Check out my 4.80 year old daughter doing some multiplication practice on the computer:
Pretty impressive, right? Even I was surprised at her progress.
With my firstborn, the Prince, I basically took a workbook approach to math.
Despite eye-popping success (from counting to algebra in 1.5 years, by age 5.125!) I decided to experiment with his younger sister.
We did the introductory Kumon Math workbooks just as I did with the Prince, but then I decided to start making my own worksheets for the Princess.
And I also deliberately tried to incorporate more computer-based learning - but for the most part in the form of those numerous free websites.
That program above is called Math Rider and as you can see it rapid-fires math questions at the student.
It covers basic addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division with three levels apiece (Easy, Medium, and Advanced).
Merely one week ago it took my daughter well over an hour, and many tears, to complete the medium multiplication level. But within a few days she started whizzing through it as you can see demonstrated above. That particular multiplication quest probably only takes her twenty-something minutes now. Tears have morphed into triumphant boasts! I'll let her bask in her glory for a couple of days....then I'll boot her up to the always-imposing next level.
Problems come in batches of 30. Each round is scored and added to a *quest total*. The better the scoring, the faster the quest can be completed. What you saw my daughter do was complete the final ride. I think it took her 8-10 rides, or 240-300 total questions to hurdle.
Again, it covers all the basic operations. She's also conquered the medium level on addition and we are working on subtraction at the moment - counting backwards is always harder for young'uns. Division shouldn't be started until multiplication is down cold, of course. I expect that within 1-2 months - if not sooner - she'll have mastered all the vitally important *math facts*.
What I personally like about Math Rider is that it's a time-intensive exercise. A kid might sit there all day long with a worksheet - alternating between daydreaming, nasal mining, computation, etc. - in a homeschool environment. So Math Rider effectively recreates the pressure and focus inherent in classroom quizzes and tests.
Of course, what I also like about this program is that it liberates me from the tedium of teaching, "If 7+7 is 14, then 7+8 is what?" for the one billionth time! All you parents afraid of *teaching* your kids the love/hate subject of math take special note.
Math Rider is $37 right now. If you have multiple kids...it's a no-brainer. And regardless you can try it out at home with a full money-back guarantee for 30 days. Use any of my links on this post (the Prince will appreciate the commission!), you can download the software immediately and set your child up first thing tomorrow morning. You watch, they might very well love it. After all it's a freakin' video game!
See also - Off-The-Chart Homeschooling.