Time is all around us – Breakfast time. Time for play group. Time for school. Party time. Dinner time. Bed time. From a very young age, children hear about ‘time’, but grasping the concept of time and learning to tell the time are not so easy. My 8 year old still struggles to tell the time and needs a lot of encouragement, and his younger brother – who is starting school this summer – is now learning to tell the time too. So when we were invited to review the EasyRead Time Teacher wall clock, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to help the boys along a little.
Disclosure: We were sent a free EasyRead Time Teacher wall clock in return for an honest review. All images and opinions are our own.
The wall clock comes in a couple of different colours and designs, and the one we received was the red and blue ‘Past & To’ clock (there is also a 24 hour clock version). At a glance, it may look like any other wall clock, but it has been designed to make telling the time as easy as possible. One of the things the boys have really struggled with, is the concept of past and to, and this clock has been a game changer – everything on the blue side of the clock is past, and everything on the red side is to. So blue = past, red = to. Simple.
As well as the large numbers 1 to 12 for the hours on the clock face, the clock also has smaller numbers around the rim for the minutes. But they are not numbered 1 to 60. No, it’s 1 to 30, and then backwards again from 30 to 1. Minutes past, and minutes to. Additionally, the clock also has quarter past and quarter to, half past, and o’clock marked on it.
So, that’s the theory, but how does the clock work in practice. EasyRead Time Teacher has a simple 3-step rule for this:
- Read the number closest to the end of the long hand (minutes)
- Say which side the long hand is pointing to (past or to)
- Read the number closest to the end of the short hand (hour)
Put it all together and you’ve just told the time! As well as the wall clock, we were also kindly sent a little teaching aid, that lets you practice different times without constantly having to reset your wall clock, and that’s been really helpful both in terms of telling time but also getting the boys to set the clock to a certain time.
Telling the time with EasyRead Time Teacher really is as easy as they say it is, and my 8 year old got it pretty much straight away. Of course it didn’t immediately translate to being able to read the time on a regular clock, without the visual aides, but the longer he has been using the EasyReader Time Teacher clock the better he is getting at telling the time on other clocks.
My 4 year old also got the concept of the clock pretty quickly, the thing that holds him up is the numbers themselves. He can count to 20 and can recognise the numbers 1 to 5 by sight, but is still learning the other numbers. So if it’s e.g. ten past one, or five to four, he can tell the time no problem. And even though he doesn’t know the other numbers up to twelve by sight, he knows to count round the clock until he gets to the right number. But for other times of the day he struggles a little, especially with the bigger numbers for the minutes. But that’s a numbers issue not a time issue, and I’m confident that as soon as he catches up on the numbers he will be able to tell the time any time of day!
The EasyRead Time Teacher wall clocks is 29cm in diameter and runs on a single AA battery (not included). Best of all, for anyone who gets irritated by clocks who tick loudly (yes, me) it is completely silent – no ticking! The wall clock retails at £24.95 and is available via the EasyRead Time Teacher website. Other products in their range include watches and alarm clocks.