3-Simple Steps for Multiplying Numbers like 76 x 39!

3-Steps Make Multiplication Simple!

Step 1 – Write your “Counting by the Numbers” for one set of the factors (the numbers you are multiplying).  In this case I wrote my 3’s and 9’s for Thirty-nine.
Step 2 – Draw your Area Box, and break it into 4-parts.  Next write your factors as tens + one.  Now, Use the counting by the numbers as I demonstrate in the video below to multiply these numbers.
Step 3 – Finally, add all your products (the product is the answer for multiplication)  together.

The “1.1 Watch Me” video below shows a
detailed explanation of this problem!
There an Easier Way for Children to Learn Multiplication!

For years I have watched children struggle with Multiple Digit Multiplication, which begins with problems like, 736 x 8, then quickly increases in difficulty to problems like, 574 x 763, and finally culminates in multiplying decimals like 5.83 x 7.3.  Children who are struggling with Multiple Digit Multiplication are smart kids!  However, they have some gaps in their learning when it come to multiplication.  Simply repeating the same strategies they were taught when they first started learning multiplication will not work.  So, I looked for an easier strategy – one where all children would be successful multiplying large numbers.  I decided to incorporate Counting by the Numbers, an Area Box, and Simple Addition.

Area Multiplication
Designed so that
ANYONE can Succeed at Multiplication!

Hello, my name is Brian McCoy, and I am a credentialed teacher in the state of California.  I have been teaching elementary and middle school children for over a quarter of a century.  After years of watching children struggle with the algorithm for multiplying large numbers, I set out to develop an easier method.  I created Area Multiplication.

Let me be clear, Area Multiplication is NOT for children who can already multiply large numbers like 574 x 763.  The process does take a bit more time.  However, Area Multiplication is structure in such a way that absolutely anyone can successfully multiply large numbers.


By simply writing the “counting by the numbers” above their problem, children who do NOT know their multiplication facts can succeed!  For example, with the problem 736 x 8; Children can write “counting by the numbers” for 8’s.  The mathematical model at the top of this page shows the results.

My goal is for children is to memorize their multiplication facts.  However, until they know all their facts, they need a strategy.  Counting by the numbers is the easiest strategy to learn.  Therefore, I have added counting by the numbers to the end of each and every video.  Children who do not know all their multiplication facts should watch and count with me at the end of each of these videos until they can count by all the number on their own.  Repetition of this strategy will help in all areas of math that require multiplication.  Once a child knows all their multiplication facts, they can stop the videos after the problem is solved and before Counting by the Numbers begins.

6-Steps to Understanding Area Multiplication

I have incorporated a cyclical learning approach, where each educational concept is first introduced, then reinforced, then revisited again and again – with each subsequent step rising to the next level of competency.  There are 6-steps that take children for the basics of multiplication to multiplying decimals by decimals.  Because Area Multiplication is slightly different from the conventional multiplication, it is important that you begin the appropriate level of competency.  If you fully understand the “Watch Me”, “Work with Me”, and “On Your Own” problems, you are ready for the next step in  understanding Area Multiplication.  If not – You may want to spend a bit more time on this step.

I introduce each step of Area Multiplication in a similar manner to how I teach my students within my class.

For this first problem, I encourage you to simply watch how the problem is solved.  I like to introduce any new concept in this manner, so you can relax and focus on the strategies for solving the problem.


For this second problem, I encourage you to develop your skills by working side-by-side with me.  I would like you to watch a bit of the video, then pause it, and copy what I do on your paper.


For the remaining problems, I encourage you to solidify your skills by completing the problems on your own.  Once you have completed the problem, watch the video, and correct your mistakes.  Over the years, I have found that children make substantial jumps in understanding when they find their own mistakes and then fix them.  That is why I have included this form of teaching into this post.

1.1- Watch Me

Hide’n Seek with Oscar Orangutan

Oscar Orangutan is the best when it comes to hide’n seek.  He plays hide’n Seek every single day of his life.  As a matter of fact, he has hidden 39 time for the past 76 days.  Every time he hid in a different spot.  How many different places has Oscar the “Hide’n Seek Orangutan” hidden?

This is a “Watch Me” Challenge:

Simply watch the video below to see how this problem is solved.  Pay close attention.  Your next challenge will be very similar to this one.

1.2 – Work with Me

Bold Billy

Meet Bold Billy.  He is the bravest squire in the entire US of A.  That’s right, there is no braver squire in the entire United States of America!  Billy is so brave, he will even stare down a Mountain lion.  Just last week, Bold Billy was seen eating an acorn when a mountain lion snuck up behind him.  Billy turn around, holding his acorn, and looked the mountain lion square in the eyes.  He finished his acorn and then chase the mountain lion away by jumping up and down like a lunitic and screaming like a – well – like a wild squire.

