Wednesday, March 16, 2016

What TIME is it?

It’s that time of year again…time to practice telling time…right down to the minute! Making the jump from only telling time to the hour and to the half hour has been FUN! Here’s a little of what we’ve been up to lately…


…because our current math unit only covers one primary standard, our unpacking chart has doubled as an anchor chart to compile learning. We began by discussing the importance of telling time and reviewed telling time to the hour and to the half hour. After having just completed fractions, we also color coded the half hour and quarter hour to help us tell time a little later.


Distinguishing between AM and PM sounds like a pretty easy concept…right up until a 7 year old has to wrap their brain around morning starting in the middle of the night! Yikes!!! LOL! This day’s lesson was a laughter filled afternoon of sorting and game playing. We named activities that we usually do each day and had to determine if those activities took place during AM hours or PM hours. Some were tricky, but they got the hang of it through lots of grins and giggles.

In our classroom, independent work often starts with a blank sheet of paper. Creativity, after all, is intelligence having fun! In order to show what they’d learned, students traced the lines of a piece of paper I had pre-folded for them. They labeled their headers for AM and PM being sure to add the 12 hour span of time both covers and illustrated the sky to show their understanding of what it may appear to look like during those times. After completing their headers, students drew four events from their day that took place during AM hours and four events that took place during PM hours. Lots of fun discussion…


On the next day, we prepared to begin telling time by skip counting by ‘fives’. Using an analog clock to tell time is a skill that’s quickly becoming obsolete, if it hasn’t already. Most 7 year olds check the time on mom or dad’s cell phone screen, but now…these smart cookies are some of the best time keepers on the planet and are keeping our daily schedule on track by reading our classroom analog clock to the exact minute! In order to make the transition from whole and half hours as smooth as possible, we pulled out our unifix cubes to “touch” the minutes as we counted them. Second graders are awesome little people!

Beginning with the cubes helped to make the minutes tangible, concrete…something they could touch before trying to get them to grasp the concept of abstract, individual minutes. Being able to use our circle tables for learning is just one more reason why we love them! After getting my Ron Clark on during our whole group lesson, students used numbers to build a clock face on their table top in small groups and then placed blocks to represent 5 minute intervals for counting. I often perceive myself to be just a bit taller than I actually am. Having a little platform up there might not be such a bad idea! Hmmmmmm….


Now, students have an additional resource from Really Good Stuff to help them tell time successfully. Side note: Don’t show kids everything you’ve got at the beginning of the year. Save instructional décor until you need it to teach with…then you’ll have something new to share and kids will more likely ACTUALLY use it as a resource!


We’ve kept the clocks we made on the first day of our unit to use as tools for learning. Now, we’ve also created flaps to display the time to the ‘five’ under each number on the face of the clock. Being able to tell time to the fives will help us get to the exact minute by skip counting and then counting on
to the specific time.


The kiddos have enjoyed having their own clock, BUT I think the final look of their tables have been their favorite thing so far. After each group assembled their table clocks, I taped the numbers down and used a sharpie to add “minute” marks to the tables. Yep, I wrote on the table with a sharpie! GASP!!! It comes off, lol! With a little hand sanitizer and time, it’ll be completely removable…..BUT hopefully, not until AFTER we’ve finished learning how to tell time.

NOW, each table group can work together to display time and write the digital format to match it. Tables will also double as clocks for math station activities when we return from spring break! =)


AND…our anchor chart has changed a LOT with each additional lesson too! It’s almost complete! As part of our final review lesson, before the BIG test, we’ll label both the analog clock and the digital clock with a specific time.

NOW, it’s time for this teacher mama to go to bed! I hear a fun filled day of spring break calling…TTYL! 


  1. Where did you get the paper plate clocks from? Nicer than the ones that I have, larger too.

  2. Where did you get the paper plate clocks from? Nicer than the ones that I have, larger too.

  3. I believe the clock is from The Crazy School Teacher. Thanks for
    stopping by! =)

  4. Love the Clock tables! What a great idea!

  5. I love how you made clocks out of your tables so that students could actually touch the minutes! Genius... Thanks for the idea!
    :0) Melissa

  6. These tableclocks are so great! I love them. This could be a really interesting idea for my little Robin's school. But usual we have tables with corners here. Maybe they can stick round forms on them ....


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