In today’s age it is often hard to teach a child to tell time using an analog clock as most clocks and watches are also created using the digital format. More parents find it easier to simply have their child tell time on a digital clock and they never spend any time using the traditional analog clock because they feel that it will be too hard to learn. This is not the case at all – teaching your child to tell time does not have to be as hard as you think it is. There are some things that you have to keep in mind, however, before you attempt to teach your child to tell time.
One of the most important concepts that children need to understand is the concept of time itself. They need to have an understanding that time changes over the course of the day and there are a certain number of hours in a day, a week, a month and so on. They do not need to understand anything about the clock itself, just what the numbers represent on the clock. It is also therefore important that the child be able to perform basic counting in order to understand how to tell time on the clock. For example the child needs to be able to count to at least one hundred from memory and they need to be able to count by fives and by tens. Once your child is able to do this without problem then you can start working on telling time.
The second thing that children need to learn is that the clock has been broken down into hours. The traditional way of teaching children how to tell hours on the clock is to teach them that the short hand is the hour hand and the long hand is the one for minutes. You can teach this in conjunction with using the digital clock so that they get an understanding of what you mean by minutes and hours. When teaching the hours and minutes you should take the time to show the child that each dash on the clock either represents a second or a minute.
Children learn best through play so once they have an understanding of time and the clock itself then you could start playing games where the child sets the clock to a specific time. You can also design certain activities for specific times of the day and the child must tell the time in order to complete the activity. The possibilities are endless.