clock for teaching time

How to tell the time without a clock

Is your child struggling to contextualise the passage of time on a clock? Understanding this concept can be tricky for young children – particularly if they are unable to see the process’ relevance in the wider world. So, if you are looking for ways to help them grasp this concept and enjoy a fun activity together this summer, learning how to tell the time without a clock is a great way to teach your child about time.

Using the sun’s position

First up: using the sun’s position to work out what time it is. As we all know, the movement of the sun across the sky is actually caused by the movement of the Earth as we orbit the sun, and this daily orbit gives us a good idea of the time at different points in the day.

To get started, take your little one outside in the morning, whilst the sun is still rising in the East. Once they have found the suns’ place in the sky, explain to them that the sun will always be visible in the East before midday, and that if they’re ever stuck without a clock, then they will be able to estimate the time of day by finding the sun’s place in the sky.

At midday, take them outside once again and explain to them that the sun will always be directly overhead at midday, and then finally take them outside again as the sun sets in the West. To conclude the day, explain how, thanks to the rotation and orbit of the Earth, the sun has followed a consistent journey across the sky, and that we are able to estimate what time it is by tracking its movement at different times of the day. This hands-on method helps children to better understand how time follows a consistent pattern and its connection to the Earth’s movements, giving them a tangible representation of time that they will always be able to refer back to.

Making a sundial

Once your child has developed a basic understanding of the sun’s relevance in time-telling activities, you can begin to build upon this understanding by making a sundial. Summertime is the best time to create a sundial as you will have more hours of sunlight to work with, so before your little one wakes up, head out to the garden and find a sunny spot to place a stick upright in the ground. This stick will function as a time telling device, as its shadow length and position will change as the sun’s position changes, making it a great demonstration for any curious child wondering how to tell the time without a clock.

When your child joins you in the garden to begin the activity, mark where the sticks’ first shadow falls with a stone or some colourful chalk. Then make sure that you return to mark the new shadows position at regular intervals throughout the day to create your child’s very own sundial, and make sure that you emphasise to your child that the passage of time is being clearly demonstrated by these markers.

Tracking the North Star

Tracking the North Star is a fascinating way for parents and children of all ages to explore the passage of time by working together to chart the celestial movements. Whilst this concept may seem too challenging for younger children, it follows a similar method to the sundial activity – only this time, we can clearly see that we are the moving object in the night sky.

Start by locating the North Star, also known as Polaris, in the night sky on a warm, clear evening. The North Star is a bright star that remains nearly fixed in the same spot in the night sky whilst the other stars appear to rotate around it due to Earth’s rotation. Point its position out to your child and take a few minutes every hour or so over the next few hours to relocate the star and observe how the surrounding stars appear to change position as the Earth continues to rotate.

Don’t forget to remind your little one that this apparent movement reflects the Earth’s rotation and the passing hours, rather than the movement of the stars, as younger children can become confused if this is not routinely explained to them. Through these observations, children will be able to clearly see the steady, predictable patterns of the night sky and develop their awareness of times’ broader context, as even the stars follow the rules of time every night.

Moon phases

There are two particular ways to use the moon to track the time, and one is best completed over the course of several weeks. However, the less time-consuming activity can be done by tracking the moon’s course over a single night, so if you are planning to do this, start off by noting the time at sunset. If the moon is already visible during this time, then make sure your child clearly notes the moon’s position in the sky as the sun sets.

Over the course of the night the moon will appear to move across the sky as both the Earth and the moon rotate, so regroup once an hour until bedtime to observe the moons’ new position at different times. By comparing the moon’s position to the time of sunset, you can calculate an approximate time based on its position earlier on in the evening.

If you are looking to track the position of the moon across a longer period of time, then engaging your little one in a charting activity is a great way to keep them engaged over the holidays. Begin by observing the moon every night and noting its shape and position, and keep a moon journal to record the moon’s shape each night by shading in the shape. Explain to your child how the moon’s appearance changes due to its orbit around Earth and the varying angles of sunlight hitting its surface to help them grasp longer time periods beyond the daily cycle. Over the course of approximately 29.5 days, the moon goes through its phases: new moon, first quarter, full moon, and last quarter, and by tracking the moon’s phases children are able to see a clear, repetitive system that spans weeks and months.

