

Choose the numbers to multiply. Example: 7x8

Step 2

Put together the fingers whoses values you want to multiply.

Step 3

Now count the touching fingers and the ones below them. The number you get will be the tens. Example: 5

Step 4

Now multiply the fingers above the ones touching of the left hand and the ones in the right hand. The number you get will be the units. Example: 3x2=6

Answer: 56

**In some cases you will get a number of units bigger than nine, in that case sum both quantities**

Example: 7x6

- Touching fingers + the ones below  ->  3

- Fingers above the ones touching in left hand  ->  3
                                                                                                               3 x 4 = 12
- Fingers above the ones touching in the right hand  ->  4

                                                                                3        (tens)
Now we've got 3 tens and 12 units  ->                  + 12      (units)
                                                                                  42     (final result)

It is best technique but suppose I want to multiply 7 x 5 how to do it using this technique

why don't you count by 5s

misko13 (author)  kamleshvbhatia4 months ago

With this technique you can only multiply the numbers from 6 to 10, 6, 7, 8, 9 or 10 times as the values you ascribe to the fingers go from 6 to 10. You can always multiply 7x6 and subtract 7.

7 x 6 - 7 = 7 x (6-1) = 7 x 5

kavitap1 month ago

O' wow its really great! now I would be able to teach my son tables of 6,7, 8, 9

nfarhana3 months ago
Thanks! This is awesome♡♡
TerryKC5 months ago

Thanks so much for posting this. At 49 I still have moments where I struggle with them and this will help a lot.

LilyStorm1 year ago
Thank you!
ppearl LilyStorm5 months ago
lmadere7 months ago

Thank you very much for sharing and teaching this old dog a new trick! ;) I knew of a trick with 9's that I learned on TV years ago after I learned the hard way, but I never knew this trick with the lower #'s. I am so happy, because I will be able to teach my 5 year old grand-daughter! :) I LOVE spending time with her we have so much fun learning we make games out of everything and this seems like a lot of fun too, so she'll enjoy learning. It's so much fun when you can pass on a easy way of learning something. I remember when I taught my youngest daughter the 9 trick, her eyes got so big and surprised like, WOW! lol Thank you once again. :)

marknluke9 months ago
how we can find the 8s table example 8 multiplied by 4 ?
misko13 (author)  marknluke9 months ago
I don't lnow any trick for the 8s table using the hands, but I know one writting it.
If you write in one row the numbers from 8 to 0 repeating the number 4, and in a second row the pair numbers beginning with 0 you get it:

Row 1: 8  7  6  5  4  4  3  2  1  0
Row 2: 0  2  4  6  8  0  2  4  6  8

           10  9  8  7  6  5  4  3  2  1

Another "trick" is this. If you know how to multiply 2 times any quantity:

8 x 4 = 8 x 2 x 2 = 16 x 2 = 32
Cogtoys11 months ago
This is a great instructable. For the advanced math instructor -- not me -- this would be a great way to explore base 10 system and the distributive property.
I was taught that whatever # like 4 you put down yor 4 finger the before it is tens afer 1s get it got it good :) smiley sorry I just practicing typing fast :) :() :o
amarifey1 year ago
This great for both multiplication and fine motor skill development--perfect for OT and Sped. I've taught the nines for years but just relearned the others. Thank you.
MVRENUKA1 year ago
Amazing. i was struggling to teach table to my7 year old son. Thank you very much. You made my job easier.
jeaninfla1 year ago
Sounds like it works, I have needed an answer to this problem for years ! Thanks.
asingh1021 year ago
Awesome haha :D.. Thanks alot..
Vonnie21 year ago
UGH! Still trying to understand... Other examples please? I know my multiplication but my son struggles memorizing the totals even if he gets the point of multiplication. If he says 6 x 6 - he would actually have to group dots into 6 of 6.... then count it
Ah! i've got it working! thank you so much!
I still remember spending many tearful hours memorizing multiplication tables in third grade... Although this method seems rather slow, solution-wise (as opposed to memorized recollection/regurgitation), and would likely not have gotten me through my timed tests, it would have been a comfort to know that, in a pinch, I could "look up" the answer on my hands!
omg I love you lol ,, this is amazing!!!! I could never remember.. have to add that I am 45 yrs old ..... weeeeeeeeee I can multiply :D
shazni1 year ago
Yey! you are in the finals! hope you win as you have helped many with this method! :-)
hertzgamma1 year ago
Nice to share, but this is all found in google:


Rules say: "Each entry must be entirely the original work of the persons identified in the entry;"
misko13 (author)  hertzgamma1 year ago
Those two links show a post published on Sep 12, 2012, I published this instructable on August 29,2012. That post has been made using these pictures I made using photoshop. Some other people also published it in their websites:

As I say in the first step " I heard this trick on the radio". I made the step by step pictures and explanations. When I entered the contest the Instructables staff should have seen that. I guess that if they had thought this instructable didn't follow the rules they wouldn't have accepted it.
Then, you're kind of the pioneer. Congratulations, this is a realy helpful instructables!
My apologies, I did not want to dishonour you and I'm sorry if I did!

You have my vote :)
misko13 (author)  hertzgamma1 year ago
It's all OK! Didn't feel dishonoured at all. You just needed an explanation...
Thanks for the vote :D
themoose641 year ago
Its cool how no matter what numbers you multiply this method works. Nice instructable.
Allykat1 year ago
WOW, I wish I had known this when I was a kid but I will definitively share this with my kids Thank you, than you, thank you.
wapatterson2 years ago
Thank you so much for posting this! I'm going to use it with my daughter who has a large problem with math and this will help her immensely!!!
misko13 (author)  wapatterson2 years ago
The smile in her face will be priceless!
My mind has just been blown! I didn't think it could be that easy, but I sat here doing a bunch of equations and they all came out right. Pretty awesome!
shazni2 years ago
Thanks a lot! i learned the 9 times method from another instructable and taught it to my daughter....we were both grateful and taught it to her class mates too! yay! now
this...oh how wonderful....i would definitely vote for you on the hands down educational contest! 5 stars!
I knew about the 9s trick (even though I learned it waaaay after 3rd grade when it would have been the most useful haha) but I had no idea there was a similar way for the 6s, 7, and 8s. Even though it still requires some multiplication is seems like it's still a really nice trick for those struggling with multiplication.
azharz2 years ago
Wow, thanks for this because my Maths test is near.
I used that before when I was in elementary school. Great Idea!
r4f2 years ago
Great Instructable!
I must confess I prefer (my children) to learn them by heart, so that it finish to be assimilated as something that I've always known...
When one studies knowledge management a little bit, one meets the competency matrix.
Applied to multiplying tables it can be seen this way :
  • 1st step: before the age of 8 (depending on countries), pupils don't know  that they don't know the multiplying tables. It's an unconscious incompetence
  • 2nd step: they go to school and the teacher speak about this notion and they discover that they don't know how to do it. It's then a conscious incompetence;
  • 3rd step: they learn, forget, learn again, practice, re-re-learn them and finally they master them. It has become a conscious competence;
  • 4th step: 3 years later, they learn far more complex notions, like mathematical equations, and use the multiplication tables every day (even outside of school), generally without wondering what they need to use as a mathematical knowledge. It's now an unconscious competence;
But if one teaches them a way to avoid learning them by heart (with such a workaround)I fear it takes far more time and efforts before it becomes an unconscious competence.

I think what matters more is to find a way to make pupils learn them while playing instead of teaching pupils a way not to learn them.
misko13 (author)  r4f2 years ago
Thanks for your comment. I agree with you, it's way better to know them by heart, but in my case that was too much for that age. As time passed by I ended up learning them by hearth as I used them everyday at school. Now I'm studying civil engineering and I don't even realize I'm multiplying ;D
r4f misko132 years ago
I fully agree with your quote "that was too much for that age"
There are already so many things to learn before being really in need for multiplication tables... 

CementTruck2 years ago
I swear I live in Truman's world (and I'm Truman - from the movie "The Truman Show"). I was just remembering how some of my classmates used to use this trick at school and I never understood how it worked. I always wanted to know but just never googled it. And now here it is in my google reader...a mere day or so after I my walk down memory lane.