Is this really a method used in Japan?

I found this video explaining an unusual way to do double-digit multiplication. The math teacher says it’s a Japanese method, but the people I’ve asked so far say they’ve never heard of it. Have you?

Screen Shot 2014-03-30 at 2.49.01 PM

It seems a pretty convoluted way to me, but I’ve always liked multiplication and remember learning the tables in … maybe 3rd grade … just by memorizing them. We had to learn them up to 12 x 12. So it’s much easier for me to just do this in my head, carrying the two, and so on. But it may be helpful for people who need more visual help … and who have plenty of time. How about you? Do you have any stories about learning math? Any interesting strategies you used?

 

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