Do you have a young learner who has a gift for seeing the big picture, but may not necessarily comprehend concepts like before and after? Does your older student struggle with basic math facts only to amaze you with an easy grasp of complicated algebraic concepts?
Sometimes our students with learning difficulties, especially the ones who are big picture thinkers, do not grasp linear concepts as easily as others. This may show up as difficulty sequencing. In other words, what comes first, next, last?
This may show up as trouble learning concepts of time. For instance, if your fifth grader, or even second grader, still hasn’t learned the days of the week or the months of the year, you may have more of a global thinker on your hands. Connections in your child’s mind are not necessarily occurring in a straight line. Rather, they are being pulled from every which direction.
Don’t worry. The ability to make such global connections is a true talent, one that pure linear thinkers may envy. These students grow up to become the inventors, the creators, the ones who can merge ideas from all different disciplines in order to solve complicated problems. Unfortunately, expecting our non-linear thinkers to learn concepts the way that most teachers teach can lead to a great deal of frustration.
Sure, we do still want to teach our struggling students how to sequence better, how to connect certain concepts in a straight line. However, we also want to tap into their strengths in order to make learning easier and more enjoyable.
One day I was working with an older student who was really struggling to learn the months of the year. The order of the months just weren’t sticking. She remembered some of the names but couldn’t always remember just how many there were, or why they even mattered in the first place.
I needed something visual, something to anchor not only the months themselves but the idea of the passage of time. So let’s see, we have 12 months of the year. We also have 12 hours in a day. Aha! The clock was the answer. With a few adjustments and additions along the way, The Clock Calendar was born.
The lesson with my student was a success. Not only that, but when my mentor came by and asked if she could steal my idea I knew I was on to something. Well OF COURSE she could steal my idea. Now you can, too.
The Clock Calendar is now available in my Teachers Pay Teachers store. You have a variety of ways to use it.
- Print the color poster as a visual teaching and reinforcement tool.
- Print, color and cut the pieces of the black and white pages for a fun, hands-on craft activity.
- Use it to create an oversized visual display.
- Find more ideas when you visit The Clock Calendar page here.
Note: If you wish to add clock hands to your creation I’ve included some on each of the cut-out pages. To attach the hands, use a single brad. Alternatively you can sew the hands on with a knot using a needle and thread. If you don’t care if the hands can move your child can paste them in place or simply draw them directly onto the clock face. So many options! Choose your favorite.
And if you’re not sure if your child knows the months of the year, just ask! Find out what your child knows today, then find out how quickly that improves after using The Clock Calendar.