How to tell the time without a clock

Whilst all of these activities are great opportunities to deepen your little ones’ understanding, it is also clear that the easiest way to tell the time is with an EasyRead clock or watch! As we enjoy watching the movement of the moon, stars, and our own planet through the skies, let’s take a minute to be grateful that our daily routines no longer require us to know how to tell the time without a clock – and that we instead have access to all the time-telling resources that we need.

time teaching games to play at Christmas

Why a children’s wall clock should be on your Christmas list

Are you looking for the perfect educational gift to put under the Christmas tree this year? Whether your little one has recently begun learning how to tell the time, or if you are planning on teaching them in the new year, a children’s wall clock is a meaningful and practical gift that will give them the best introduction to telling the time. With age-appropriate designs and engaging visuals, our children’s clocks include all the information a young child needs to begin learning how to tell the time, so read on to explore why one of our specialist learning tools should be on your Christmas shopping list this year.

Educational Design

Combining the joy of learning to tell time with a fun and colourful design, our EasyRead children’s clock is the perfect addition to any child’s bedroom or playroom. Designed with children in mind, and specially created to simplify the time-teaching process, our clocks feature large, easy-to-read numbers, and big black hands that clearly stand out against the colourful background to precisely demonstrate the exact time.

This simple and intuitive design makes it easy for children to practise telling the time and functions as an excellent educational tool for this essential life skill. Depending upon the requirements of your little one, our clocks are available with the two simple teaching methods ‘minutes past & to’; and ’12/24 hour’, and the EasyRead 2 or 3-step teaching method clearly leads your child through the process of learning to tell the time. This clear educational design also carries all the information children need to learn how to tell the time, including every hour and minute of the day on the 12/24 hour clock, whilst the minutes past & to design is clearly divided into 4 quarter-hour sections. Both of these methods allow children to quickly and easily identify the minute and hour hand, and to understand how both hands work together to demonstrate the passage of time, rather than simply reading the hands without understanding how they represent a specific moment in time.

Our designs go deeper than surface level reading, and with our easy teaching methods and visually-engaging, clear clock faces, your child will be able to learn how to read the time quickly and easily this Christmas.

Excellent Decoration

Our children’s wall clocks are not just learning tools to help your child develop their time-telling skills; they also serve as visually appealing decorations for your child’s room. With their bright and colourful design, our clocks are designed to make learning to tell the time an enjoyable and engaging experience for kids of all ages whilst helping to add a touch of fun and child-friendly decor to the room.

The clock is available in a range of colours and designs, so you can choose the perfect one to match your child’s room or personality, as well as their preferred time-telling method. Whether they would prefer a subtle, simple white design, or our red & blue or rainbow faces, our colourful design brighten up any bedroom, and the large face size makes it easy to read from across the room, giving your child access to the exact time no matter where they are in the room.

With bright colours and age-appropriate educational designs, our children’s wall clocks make learning to tell the time an enjoyable and engaging experience for kids of all ages, whilst helping develop their cognitive and organisational skills.

Establish Routine

As we all know, a child’s routine is created for them, either by a parent or carer, or by their nursery or school. As the majority of their time is planned out for them, children often don’t have a clear understanding of the passage of time or the significance of allocating time to different tasks throughout the day until they come to learn how to tell the time. By investing in a wall clock for your child, you can introduce them to these wider concepts in their own time, allowing them to develop their own understanding.

By having a visual representation of the passing hours on their own bedroom or playroom wall, children can establish a sense of routine and structure in their day as they learn to read the time. They can observe how their different activities correspond with the movement of the hands on the clock face, which is also an excellent way to introduce them to the concept of time management. This introduction can be particularly beneficial during the Christmas holidays, as the children will not have their daily routine from school or nursery and may be off their usual schedule. They can instead make their own, by allocating time for reading, playing, or spending time with family, or simply by observing the passage of time during the activities and explaining how much time has passed during each event. Similarly, the Christmas holidays are an excellent opportunity to use their free time to practise learning how to tell the time and to arrange a variety of festive time-telling activities, such as counting down how many hours until Father Christmas visits, or until they visit family on Christmas day.

Investing in a durable, reliable, and engaging clock that has been specifically designed to support children’s learning and development is an excellent way to prioritise your child’s cognitive development and time-telling skills. By introducing them to these skills now, you can ensure that they have developed a familiarity with the passage of time, and are ready to hit the ground running with their new skills once they head back to school or nursery, ready to build on their knowledge and excel at telling the time.

Give the gift of time with an EasyRead children’s wall clock

With its simple design, bright colours, and easy-to-read numbers, our EasyRead children’s wall clock is the perfect Christmas gift to support your child in learning how to tell the time. Our children’s wall clocks are designed with children in mind, helping your little ones develop essential skills while adorning their room with style, so why not add this engaging and practical educational gift to your shopping list.

