How to Teach a Child to Tell Time

Written by ehow education editor
  • Share
  • Tweet
  • Share
  • Email

Teaching your child to tell time can be trying if you don't know the easiest steps to take. However, if you utilize a step by step process, your child can learn at their own pace. Five years old is a good age to begin to teach your child how to tell time.

Skill level:
Moderately Challenging


  1. 1

    Begin by pointing out the second hand on a clock or watch to your child. Explain the concept of how the second hand goes around the clock once every 60 seconds. To reinforce the concept, have your child count out loud in seconds. Work with your child each day until they understand the concept. Give your child between a week and a month to fully understand the second hand.

  2. 2

    Advance to the minute hand after your child has fully grasped the concept of the second hand. Explain how the minute hand moves once for every time the second hand goes completely around the clock. Again quiz your child on a daily basis to reinforce what they have learned. Include lessons that incorporate both the minute and the second hand. You can have your child time events, such as the length of a TV commercial. Give your child a couple weeks to a couple months to fully understand.

  3. 3

    Explain the hour hand. Describe how 60 seconds are in a minute and how sixty minutes are in an hour. Give your child questions as you have in previous steps and also have them time events around the house.

  4. 4

    Quiz your child with flash cards that depict different times on a clock. Start off with flash cards that have a marked clock at every hour. Once your child has that mastered, advance to an unmarked clock. Repeat as necessary until your child fully understands. It's a good idea to continue to quiz your child at least once a week to make sure they don't forget the fundamentals to learning how to tell time.

Don't Miss

  • All types
  • Articles
  • Slideshows
  • Videos
  • Most relevant
  • Most popular
  • Most recent

No articles available

No slideshows available

No videos available

By using the site, you consent to the use of cookies. For more information, please see our Cookie policy.