* Time will tell

This post is about my whacked sense of time, as well as the importance of timing in teaching.  Timing and pacing are key to a successful lesson.  There are some teachers who don’t look at the clock as often as I do, but I’m not checking the time to see when the lesson’s over.  I am trying to make sure I stay on track.  I usually plan my lessons with small chunks of different activities.  That reduces fatigue and boredom, allows kids the opportunity to absorb information, and provides time to move around.  It’s a better match for kids who are very active, hate school work, and must work extra hard (with repetition) to overcome dyslexia.  I do tend to get so involved in the lesson that I lose track of time, even though my lesson plans indicate how long I will spend on each segment.  Oops!

So what kind of clock do I prefer?  Analog, the dinosaur of clocks, for beginning clock watchers.  Why?  The significance of the number 12 in our non-metric systems of measurement, the vocabulary of quarters, sets of 15, fractional parts of a whole, and especially the visual relationship of seconds, minutes, and hours.  Like cursive handwriting, though, who uses analog clocks in everyday life?  And I agree that all of those concepts can be taught through other means, but where’s the fun in that?

clock

I have been using a cheapo analog clock but its distinct tick-tock was seriously distracting to a student.  So I purchased another cheapo clock, this time digital, since we had already worked that analog through every skill I could think of.  The cheapo digital lasted about 4 seconds after I installed the batteries.  The clerk asked me if I wanted to exchange it with a twin when I returned the defunct model.  Seriously?  I went online and paid more for another digital clock.  This one had bells and whistles like temp and days of the week.  The instructions were very clear: set the year/ date, and the correct day of the week will pop up.  Well, the day has always been two days behind!  No one is looking except for me, but since I’m always a bit confused about the day anyway….  So I reset the clock several times and gave it a couple of good knocks, but to no avail.  Then late last night, when I wasn’t thinking about ANYTHING, I could see myself setting that clock.  I had punched in 2014!  Oh dear, I wish I had picked 2015.  I’m not sure what excuse I can make for selecting 2014, except that it was a very good year.

7 thoughts on “* Time will tell

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