What Time Is It?
This week's newsletter has been translated into Spanish by Ed Campos, Jr. Make sure you check it out (http://bit.ly/TTMspanish47) and tell him thank you on Twitter.
Clocks are too helpful. Sure, they're supposed to tell time and everything, but it's just too easy to see what time it is. I'm thinking that we try something like this. What time is it?
If you're used to looking at an analog clock, you know right away that it is 11:35 based on the clock above. However, if you aren't, there are a few things in play.
First, you need to know the square roots. Each of the numbers 1-12 have been replaced by the square roots of their perfect squares, and this is great practice for kids who are learning about them.
Second, you need to know which hand is the hours (the small hand) and which hand is the minutes (the large hand). Teaching kids to know the difference between the two will certainly help!
Third, you need to know that the hours count as advertised and the minutes count their value times 5. Therefore, the square root of 49 is 7, then 7 times 5 is 35, meaning that the minute value of the time is 35.
While these things may seem trivial to you as an adult (maybe), there is a lot of decoding happening with a clock and kids. Because of that, this is not an activity I would recommend with kids who are barely learning how to read a clock. For example, this is a lesson I used with my 8th grade students as a review of square roots, and could be used much earlier.
Maybe that was too tough. Try this one with your elementary-aged child:
Did you get 2:05? 12:20? 2:20? Something else?
Once your child gets the hang of clockwork, it will be time for you to lay out some new challenges. Click here for a template that you can use for your own ideas. Print it, make a copy of it in your Google Drive, open it on a writeable tablet... or maybe there's something else you can do.
And when you do, I want to see what you come up with. Take a picture and email it to me by dropping a comment below.