How does inTABS™ Work?

To acquire behaviour, the student must engage in behaviour…learning by doing.” (B.F. Skinner, psychologist)

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inTABS™ ‘brings learning to life’ for instant mastery of the times table that lasts a life-time.

inTABS™ (shortened form of Interactive Tables) is a powerful kinaesthetic or multi-sensory learning system to achieve fast and effective results.

But how does it work [you mean show me the magic, Ed.]?

Interactive Learning

Uniquely, the answers to the equations are concealed which means the learner must interact with the book to reveal the answers. This interactive or kinaesthetic element creates powerful associations between the equations & the answers for memory and instant recall.

It works by using the established principles of Conditioning from psychology: through repeated interactions between the equations and answers, strong associations are formed (Classical Conditioning); which are positively reinforced or ‘rewarded’ when the child gets the answers right (Operant Conditioning).  Thus, the end result is a conditioned or automatic response when the equation alone is presented, i.e. instant recall! Seemingly simple but devastatingly effective.

Moreover, owing to the multi-sensory nature of learning involved (whereby they can visually map, see, touch, do etc.), the deeper level of processing means that not only will it work on gaining instant recall but also on retaining it over time.

In terms of Piaget’s Stages of Cognitive Development for children (the cornerstone of the Western educational model), the kinaesthetic nature of this book conforms to the Concrete Operational Stage (typically 7-11 years) whereby:

the child is now mature enough to use logical thought or operations (i.e. rules) but can only apply logic to physical objects (hence concrete operational)“.

Kinaesthetic learning is ideal for children (or adults) who benefit most from powerful interactive learning styles as opposed to the traditional rote learning methods used in schools which are not suitable for everyone. In the words of one of the most influential psychologists in the world, B. F. Skinner:

to learn, a student must engage in behaviour, and not just passively receive information.”

Kinaesthetic learning methods have been used with great success in Montessori schools.

Number Patterns

inTABS™ facilitates learning & detection of number patterns & symmetries using the unique shape coded patterns on the most recurring answers on the times table (12,24,36).

For example, ask the child to ‘find all the 12 answers’ on the grid: they will find that not only are all the 12 answers shape coded (hexagon) but also form an interesting ‘arc’ on the grid and the same again for 24(square) and 36(circle). This Facilitates an understanding of the relative relationships between numbers and their symmetries (3 x 4 is the same as 4 x 3 etc) as well as making learning fun, engaging and interesting. This is particularity useful for learners who engage more with patterns to make sense of things.

This can be also be turned into a fun game of ‘finding matching pairs‘ for children to learn symmetry: finding and lifting tabs to the equations that result in the same answer.

Traditional methods Vs.  inTABS™

You may be wondering what’s wrong with the traditional ‘finger tricks‘, ‘chanting the tables‘ or the ‘flash cards‘ methods that are widely used in schools (and in homes) and have been around in one form or another since the Victorian era? The simple answer is that they are not the same as instant recall which is key to not only to mastery of multiplication but to proficiency in maths (division, long multiplication, fractions, percentages, algebra etc). These antiquated methods rely upon tapping into a learned sequential methodology which is too slow: recall should be 2-3 seconds (under 2 seconds is excellent). Moreover, research shows they are largely ineffectual as evidenced by the current situation of Britain being nearly bottom of the developed world for numeracy. This is reinforced by the Ofsted findings that “pupils without instant recall of the multiplication table struggle in maths”.  

Thus, instant recall is cardinal with focus now firmly centred upon this in the new Government mandate: “Every child in Britain will have to know their times tables off by heart by 11″ ahead of “tough” against-the-clock testing on mental recall of times tables in all primary schools with strict accountability to ensure no single child fails this test.

Although it may be a bitter pill to swallow, the simple truth is that if current/pre-existing methods worked, then we wouldn’t have an innumeracy crisis in Britain (costing the economy over £20billion per year) with profoundly devastating outcomes for children’s futures (including twice as likely to be unemployed, general social deprivation and crime), arguably more so than the impact of illiteracy.

The educational gap / inequality will continue to get worse, unless we do something about it. Now.

Computers Vs.  inTABS™

You may now reasonably ask, that’s all very well but my school (or home) has the latest technology/IT, so we’re OK, aren’t we? The short answer is no. Research shows that computers do not improve results in maths and if anything:

[OECD] think tank says frequent use of computers in schools is more likely to be associated with lower [maths] results“.


In summary, instant recall (knowing off by heart) of the times table is cardinal to proficiency in maths in the same way mastering the ABC is to literacy. This fundamental has to be ensured to enable progress in maths.  It’s perhaps best summed up in the words of the Ofsted Education Director:

“Without [instant recall] is like sending a plumber out to do a job without knowing how to use a spanner“ (Jean Humphrys, Ofsted’s education director).

Otherwise, the writing is clearly on the wall:

Primary schools which fail to teach times tables by heart are condemning children to a lifetime struggling with numbers, [Ofsted] inspectors have warned.” 

inTABS™ was scientifically, not to mention painstaking and lovingly, developed over 18 months to make a difference in the belief that all children can gain mastery of the times table if they are given the right tools.

In short, with inTABS™: Every Child Counts!

See the magic for yourself

This product has undergone rigorous testing with amazing results but don’t just take our word for it – put it to the test yourself:

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Ensure  >  Empower >  Enjoy