Everyday, people face situations that call for adding, subtracting, multiplying, or dividing, and at least half of the time, these calculations are accomplished without the use of pen, paper, or calculators. Because figuring "in your head" is such an important life skill, it should have a regular role in classroom math teaching. This article describes an approach to teaching mental math skills using an exercise called "hands-on-the-table-math." To be sure this is a learning opportunity--not a testing situation--teachers should make solving the problem a class effort. Have students share their ideas and hear from their classmates. Meanwhile, teachers should guide the instruction and record the students' ideas on the board. Recording gives teachers the opportunity to model for the students how to represent their thinking mathematically.