is copyright Michael Curtis 2010-2021. All Rights Reserved.

Animal Multiplication


Multiplication can be expressed as pictures. I have given a digit number to 10 animals and 10 places. By colouring the places with colours 0 to 9 from the colour article, 2 imagined animals in a coloured place represent a multiplication.

Animal Place
0 Bunny Basket
1 Chicken Chair
2 Horse Hutch
3 Elephant Garden
4 Dog Mat
5 Parrot Pond
6 T-Rex Television
7 Cat Car
8 Spider Steps
9 Fish Roof

6 x 8 = 48; animal 6 beside animal 8 (both sitting on a coloured place) are a way to represent "What is 6 x 8?"; and

The Colour of the place and the place are two digits of information: the colour needs to be colour 4 and the place needs to be place 8: making 48.

I could even colour the animals to represent the result of adding the two animal digits together.

Here are the animals:

Here are the places.

Refer to the colours article to see what colour 0 to 9 are.

The 6 x 8 is represented by animal 6 and then animal 8 on the right of it: T-Rex and spider. The answer is 48 and that involves the colour for 4 and the place for 8 (steps). The T-Rex and spider are coloured in using the colours of 14 (the colours 1 and 4 resulting when 6 + 8 = 14 is calculated).

Note: 05 x 07 is like 07 x 05. So I prefer the 05 x 07 where the left number is lower than the right number.

I think this system demonstrates that a simple picture can contain information. I think though that it is much much better to know the answer to 6 x 8 from regular rote memory. The coloured animals are a safety net though in the case that there are stubborn multiplications that are just not being learned successfully by rote memory. It also makes the maths less daunting: a reduced barrier to entry.