Learning the time: difficulties encountered

Two main difficulties have been identified by researchers who have studied the issue of children learning to tell time. What are they?

Here are the 2 main difficulties identified by researchers1 who have addressed the issue of children learning to tell time:

1) Children have difficulty distinguishing the hour hand from the minute hand;

2) When the hour hand falls between 2 numbers, children tend to name the larger number. Example, at 10:30, the hour hand is between the 10 and 11, children will tend to say it is 11:30, not 10:30.

To counter these 2 issues and facilitate the acquisition of concepts, OLO-fusion products offer these solutions:

The hands of these clocks are distinctly colored, with the green hand of the seconds particularly attracting young people’s attention. It allows them to concretely integrate what 1 minute is like to pass, as an hourglass would.

In addition, the circle around the circle on the The Futuristic and The Delicious clock models, as well as the numbers on the learning dial of The Splintered, allow the young person to clearly identify the current time.

Learn more about the OLO-fusion solution


1Siegler, R.S., & McGilly, K. (1989). Stategy choices in children’s time-telling, In I. Lewin and D. Zakay (Eds). Time and human cognition: a life-span perspective. North Holland: Wisevier Science Publishers.

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