We began our study of multiplication by thinking of equal groups and repeated addition. Our class read Amanda Bean's Amazing Dream and talked about the reasons why we multiply. (It makes counting much more efficient!) Students used candy corn to create equal groups and multiply. We talked about the "x" meaning "groups of" when you multiply. The numbers you multiply together are called factors and the answer is called the product.
The next day, we practiced creating equal groups of different numbers by rolling the dice with a partner and drawing the picture. We also wrote the corresponding multiplication sentence.