Sunday, November 6, 2011

How to Read A Clock

The Friday before clocks were turned back an hour, I began our first lessons on how to read a clock. I have much, much more work to do. I have a chalkboard in my classroom so I use it on occasion along with the Montessori materials: the long five chain and the clock model with usable hands. There is so much paper work out there for telling time. I am trying to avoid all of that now and instead, as we always light candles at lunch and for our afternoon work, I will next do a lesson on telling time by measuring increments of a candle burning. See below for a section taken from a post I wrote about this work during my first month of writing The Moveable Alphabet:

I am now remembering a lesson I did years ago on measuring a half an hour. I took two identical tapered candles and placed them in identical candle holders so that their height would be exactly the same. Next, I lit one candle and set a 30 minute cooking timer. When the timer sounded I immediately blew out the lit candle. I then placed the now slightly shorter candle next to the one that was not lit and made a mark completely around the second candle which was level to the lit candle's current height. The fine line which ran around the never lit candle represented a half an hour. I repeated these acts until the first candle was only a small stub and the second had several rings which denoted 30 minute increments. The next step was to wait for another day (so as not to overwhelm the children) and then light the marked candle and see if the markings were correct. My five year olds wanted to watch it the entire time. Yes, they did match - candle and clock. What a great memory of a successful presentation.

1 comment:

Kim said...

this is a great idea, thank you!