It’s That Time!

In 3rd grade, students are expected to:
• Tell and write time to the nearest minute
• Use analog and digital clocks to tell time
• Measure time intervals in minutes
• Solve word problems that involve addition and subtraction of time intervals in minutes and represent the problems on a number line.

Telling time is an important concept for everyday life. It’s also one that students some time struggle with if they don’t understand how a clock works. One reason students struggle with telling time on analog clock is the world around us has digital clocks. Another reason is because students focus on telling time during the measurement unit, and then move to a different concept.

One way to help students tell time is repetition with quick tasks throughout the year.
An activity that could help with that is:

It’s That Time!
• If you have a digital clock up in your classroom – Place pictures of analog clock times on index cards or small pieces of paper and pass out to a few students each day. When it is the time on the given analog clock, the child would stand up and announce “It’s that time” to the rest of the students. Everyone would compare the card to the actual clock to see if they agree, if not problem solve to determine the misconception.

analog clock

• If you have an analog clock up in your classroom – Place pictures of digital clock times on index cards or small pieces of paper and pass out to a few students each day. When it is the time on the given digital clock, the child would stand up and announce “It’s that time” to the rest of the students. Everyone would compare the card to the actual clock to see if they agree, if not problem solve to determine the misconception.

digital time

Extension – have students record the analog and digital time on a blank clock page.

Other quick tasks include:
• Encourage your school to place a schoolwide analog clock on the classroom televisions.
• As a parent, purchase an analog wrist watch for the child. This will encourage them to understand how the clock works with repetition.
• Record the class schedule using analog clocks on the board.
• Put a time matching game as a center where students can match the digital and the analog clocks with the same time.

time match

• Give time riddles. For example, “The hour hand is halfway between the 3 and 4, what time is it?” We would want students to justify it’s 3:30 because it’s halfway between the hour of 3 and 4.
• Encourage students to continue practicing telling time on an analog clock at home. For spiral homework, you could have them record three events that happen throughout a night and record the digital and analog time for each event.

For more ideas on telling time on an analog clock, read the related article at http://maccss.ncdpi.wikispaces.net/file/view/Taking+Time+to+Understand+Time.pdf.

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