Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Playing With Time

Time is a hard concept for pre-schoolers to understand, as it's something you can't necessarily touch, feel and explore. We wanted to help our little monsters explore the concept of time in a fun and interactive way, so we came up with a few fun, cheap and easy activities which allowed our little monsters to play and get physical with time:
Your preschool monster will probably already have a basic understanding of time related to the sun- sleep time when the sun goes down and awake time when the sun is up! Simples. So introducing them to a sundial is a great visual way to expand their knowledge about time.

If you're lucky enough to have  a sundial in your play space, it's a great tool to use. We were lucky enough to have a huge one in our natural reserve, just down the way. Our little monsters loved looking at their shadows and even got the concept that it pointed towards something. A Mom with a Lesson Plan created a great Homemade Sundial by using chalk and her little monsters shadow!Don't have a big enough play area? You can get a Slate Sundial (UK) Slate Sundial (USA) or make a paper sundial with your little monsters:

Get creative with time and let your little monster make their own watch. We used a roll of cardboard for the watch strap (simply cut down to size and cut along on side for the opening of the watch.) Then let your little monster paint their watch strap any colour they want. We then gave them a watch face (with the numbers already written on - older monsters can do this themselves) and then helped them to create a time on their watch face:
We asked them:
"What's missing from this clock?" - "The hands, lines, pointers"
"What time would you like your clock to say?" "2 o'clock, 3 o'clock..."
"Where is number 2 (3,6,9) on the clock?"
"Good job! Now draw a line from the centre to the number 2!"
You can even go as far as, "What do we do at 2 o'clock?" and talk about daily routine.

This was a great activity for so many different aspects of your little monsters development:
Numeracy - Creativity - Small Gross Motor Skills - Mark Making - Listening - Understanding the world they live in - Decision Making (Empowerment)

When the watches were dry, the kids started to role played with them, telling each other what time their watch said (and most of them remembered what time the clock said!) adding to our development list:
Personal Social and Emotional & Imagination

If you got the space outside, make a few big clocks (without arms) with chalk, to allow your little monsters to be physically involved with time! We created a few fun games to play on our clocks:
Our little monsters got to be the hands of the clock- pointing at the time.
We ran around the clock clockwise and anticlockwise.
Played "It's 3 o'clock now. Stand on the number 3."
Needless to say our little monsters had a great time interacting with time.

Get BIG chalk for the little monsters to use (the small chalk disappear in no time at all!)


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