Math Background

Finding Time Intervals: Tips and Tricks

  • Use your school or public library to find books that deal with the passage of time. Suggestions include The Very Hungry Cat by Eric Carle, One Morning in Maine by Robert McCloskey, and When you Grow Up by Lennie Goodings.
  • Ask parents and other family members to help you collect different kinds of clocks and watches. Make a display and talk about how the clocks are alike and different. Use the clocks during the day to tell time to the hour and half-hour.
  • Ask children to what number they think they can count in one minute. After they decide, have each child write his or her number. Then set a timer or use your classroom clock and count together softly as a class. Then have children show their numbers and talk about the guesses that were closest to the actual number.
  • Cut out pictures from magazines that show people engaged in daily activities. Have children name a logical time to the hour or half-hour at which a given activity could happen. Have them show the times on a model clock.
  • Make “Bingo” cards that show times to the hour and half-hour. Give a card and beans to each child. Then show a time to the hour or half-hour on an analog clock and have children put a bean on the time if it appears on their card. Continue the game as in Bingo.
  • Have groups of children use model clocks to reinforce their understanding of patterns. Show an example, such as 2:00, 4:00, 6:00, 8:00. Have children name and continue the pattern.
  • Use your classroom calendar to mark important dates during the month, such as birthdays, holidays, and special school events. Ask questions such as: How many days are there until Anne's birthday? Is Thanksgiving closer to the beginning or the end of the year?
Calendar showing the Month of May

Houghton Mifflin Math Grade 1