Explore our range of children’s clocks today, or check out our EasyRead watches and alarm clocks for more excellent stocking fillers.

EasyRead Time Teacher

What are your children learning at school?

It’s important for parents to understand what their child is learning at school. It’s only natural that parents want to help their child be the best they can be. The early years at school are important to a child’s learning growth.

Key Stage 1

Year 1 Programme

In 2014, telling the time was introduced to the National Curriculum. In the early stages of Key Stage 1, children are required to tell the time to the hour and half past the hour and draw the hands on a clock face to show these times. What better way to introduce your child to the concept of time than having your own EasyRead Time Teacher wall clock in your house? The clear and colourful clock face is easy to read and our simple yet effective learning methods will have your child reading the time in a matter of hours.

Year 2 Programme

According to the year 2 programme of study, children should be able to count in multiples of 2, 3, 5 and 10 forwards and backwards. They should also be able to recognise, find, name and write fractions. Our wall clocks will not only help children with counting, they can also assist with fractions. The ¼, ½ and ¾ fractions are easily recognisable on the EasyRead clock face and will help your child understand fractions. In year 2, children are expected to tell and write the time to five minutes including quarter past/quarter to the hour. They should also know the number of minutes in an hour and the number of hours in a day.

Key Stage 2

Year 3 & 4 Programmes

Key Stage 2 builds upon the Key Stage 1 skills. Children will develop their fractions and counting skills. They will also learn to tell and write the time from an analogue clock. Children will also be expected to have a good concept of time. This means they will be able to estimate the time with increasing accuracy to the nearest minute. They will also use vocabulary such as o’clock, am/pm, morning, afternoon, noon and midnight. Our clocks are proven to help children at an early age to grasp the concept of time.

Our EasyRead Time Teacher wall clocks and watches are great for introducing your children to the concept of time so they are prepared for what they are going to be learning at school.

Click here to see the EasyRead wall clocks.

Click here to see the EasyRead watches.

EasyRead Time Teacher

To teach analogue or not?

“Excuse me, do you have the time?” – A common question asked. What if you couldn’t answer that question? Well according to a poll by an on-line watch retailer earlier last year, one in seven people admit they can’t tell time on a non-digital watch.

More shockingly perhaps is the fact that in a different poll by www.TwistedTime.com, 37 per cent of parents with children aged 10 or under said they had not or did not plan to teach their children to read the time on non-digital watches. But why is this? Perhaps because people rely on getting the time from their phones and iPods rather than from watches and clocks.

Is it even necessary for 21st century children to learn how to tell the time on an analogue clock in today’s digital age? Well, yes! There are countless reasons:

  • Analogue clocks can provide a vivid representation of time that digital clocks cannot. With many different learner types out there – including visual learners/thinkers – most need the analogue clock to have a good understanding of time. Children with autism spectrum disorders are an example.
  • Telling the time is a useful skill and analogue clocks are still in use. It also provides a useful framework for understanding of modules and alternative numerical base systems.
  • Are we going to replace the beautiful clocks on our churches and railway stations even the with digital? Surely not!
  • “I’ll meet you at the train station at quarter past five” – this could be a problem if you can only use a digital clock!
  • iPhones and iPods have an analogue clock option which is very popular amongst Apple users. Other companies such as Audi and Lexus also use the analogue clock rather than digital in some of their cars. Analogue still exists around us – and will continue to do so.

We are a family business dedicated to helping children and adults learn to tell the time on analogue clocks. Our clocks and watches are designed to help children learn to tell the time in terms of ‘minutes past’ and ‘minutes to’ the hour. Take a look at our 2 and 3 step teaching method.

EasyRead Time Teacher

What are your children learning at school?

It’s important for parents to understand what their child is learning at school. It’s only natural that parents want to help their child be the best they can be. The early years at school are important to a child’s learning growth.

Preschool and Kindergarten

At preschool age, kids are required to be able to discuss units of time. For example seconds, minutes, hours, days, weeks and years. To be able to do this, kids need to have an understanding of how time works. Having one of our EasyRead wall clocks at home will begin to introduce kids to the concept of time, therefore making their first day at preschool that little bit easier. In Kindergarten, kids will begin to develop their understanding of units of time and will begin to add phrases such as morning, afternoon, next week, in fifteen minutes etc. to their vocabulary.

