Long Multiplication Activities

Instructor: Kerry Gray

Kerry has been a teacher and an administrator for more than twenty years. She has a Master of Education degree.

Long multiplication is the traditional method for teaching students how to multiply numbers that are two-digits or more. The following activities may be used with students to practice long multiplication.

Long Multiplication

Long multiplication combines multiplication, addition, and place value to find the product of two factors. This is the method that most teachers were originally taught to perform large multiplication calculations when they were in elementary school and remains a common approach today. The following activities may be used with upper elementary and middle school students to reinforce their understanding of long multiplication.

Card Game

Students will create and solve multiplication problems using the numbers on playing cards to indicate the products.


  • deck of cards with face cards, aces, and tens removed


  • Divide students into small groups.
  • Have students shuffle cards and place face down.
  • Have students take turns drawing 5 cards from the pile.
  • Have the student that drew the cards arrange the five cards into a 3-digit factor and a 2-digit factor for other students in the group to multiply. Assign one other student to give the answer but have the others in the group also multiply the numbers to check the answer.
    • This game may also be played using dice or spinners to determine the factors.

Break the Code


Students will use multiplication to write and break a coded message.

  • Have students create multiplication problems.
  • Have students solve their problems and write the answers on a separate answer sheet.
  • For each problem, have students create 4 multiple choice answer options.
  • Have students assign a letter to each answer choice so that when all problems are answered correctly, a word or short message is spelled.
  • Have students trade papers to have another student decode the message.

Fortune Teller Math

Students will create a fun foldable to test each other on multiplication problems.


  • 9' x 9' paper squares

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