Teaching kids to tell the time can be a pretty daunting task, even for the most seasoned teachers! It’s such an abstract and far-reaching topic, that knowing how to make it interesting is hard. There are plenty of visual supports out there to help kids, but how do we make telling the time a fun topic? We’ve gathered 36 of the most fun and creative ways to teach time so that this concept sticks! Which ideas will your class love? Read on to find out!
1. Time Travel Online Game
Bring fun to your lesson with this interactive game! This basic game is a super resource to help your kids learn both an analog clock and digital time, as well as the concept of AM and PM. What a super way to get them excited to learn about time!
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2. Routine Worksheet
Make it personal! Your kiddos will find it easier to understand the concept of time when they can apply it to their own daily routine. Have them read the clocks and write down the time of each part of a daily routine then discuss how this fits in with their own days!
Learn More: Kids Pages
3. Time Card Sort
Let your kiddies get to grips with the concept of duration of time with this fun matching activity. Have them sort activities into how long they take, whether it be seconds, minutes, hours, or weeks. They’ll be experts at this tricky concept in no time at all!
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4. What’s the Time Mr. Wolf
Why not start your time lesson with a quick game of “What’s the Time Mr. Wolf”? Have them line up across from one child who is the “wolf”. The wolf calls out the time and students count the numbers up to that time, trying to get to the wolf before they call out “Dinner time!”. What a fun way to get them excited to learn all about telling time!
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Try out this classic game with a fun time-themed spin! Print out Tick-Tock-Toe playing cards and have your kiddos call out the times on the analog clock as they place their playing pieces. These can also double for makeshift bingo cards if you print out a few of the same. Two fun games in one resource – what’s not to love?
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6. Telling Time Dominoes
Your learners will be time pros in no time playing this super dominoes game! Have your kiddies match up the digital clocks and the analog clock to boost their time-telling abilities. The best thing is, this game can be replayed as many times as they want, as the order will change every time!
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7. Time Word Problems
Word problems are the perfect way to combine telling the time and problem-solving skills. Let your kiddos have a go at this worksheet, then challenge them to come up with their own. These problems are the perfect way to introduce different wordings like “quarter past nine” and “nine-fifteen”.
Learn More: Math Geek Mama
8. Time Flies Board Game
Kids love board games in any shape or form! This fun printable board game will tap into your class’ competitive spirit as they race along the board while telling time on the way. To make the game more difficult, have them calculate how much time has passed between the two clocks they move between.
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9. Insect Matching Puzzle
Call the exterminator! This super simple puzzle activity is a fantastic way to let your kiddies see the correlation between digital and analog time as they match the clock face on the jar to the bug with the corresponding time. Time reading will become a breeze after a few rounds of this game.
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10. Elapsed Time Ruler
Print out a 12-hour or 24-hour ruler for kiddos in your class to help them with telling the time. These are the perfect aids to help them visualize the passage of time as they complete their work and learn tricky concepts. You could stick them onto their desks or even make them into bracelets so they’re easy to find!
Learn More: Ms Crafty Nyla
11. Rock Clock
Bring your time lesson into the great outdoors! Have your kiddies build their own rock clock from natural materials like sticks and stones to help them become confident time tellers. It’s a super creative way to get them comfortable with the layout of a clock and its different features.
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12. Hickory Dickory Dock
This classic nursery rhyme is a playful way to help very young kids to tell time. You can create this fun visual accompaniment to the rhyme by using clothespins to make little mouse numbers that your learners can then place on the clock face. Who knew telling the time could be so cute?
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13. LEGO Clock
Calling all LEGO enthusiasts! Let your kiddos unleash their creative side by building a clock from LEGO. These clocks are colorful, kooky, and playful, and you can even ask kids to adjust the time throughout the day to let them practice this skill regularly. Get building!
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14. Around the Clock Book
Gather round, it’s story time! Reading books about time is a brilliant way to introduce clocks and the concept of time to your littlest learners. This book has fun illustrations and a quirky story about how Mr. Crocodile learns how to make friends over the course of a day! Counting has never been this fun!
Learn More: Amazon
15. Craft Clock Flower
Put a crafty spin on the classic paper clock-making activity. Have your kiddos create a clock face to be the middle of a flower then add minutes around the edge like petals to make this stunning educational tool. This version is far more exciting and creative than the standard version, teaching time in a far more memorable way.
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16. Parts of a Clock
Get to know your way around the clock! When starting to teach your kiddies how to tell time it’s important they know the different parts of a clock and their functions. This printable worksheet is a quick activity to teach the different parts and will serve as a reminder for them as they continue to learn. Time to get printing!
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17. What’s the Time Video
Fun songs and nursery rhymes are the best ways to introduce time to your youngest learners. This video has a catchy tune and focuses on basic hour clocks and a few five-minute intervals nearer to the end. Kids will love to get up and dance all while learning the basics of telling time.
Learn More: YouTube
Learn to tell the time three different ways with this next idea! Teaching students to tell time should not only be based on a digital and analog clock but they’ll also need to be able to identify the words that they’ll use in a time sentence. This time bot printable is a great way for them to connect all three ways of telling time in one cute worksheet.
