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Telling Time

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  • Child's blunt-tip safety scissors
  • Construction paper
  • Paper fastener
  • Paper plate
  • Crayon, pen, or marker


  • Cut hour and minute hands from the construction paper and attach them with a paper fastener to the center of a paper plate.
  • Number the plate to look like a clock face. Use this play clock in the following activities:
    Encourage your child to move the hands around the clock as he learns the basics of telling time. (Many young children who can count to twelve can learn to tell time by the hour.)
  • Have your child use the play clock to answer questions such as, “If it’s six o’clock now, what time will it be in two hours?” and “If it’s seven o’clock now and we ate dinner one hour ago, what time did we eat dinner?” and “If it’s two o’clock now, how many hours until it’s eight o’clock?”
  • Set the play clock next to a standard (nondigital) clock. Set the time on the play clock to the starting time of an anticipated event like snack time or the start of a favorite TV show. Have your child compare the real clock with the play clock and let you know when they match.
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