Why is Bold Billy so Brave?  We believe it’s because he absolutely love acorns.  Billy has eaten 37 acorns every hour for the past 48 hours.  How many acorns has Bold Billy eaten in the last 48 hours?

This is a Work with Me Video
  1. Gather the following materials:
    1. A blank piece of paper
    2. A pencil
  2. Play the video below.
    1. Pause the video when told.
    2. Copy the problem down on your own paper, and solve it with me.

Pay close attention.  Your next challenge will be very similar to this one.

1.3 – On Your Own

Thurman the Thoughtful Horse

Thurman is a thoughtful horse.  When other hoses are frolicking through the snow, Thurman is contemplating serious thoughts – Thoughts like:  (Where did that fence come from?)  and (Did it grow out of the ground, or did it fall from the sky and just land there?)

Thurman is constantly thinking thoughts.  As a matter of fact, Thurman thinks 34 different thought every minute.  If Thurman is left alone to think his thoughts for 57 minutes, how many thoughts will Thurman the Thoughtful Horse think?

Your Challenge:
Gather the following materials:
  • A blank piece of paper
  • A pencil

Solve this problem just as you did in the earlier one.

Don’t worry if you make a mistake – Some of our biggest leaps in learning come when we make a mistake then see what we did wrong and fix it.

Once you have completed this challenge, click the link below:

Keep your paper with you while you watch the video.

If you made a mistake, pause the video and fix your mistake.
That’s the fastest way to learn!

How did you do?
Were you able to complete all three problems successfully?

If you answered Yes – Then you are ready for the next level.

If you would like more time reviewing this concept, leave a comment below.  I am constantly creating new videos and ebooks.  If there is a need – I will focus on this concept.

Video-Blogs within this Series

I have planned six video-blogs for this series on Area Multiplication.  You can visit each blog by clicking on the links below.  After reviewing the post, please leave a comment.  I love hearing your thoughts.

Area Multiplication – Blog 1
The activities within this blog will introduce you to strategies for solving problems that multiply a 3-digit number by a 1-digit number (ie: 763 ÷ 8 = 5,464).  This blog forms the building blocks of understanding for all blogs in this series.

Area Multiplication – Blogs 2

I have completed the planning stage for this series on Area Multiplication, and will post the video-blogs as I complete them.  Check back in a week or two, and I should have the next video-blog ready for you to review.
Thanks for your patience.

Other Books & Creations by Brian D. McCoy

TeachersDungeon is an Educational Fantasy Game.  It is 100% FREE!  The game is set to the Common Core Educational Standards, and is web-based, so it can be played on any device.  Many of the questions are accompanied by tutorials like the ones you saw here.


An Introduction to Area Division
Area Division is structure in such a way that absolutely anyone can successfully divide large numbers.  I developed Area Division by incorporating skip counting, and an area box for the division.  By incorporating skip counting, even students who do not know their multiplication facts can successfully divide large numbers.



An Easy Way to Understand Fractions
Fractions tend to be very abstract.  Because of this, children often have a very hard time understanding what in the world is happening with fractions.  In this first book, I will demonstrate how to break a whole into parts.  This may seem like a very basic concept, but it is essential to understanding fractions.  For a FREE preview of this book, click here, An Easy Way to Understand Fractions.


MY ADVENTURES WITH CHICKENSPIKE – This is a chapter book that is perfect for children in 3rd and 4th grades.  My Adventures with ChickenSpike is a Children’s Fantasy Book.  The main character is a young boy who is being bullied.  He travels to a distant planet and finds his inner strength.  By the time he returns home not only is he no longer a victim, he is a hero!



RED – This is a young adult novel that is especially designed for children in 5th and 6th grades.  Red is an action packed adventure with two main characters and a number of supporting characters that add humor and drama to this novel.  Bruno Vic and Evelyn Rose attend Sir Francis Drake Middle School.  Bruno is big, street-wise, and tough, but he also has high morals and undying loyalty to his friends.  Evelyn Rose was born rich, but an unfortunate turn of events has landed her in the heart of the Tenderloin District of San Francisco.  Bruno, Evelyn, and their friends are desperate to steer clear of the gangs, so the turn to a mysterious man that the gangs seem to fear.  His name is Red.

One Last Thing

If you like this post and found it helpful, please click one of the share buttons.  My mission in life is to empower children academically, and to help them develop a strong self-esteem.  You can help by sharing this post!

Have a fantastic day – Brian McCoy

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