5 Fun Ways to Teach Kids to Tell Time

 Learning to tell time is a rather important skill for your kids. While we do, in most cases, have digital clocks, it's still a crucial skill for kids to learn how to use an analog clock. Those hands can sure be confusing at first!

Teaching your kids to tell time shouldn't be a confusing or troublesome task. There are plenty of fun ways to introduce time to kids and show them the ways to read the clock. Once he understands telling time, it'll click fast for your kids!

The next thing you know, your child will be pointing out the time frequently. 

So, here are some fun, stress-free ways to teach kids to tell time. 

5 Fun Ways to Teach Kids to Tell Time

1. Play with a Clock That Has Moveable Arms 

Whether you want to make the clock yourself from a paper plate or if you buy a learning clock, kids need to become acquainted with a clock face with the short hour hand and long minute hand. 

Using the clock, talk about events throughout the day and move the arms to those times. For example, you might tell your child that he likes to wake up each day at 7 o'clock in the morning, and you move the hands there. Then, you tell him that dad leaves for work at 8:30, so you move the hour and minute hands! 

Another way to use this is to roll dice and moving the hands forward or back depending on the numbers rolled. You can adjust this game as you want. 

2. Use a Time-Telling App

Using apps to teach kids is a smart way to integrate technology, learning, and fun together. I have two recommendations for time-telling apps. 

  • Time Teacher is for iOS, and it lets the kids move the hands on the clock repeatedly. The app has little quizzes to test your child's knowledge. An example is asking if the digital time matches the analog clock. 

  • Interactive Telling Time is for iOS and Android, and it also has movable hands to set the time. This app also lets parents customize settings like a 12 or 24-hour clock format as well as the level of difficulty. So, you can move it to a harder level for your older child. Also, the app has a game called "Stop the Clock" that helps kids learn how to identify minutes. 

3. Look and Talk About Time Daily

Like anything else, the best way to learn something is to talk or go over it each day. The more that you introduce something to your child, the better they learn it. I suggest that you talk to your child each day about time.

You can hang an educational poster in your school room or playroom space, so you know that your child sees the right information about telling time. Another idea is to use an educational placement. You can go over telling time each day when your child has breakfast or snack time at the table. 

4. Play Time Bingo

Every kid loves to play Bingo, and you can make the game work for learning how to tell time. Here's what you need to do.

Make Bingo cards and write across the top TIME-0. Each letter stands for a column. Then, in the five rows, write a different time. So, you need 24 different times altogether. Examples include 5:30, 10:13, 4:27, and 7:18. Make sure you include the FREE space in the middle for the 25th square. 

Now, when you call out the times, you say E-10:13 or 0-5:30. You also can mix it up a bit and say a half-past five or a quarter til 8. 

5. Read Some Time-Telling Books 

I bet you didn't think of reading books to learn about telling time, but you might be shocked to learn that there are dozens of math books out there. These books are great ways to reinforce a concept and to encourage your child to appreciate and enjoy math more than they did before.

Here are some suggestions to try.


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