The Array Model: Multiplication and Division

Jami Smith

The array model, used throughout Bridges, is the subject of “Arrays, Multiplication and Division” by Jennie Pennant from nrich.maths.org. The piece outlines how the array model supports development of a sense of multiplicative relationships and describes how to move students from building multiplication facts and tables to exploring division as the inverse operation of multiplication. The author illustrates simple number combinations and then moves into more complicated number combinations using a blank array.

These arrays easily lend themselves to two of MLC’s free math apps, Number Frames and Number Pieces, which students can use to represent and explore number relationships. Number Frames works well with simpler arrays, as each number is represented with a counter.

Number Frames App | The Math Learning Center

The Number Pieces app is ideal for illustrating and manipulating larger arrays, such as those representing double-digit multiplication expressions and partial products.

The Number Pieces App | The Math Learning Center

We hope the apps spark additional investigations with the array model!

Jami Smith is a media specialist for MLC.