Grade 1

Kids at this stage should be able to tell and write the time in hours and half hours. They will also be able to describe events in terms of time. This means they will begin to use phrases such as “this morning I…”, “for the first 15 minutes I will be…” and “at 1:30pm I…”

Our EasyRead Time Teacher wall clocks and watches are great for introducing your kids to the concept of time at home so they are prepared for what they are going to be learning at school.

Click here to see the EasyRead wall clocks.

Click here to see the EasyRead watches.

EasyRead Time Teacher

Our customers are our best advert

Here at EasyRead Time Teacher, we love hearing feedback from our customers. We have always believed that our customers are our best advert. Take a look at what they are saying about EasyRead:

“The watch I ordered allowed my 9 year old dyslexic daughter to read the time like her classmates for the very first time! It has made such a significant difference to her life.”

“I would highly recommend this clock if your child has difficulty understanding how to tell the time – I wish I’d had something like this when I was a child!”

“My daughter has an EasyRead watch, we bought the matching clock and they really help with her understanding.”

“My five year old daughter learned to tell the time in five minutes!”

“Fantastic watch! My Granddaughter can’t wait to go to school wearing hers!”

“Excellent, daughter is very happy! She learnt time within two days. The watch is very sturdy, highly recommended.”

“Best watch I’ve ever purchased for my daughter.”

“What a brilliant watch!! So easy to read and builds children’s confidence. I would recommend this watch to everyone!”

“Great products and excellent quality for the money!”

Would you like to see what all the fuss is about? Click here to view all our EasyRead products.

EasyRead Time Teacher

Teaching with TwinTime

TwinTime offers a whole different method of teaching children how to tell the time. Here at EasyRead, we understand how difficult teaching the time can be – especially in a classroom full of excitable children. Our products are proven and trusted by hundreds of schools and thousands of teachers.

We recommend pairing the TwinTime Teacher Edition with the TwinTime Student Edition however this isn’t essential, our system works just as effectively if you purchase one or the other.

The TwinTime Teacher Edition was designed so teachers can stand at the front of a classroom to demonstrate setting the time with the moveable hands. It is wipe on wipe off so you can also write the time underneath the clock.

The TwinTime Student Edition is smaller than the Teacher Edition – perfect for children. They are perfect for children to work in groups or individually for setting the time on the clock face and then writing the time underneath.

As well as telling the time, TwinTime is also useful for counting forwards and backwards from 30, for learning fractions and counting in 5s and 10s.

Our 2 and 3 step teaching systems will work perfectly with TwinTime in teaching children how to tell the time. Take a look at them here.

EasyRead Time Teacher

Perfect for schools

So you’ve bought your EasyRead Time Teacher clock…now what?

Practice makes perfect! Our clocks are designed to be taken off the wall and interacted with. Children will love the ‘hands on’ learning and then, seeing it every day up on the wall, they can practice and cement their learning.

We have even put the teaching methods on the back of the clock to make life as easy as possible! The simple design is brilliant for young children trying to get to grips with telling the time.

Take a look at our classroom clocks here.

Download our free resources here.

If you need any help or have any questions, please email us on [email protected] or call on 07865 470905.

EasyRead Time Teacher

Real learning comes from repeated practice

EasyRead Time Teacher believe in practice makes perfect. When children master something as difficult as telling the time, they need to cement that skill with practice. We have the solution.

Having an EasyRead classroom clock on your wall encourages children to practice on their own, in their own time. Children love to take ownership of their learning and will be running to the clock to practice their new skills!

As well as our brilliant products, we also offer numerous free learning resources such as clock colouring sheets, our two step and three step systems and our video library.

EasyRead Time Teacher

How to use TwinTime

Teaching a classroom full of children to tell the time is tricky. So we created EasyRead TwinTime – great for schools.

Our new EasyRead TwinTime is a ‘hands on’ resource for children learning to tell the time. It is a teaching and learning resource perfect for teachers to demonstrate setting and telling the time on a clock face.

Pair the TwinTime Student with the Teacher Edition for an educational but fun lesson plan. The PVC clock cards are wipe on wipe off so children can practise setting the time on the clock face and writing the time underneath. You can also use our TwinTime products for teaching fractions.

Learn both ‘minutes past and minutes to’ and ’12 and 24 hour’ methods with our double sided teaching resources. We are trusted by hundreds of schools and thousands of teachers.

Click here to see our Student Edition here.

Click here to see our Teacher Edition here.

Use our simple yet effective two step teaching method for ‘12 and 24 hour’ and our three step teaching method for ‘minutes past and minutes to’.