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19. Sundial Activity
Step back in time with a sundial! Take your kiddies outside and create a simple sundial using just a stick and some stones to mark the hours. Let them observe how the shadow moves, serving as Earth’s original timekeeper. What a super way to combine math and history!
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20. “Beat the Clock” Math Game
Math has never been this thrilling! Challenge your learners to complete math problems within a set time frame. The ticking timer not only hones their ability to read time but also adds to the fun of the activity. It’s excitement and education rolled into one, perfect for keeping them engaged and focused on their learning.
Learn More: Transum
21. Time-Telling Flashcards
Get your flashcards ready! Hand out cards with different times written on them to your kids, and ask them to identify the displayed times as quickly as they can. To up the ante, you could even add minutes to the times! This quick-fire method familiarizes them with their clock-reading skills while still bringing a bit of a challenge to your lesson.
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22. Classroom Schedule Clock
Bring your classroom clock to life! Create a display with different clocks that show key times in the day such as “lunchtime”, “math period”, and “hometime”. This is a fantastic way to help your kiddies relate time to their daily activities and make the classroom clock something your students can see as a practical, ever-present tool!
Learn More: Teacher Nyla
23. Time-Telling Scavenger Hunt
Who doesn’t love a good scavenger hunt? Why not design one for your kiddos that incorporates clues based on both analog and digital time and get them to read the time correctly to proceed to the next clue? This adventurous approach makes the skill of telling time an exciting quest for your class.
Learn More: Twinkl
24. “Time for School” Role Play
Step into the role-play arena! Let your kids take turns acting as the teacher, announcing times for different activities, and adjusting the classroom clock accordingly. This dynamic approach not only teaches time but also instills a sense of timekeeping and demonstrates the concept of the duration of time too.
Learn More: YouTube
25. Time-Telling Worksheets
Fill in the blanks! Provide your learners with worksheets featuring various clock images and have them jot down the correct times under each clock. Together, you can check the sheets to ensure everyone’s catching on and has the right idea. It’s a super efficient and interactive method for assessing their grasp of telling the time.
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26. Interactive Time-Telling Educational App
Go digital! Utilize this educational app to engage your students in fun quizzes and interactive lessons about telling time. This app is the perfect way to combine technology with education and make learning about time something they’ll look forward to each day! You could even set this up as a fast-finisher task for kids who are always looking for an extra challenge.
Learn More: Amazon
27. Time-Telling Hopscotch
Let’s hop to it! Convert the classic hopscotch into a time-telling game by drawing a large clock on the ground with chalk. Each section is an hour, and as your kiddies hop, skip, and jump, they shout out the time wherever they land. Who knew you could get in some exercise and learn about time all in one go!?
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28. DIY Paper Plate Clock
Let’s get crafty! Help your learners design their own interactive paper plate clocks using markers and fasteners. As they assemble the clocks, you can encourage them to discuss why we need to be able to tell the time in daily life. This hands-on activity makes the abstract concept of time a bit less confusing for your kiddos, whilst also giving them a practical tool to help them as they learn!
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29. Make A Daily Journal
Why not try keeping a daily journal to teach your kiddos about time? Encourage them to jot down the times of their daily activities in a journal and then share their entries in class and look at duration and the passage of time. It’s a personal way for them to begin to explore adding different times together.
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30. Time-Telling Relay Race
On your marks, get set, go! Why not organize a time relay race for your kiddies? Give each pupil a time and have them set a clock or write the time correctly before passing it on to the next member of their team. It’s a spirited, competitive way to reinforce time-telling skills, adding teamwork into the educational mix.
Learn More: Teachers Pay Teachers
31. Online Time-Telling Game
Click and learn! Capitalize on your class’ love of computer games by utilizing online games to make telling time a fun, interactive experience. The digital approach prepares them for the modern world while retaining the core educational element of learning to read time. They’ll love the chance to get some gaming time in and will be telling the time before you know it!
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32. Time-Telling Puzzles
Piece it all together! Your learners will have fun piecing together these puzzles by matching the analog and digital clocks. This engaging activity is the perfect way to keep them focused and will creatively sharpen their time-telling skills. What a hands-on way to explore the links between the different formats of time!
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33. Make A Clock With Play-Doh
Time to get squishy! Allow your students to get hands-on and make their own clocks using play dough. As they mold the structure, you can draw their attention to the order of the numbers and the different parts of the clock. It’s a tactile and creative first step in their journey of telling the time as they get familiar with a clock face!
Learn More: YouTube
34. Read Alouds With Time Concepts
Turn the page on time! This story focuses on the different times throughout the day and what people usually do at those times. It’s a super way to introduce the concept of time to little learners and how we use time to structure the day. After your read, you could encourage your kiddos to come up with examples of their own daily routines.
Learn More: YouTube
35. Artistic Clock Drawings
Draw time to life! Invite your little artists to sketch their own versions of a clock, adding a touch of artistic flair. This is the perfect starter activity to open up discussions and delve deeper into their understanding of time. This creative approach will have them excited for the lesson and ready to learn!
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36. Human Clock Activity
When not let your kiddies become the clock? Form a circle with a different student acting as each clock number while two others serve as clock hands. Call out times and see if they can set their human clock to the correct time! This interactive setup is perfect for kinesthetic learners and is the perfect way to make the abstract concept of time a physically engaging experience.
Learn More: Fun 2 Homeschool