One of the objectives we (as Teachers) may want to teach 3rd standard students to learn about Time is ‘to tell time to the nearest 5 minutes.’ Most of the children by age 7-8 are able to tell time as 5’o clock, 8’o clock, etc where the short hand is at the particular number while the long hand is almost taken for granted to be at number 12.
So, for the children to learn the skill of telling time close to 5 mins, the concept of 1 hour is equal to 60 mins needs to be introduced.
Mr.Rajendran in his book, ‘Inikkum Kanakku, part-2 for Class 3 and 4’ writes about an interesting way to present this concept by introducing a sequel to the ‘The Hare and the Tortoise’ story.
“The tortoise won the race. But rabbit wants another one. Both start to practice hard. Just a day before the race, rabbit meets tortoise and boasts that I can finish the race in 1 hour. For that tortoise replies, 'Oh it takes 60 minutes for me.' Considering himself as being at an advantage, he tells the same to his friend peacock. The more sensible peacock says to rabbit, 'You are a fool.' Why do you think peacock calls the rabbit a fool." And that starts the whole new discussion on introducing minutes, hours in the subject on time.. …..”The subsequent discussion on why the peacock called the hare stupid will definitely yield to a point where at least one of the students will say that both means the same. Thus, the children arrive at an abstract concept like 1 hour = 60 minutes in an exciting way. From this, we could build on the concept how the multiplication table 5 is used to denote the minutes in clock and thereby making sense of the minutes on the clock.