let’s get out the door!
School’s back in session. For most households, that means a morning of keeping kids on task and on time. Spending the better part of an hour shepherding and badgering is not only supremely unappealing, it doesn’t do a whole lot to help the child at the other end of that nag learn to budget time, stay on task, or become more independent.
While I haven’t read any scientific studies on the matter, I’m convinced that the popularity of digital watches and clocks has made it harder for time-tellers to grasp the sweep of time. When I was teaching in a classroom way-back-when, I had a sense of what a 15 minute wedge of the analog clock actually felt like…could a discussion go on, was it time to wrap up … ? Similarly, it’s clearly useful to have a sense of how long it might and should take to eat breakfast or get through a morning bathroom routine.
Inspired by a conversation I had one morning with my friend, Pat, I created a tool to help us get out the door on time as well as keep my mornings mellow: a clock divided by time and task! For the cost and time, totally worth it. -t
Step-by-step for this m-i-y project:
This clock has someone getting out of bed by 7:15, and out the door by 8:00.
1. Purchase an inexpensive clock with numbers from somewhere like Target.
2. Gently pry off the plastic cover — easy on this one by using a letter opener inserted at the front edge.
3. Create your “wedges of time” with colored paper, cellophane, or simply by coloring directly on the clock face with e.g. colored pencils.
4. Add symbols (for younger kids) or a list of the “tasks” that should be happening during that time (e.g. brush teeth, get dressed, eat breakfast).
5. Mark the minute hand — I used red nail polish — it’s the hand that identifies the sections, tasks, and sweep.
6. Replace the cover.
7. Point out the clock when necessary and let the clock do the morning reminding! 🙂