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Montessori-Inspired: The History of Time Measurement {Free Printables}

Ah, the wonderful sense of time! When I was a little girl, maybe five years old, I remember thinking that I had seen the minutes go by on my parents’ digital clock, one with giant red numbers, but I recalled never seeing 60 minutes. I would sit there, watching the clock as the minutes went by… 57, 58, 59… almost there… almost 60!The History of Time Measurement

Montessori-Inspired: The History of Time Measurement

I’d watch and watch and as any child would, I felt as if years were going by and the number wasn’t changing. I decided to bounce on my parents bed, to wait for the long-awaited 60 to pop up, but by the time I looked, bam! a double zero was on the minutes’ place. I had missed it again! I remember so vividly being so disappointed.

And then, it happened, I learned about time and how, even though there are 60 minutes in one hour, we don’t actually see a 60 on the clocks. I felt silly afterward for hoping to “catch” the 60 on a clock when it was non-existent all along. Learning about time was enlightening and fun for me.The History of Time Measurement

The History of Time Measurement

In this post, you will see how I introduced my children to the sense of time and what activities we did. They were so fun and I loved being able to teach them about it. We first started by reading. We simply love to read and I am always finding books on all kinds of topics.

Here are some of the books we read:

Timelines, Timelines, Timelines! (Displaying Information)Timelines, Timelines, Timelines! (Displaying Information)The Official M&M's Book of the MillenniumThe Official M&M’s Book of the MillenniumHow Plants Grow (TIME FOR KIDS® Nonfiction Readers)How Plants Grow (TIME FOR KIDS® Nonfiction Readers)How Many Seeds in a Pumpkin? (Mr. Tiffin's Classroom Series)How Many Seeds in a Pumpkin? (Mr. Tiffin’s Classroom Series)Just a SecondJust a SecondTelling the Time (Usborne Farmyard Tales)Telling the Time (Usborne Farmyard Tales)

Timelines, Timelines, Timelines!

The Official M&Ms History of the Calendar

The Official M&Ms Book of the Millennium

Seeds of Time

Just a Second

It’s Almost Time

Telling the Time

Telling the Time (Dry Erase Book)

Our favorite book of all was the book Just a Second. It was so much fun reading through it. It is broken down so well and it was easy for my children to follow. They were fascinated by the facts given in the book. I highly recommend it. My second favorite was Timelines, Timelines, Timelines! because it gives a really awesome list of many different kinds of timelines.

Montessori-Inspired History: Sense of Time {Free Printables}

We have a calendar on the wall of our homeschool room. We visit it daily and we learn about the days, weeks and months. It was definitely important, in my mind, to introduce the sense of time using clocks and teach my children how seconds, minutes and hours connect to the calendar that includes days, weeks and months.

Montessori-Inspired History: Sense of Time {Free Printables}



Montessori at home Homeschool Printables We Used: 

The first printable I made (that you can get for free in this post) is the time pyramid. I printed ours on draft mode on cardstock and cut all the pieces. All the pieces are numbered (to know the order in which they go). My son glued the layers together and we let them dry for a few minutes before going through every layer. It was fun! Every layer breaks down the second, minute, hour, day, week, month and year.

Montessori-Inspired History: Sense of Time {Free Printables}

The second printable we used were the 3-part cards. In this set, I made clocks and calendars highlighting different units of time: seconds, mounts, hours, days, weeks, months and years. First, I printed two sets of these cards and cut them up. My daughter matched them up with the correct names. Next, my son set the control of error set and he simply matched the cards to the nomenclature cards.

Montessori-Inspired History: Sense of Time {Free Printables}

The third printable set I made for my children was a set of cards that say “Things to do in a….” second, minute, hour, day, week, month and year. Each card has three cards that go under it. For example, under “Things to do in a second,” we have a card with “take a sip of water,” etc. Each set is numbered and have a different colored frame as a control of error.

My children were as amazed by these fact as they were while reading Just a Second. We thoroughly enjoyed sorting these cards and reading through them. My son chose the set that caught his attention the most and he chose “Things to do in 1 minute” and the card says that 265 people are being born in the world. Can you imagine?! Cool!

Montessori-Inspired History: Sense of Time {Free Printables}

Lastly, I introduced the hourglass (one, three and five minutes) as well as analog and digital clocks and watches. They were fascinated that all of these contraptions can tell time! I also showed them a video on youtube about how a sundial (or shadow clock) works. Wow, were they amazed or what?

We also played a game to go around the hour to find as many clocks and watches as we can. We found a clock on the stove, the microwave, my laptop, dad’s computer, my cell phone, our home phone, my watch in the bedroom, dad’s alarm clock on his nightstand, and the list goes on.

Montessori-Inspired History: Sense of Time {Free Printables}

Grab the three free printables here! 🙂


Thank you for visiting our Montessori-Inspired: The History of Time Measurement post! You might also like:

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Timeline of our Family — Intro to Montessori History by The Kavanaugh Report

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How to Introduce Time to Kids by Study at Home Mama

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Learning the Timeline of European History by The Pinay Homeschooler

Our Montessori-inspired Timeline of Life by Every Star is Different

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10 Christmas Carols FREE Printable Pack
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Patriotic Themed Copywork Notebooking Pages Famous World Explorers Notebooking Pages


  1. This is great! I love your ideas! My kiddos do so well with time to the five minute mark, but they just can’t seem to understand the seconds and individual minutes. I may be using some of your ideas and book recommendations as we study this again later this year. Oh, and I love the story you shared about yourself as a little girl in the beginning. It definitely made me laugh.

  2. This is a fantastic unit study! I love the time pyramid and can’t wait to make my own. Thank you for the printables. I also want to get a copy of the Timelines book.

  3. I enjoy the emails I recieve from your site. It’s always so encouraging. I’m exited about the giveaway, many of the items would be welcome in any home, I’m sure. I don’t usually comment and fee a little Silly doing so now jusg because of the giveaway, but it’s a great one! We love art projects, music, cooking. Thank you for the effort you put into your site.

    • Thank you so much! Please don’t feel silly about commenting! Comments like yours make my day, my week! 😀 Thank you for entering the giveaway!

  4. I just love everything about this post! I never really introduced Mavi to time, so this post will come in handy with Vito. This is a strong foundation of teaching kids the sense of time and everything that evolves in it. Love it!

  5. What an awesome set of printables! My son is really into time right now. We have bought him a watch, but I know he will love these resources too. Thanks!

  6. Hurrah, that’s what I was exploring for, what a stuff!
    present here at this weblog, thanks admin of this web page.

  7. Thank you for your awesome printables…I have a 8 year old daughter…we homeschool using the classical model and I throw in lots of Montessori. The hands-on printables and ideas help her to learn. Thank you again!

  8. All of the info you give is so helpful? The Calendar book link is not working for me. Would you mind to tell me the author?


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