Can you imagine memorizing one hundred of anything? When you ask your child to learn addition facts through 18, by memorizing, you are asking them to memorize one hundred facts. Your child might feel overwhelmed and loose confidence in their ability to be successful in math.
Fortunately, there are a few strategies you can share with your child that will help in learning basic addition and subtraction building confidence in their mathematical ability. These strategies are not rules. A strategy may or may not help your child, if a strategy helps, wonderful, if not, try another one. Your child may just surprise you and develop interesting strategies of his own. One strategy is not any better than another one; you are exploring strategies that produce the correct results.
Counting-On and Back Strategy:
For example you can add 4 and 6. Start with the bigger number; in this case 6. Now count on four more numbers: 7, 8, 9, 10…4+6=10. A subtraction example would be 10-4, start with 10. Now count backwards four numbers: 9, 8, 7, and 6…the answer is 6!
Doubles, Doubles+1, and Doubles+2 Strategies:
7+8…can you think of a double that is close to 7+8? (7+7= 14)
How much more than 7 is 8? (1)
So, 7+8 is 15
Fact Family Strategy:
If your child knows that the numbers 4, 6, and 10 are related they can face a problem such as 10-4, with the experience of knowing that 4+6=10. Maybe the answer is 6?
Making Ten Strategy:
What if your child has a problem like 6+7?
Try: 6+4… (Easy 10)
So 7 is how many more than 4… (Easy 3)
What is 3 more than 10…? (Easy 13)
And then there are those wonderfully creative strategies you and your child will come up with around the kitchen table.