Numeracy - It's all just a matter of time

26th August 2011 at 01:00

What the lesson is about

There are two main areas in learning about time: the duration of an event and intervals between events; and the recording of a particular time when something takes place - in either analogue or digital form. This lesson helps pupils get to grips with both.

Taking it further

Telling the time can be particularly challenging for children because the units of measurement have not been converted to a metric system. Numbers associated with time do not behave like "normal" numbers: for working out time problems, the common strategies of bridging through 10 or 100 are not usually appropriate and the intervals on the clock are 12 or 60, rather than the more familiar decimal landmarks.

The interactive resources in this collection help children to practise estimating and recording duration of familiar activities and work out intervals between events. Longer units of years, seasons and decades need to be understood, alongside shorter units of seconds, minutes, hours and days.

The How Long Does It Take? activity gives children a sense of short durations. They can be timed doing a series of repetitive actions (how many hops can you do in five seconds?) and results can be recorded in the table.

Stop Watch helps them to gain a sense of, say, 10 seconds and asks them to close their eyes and put their hands up when they think the time is up. You can use the stopwatch to time classroom activities such as tidying up.

In My Life - A Timeline, you can trace a child's development by dragging the images representing milestones onto the timeline. This helps pupils to get a sense of time over a longer period, to use as a frame of reference for understanding phrases such as "in five years' time" or "next year".

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