Multiplication and Division

Multiplication and Division is the next step up from addition and subtraction, and should be taught with a graduated spiral approach throughout the elementary school years. Both concepts can and should be introduced together, as early as second grade.

Multiplication and Division

The topics of Multiplication and Division should be taught in stages – starting with a conceptual understanding of the operations, then learning the multiplication tables in three stages, multi-digital multiplication, division, remainder and regrouping, and finally application to word problems and higher order numbers.

Related Posts

2018 Singapore Math In-Depth National Conference and Standards Institute

2018 Singapore Math In-Depth National Conference and Standards Institute

This summer, I had the privilege of presenting at two of my favorite…

Why is it Important to Draw Bar Models Correctly

Why is it Important to Draw Bar Models Correctly

In the previous post, we talked about two common mistakes in drawing bar…

Common Mistakes in Bar Models

Common Mistakes in Bar Models

Bar Modeling is a very powerful heuristic in Singapore math. Representing unknown quantities…

What is Singapore math?

What is Singapore math?

One of the questions we get most often is “What is Singapore math?”…

Bar Model example – Before After

Bar Model example – Before After

Here is a bar model example for “before and after” type of word…

Multiplication and Division – Mastery

Multiplication and Division – Mastery

This is the final post in our series of blog posts on teaching…



Join our membership program. Start your Free Trial!

singapore math resources

Our full-year Singapore math resources are aligned with major Singapore based textbooks, such as Math in Focus, Primary Mathematics etc. These resources, including lesson plans, videos, worksheets and more, are available for unlimited access (all grades) in our membership program.


Teaching Multiplication and Division

Students start to learn about multiplication and division in second grade. Before building up fluency in multiplication tables, students should first understand the concepts of multiplication and division. To this end, we use pictorial representation to help with understanding, e.g.

  • Finding the total number of objects arranged in rectangular arrays with up to 5 rows and up to 5 columns, using sequential addition.
  • Learn about the complementary task of division where we have a total and we want to break it up into groups. For the same division equation, there can be two different interpretation.
  • Understand the difference between odd and even numbers, and that groups with even number of items can be divided into two equal groups.

Once these basic concepts are understood, multiplication tables are introduced in three stages:

  • 2, 5 and 10
  • 3 and 4
  • 6, 7, 8 and 9

Next, we would extend these concepts to multiplying multi-digit numbers and introduce basic division – first without remainder, then with remainder. Also division with regrouping is introduced.

Finally, when students are fluent in the two operations, we would apply them to word problems with the help of bar models. In addition, we would also expand our skills to higher order numbers with more digits and thus more practice with regrouping.


Free Worksheets

Join our mailing lists to get a set of unique Singapore math cheatsheets!


Join our membership to get all our math resources for grades 1 to 5

Scroll to Top