Instead of buying or making poplar cards, which are cards filled with small holes containing math problems on them, why not have the students make their own flash cards? This will save time and money and the students will have a vested interest in what they’ve done. You can use index cards and have the children write the multiplication, subtraction, addition, or division facts. They can put the problem on the front and write the correct answer on the back. The students can even drill themselves on the math facts without having teacher involvement at all, except for supervision.
Math is not the only subject that students can make flash cards to help them study. History and science can also be incorporated by having the children write the question on the front of the card and the answer on the back of the card. For those students who have bad handwriting, you can have another student help them or you can do it yourself.
If you want to go one step further with flash cards, you can make class games that will be fun for the students and also give them a chance to learn in a different way. A popular game that is played throughout classrooms in the United States is Jeopardy. While playing Jeopardy, a child will be able to see the answer and then must phrase the question in their own mind. This takes the learning sequence up a notch on Maslow’s learning hierarchy. The child will have to use critical thinking and then think backwards from answering a question to forming a question.
Another popular game that will help with higher thinking skills is to play match up. Here the child has to match up the answer and the question cards. All the answers and questions are laid face down in a square. The child can turn the card over and then turn over another card to see if it matches. Through this they have to use the knowledge and then find the matching question or answer. This system has been used for a while in special education rooms where attention deficit disorder is prevalent. They are more active than regular lesson plans and through osmosis the children will learn the material.
By making education more fun for the student, you will create an excitement in the classroom that will help teach the students faster. At the same time, you will not be forced to lead them through the drudgery of having to do paper, pencil, and book exercises.