Printable Paper Watch Template for Kids

Our lives revolve around time; from doctor’s appointments to brewing tea to circadian rhythms, clocks are an integral tool used in the day-to-day. Nowadays, time is displayed everywhere. It’s read aloud on the radio, flashing on every single digital device, and even appears on microwaves and ovens in most families’ homes.

As kids grow up and learn to schedule their time, knowing the time becomes a key management skill. However, with it being based on sets of twelve rather than sets of ten like many other mathematical systems, time and analog clock reading can be a difficult feat for young minds.

In 2016, an American watch store surveyed children across the world and discovered that 75% of kids cannot read an analog clock.

To prepare your children for a future of activities and events revolving around the clock, Just Family Fun has created a set of printable paper watch templates to practice reading analog clock faces!

You can choose a blank watch to design or a pre-coloured watch, slap it on your wrist, and begin learning! Continue reading to learn more about how to use our printable paper watch templates for kids and how to teach time efficiently.

Benefits to Using Paper Watches:

Telling Time in Public
The world isn’t entirely digital… yet! To ensure your child’s safety in public, they should know how to read an analog clock which may appear instead of a digital interface. This will help maintain their schedule and daily activities, especially if their phone runs out of battery.

Number Literacy
Reading an analog clock face requires complex mental math. Rehearsing these counting skills will support your child’s academic growth and capabilities in other areas requiring literacy in numbers.

Learning Competence
Similar to number literacy, reading a clock develops integral skills which may come in handy when learning other things. For instance, understanding the phrases clockwise/anticlockwise or deducing which hand describes the hour and which hand describes the minutes. Learning to read a clock is an easy introduction to applying context and previous knowledge to future learning.

What’s Included In Our Paper Watch Templates:

There are three sets in our downloadable PDF, each containing four watch templates. Each watch face shows the hours 3, 6, 9, and 12 but does not have any hands so you can draw them on.

The first set of watches have decorated bands for your child to colour in.

The second set has blank, undecorated bands. You can design and colour these in as you please!

The third set of watches have coloured and decorated bands. All you have to do is print and draw on clock hands before you’re ready to learn about time-telling!

The printable watch template sets can be downloaded completely free!

printable kids paper watch
paper watch template pdf
kids blank paper watch template

How to Make a Watch:

  1. Download and print out our watch templates
    Tip: we recommend printing in full-colour for the best graphics!
  2. Cut out each watch from the sheets
  3. Let your child choose their favourite watch
  4. Design, colour, and decorate the watch together
    Tip: laminate and re-cut your watch after colouring it in. This will allow you to draw clock faces in whiteboard marker, clean off, and reuse it!

Wrap the watch around your child’s wrist and secure it by taping the ends together so it fits like a bracelet!

Fun Learning Ideas

  1. Design themed watch bands:
    If your young one is struggling to recognize hours on their watch, try matching the watch band’s design to the time as a hint. For example, draw a night sky to represent 9:00pm or a bowl of cereal for 7:00am!
  2. Trivia:
    Draw a random time on your child’s watch and encourage them to figure out the time. As they improve their skills, try to increase the challenge, for example by setting timers!
    Tip: look at our “learning tips” below to decide what times to draw
  3. Reverse-Teaching:
    Reversely, suggest a time to your children and let them draw it onto their watch face. Double-check they’ve put the minute hand and the hour hand in the correct spots!
  4. Tell Me When…
    To encourage an awareness for time and activity durations, ask your kids to draw on their watch face what time your family does things throughout the day. For example, what time did they brush their teeth? What time did they finish lunch? What time do they go to sleep?
  5. Just Five More Minutes!
    Parents are exhausted from hearing the phrase, “just five more minutes!” from their children at parties and other social gatherings. Now, it’s your turn to ask them for five more minutes! Draw a time on the watch face and ask your child what time it will be in five minutes. Gradually increase the difficulty of your times, such as in two minutes, three hours, ten hours, and eighteen minutes!

Learning Tips

To motivate your child and celebrate their successes, start easy. Teachers recommend learning the basics of a clock first by introducing these time intervals which gradually increase in difficulty! 

  1. Start with whole hours
    E.g. 8:00, 4:00, 1:00, and 11:00

  2. Introduce quarter hours (15 minutes)
    E.g. 2:15, 9:30, and 6:45

  3. Introduce five minutes
    E.g. 12:25, 7:55, and 4:40

  4. End with individual minutes
    E.g. 3:12, 5:37, and 10:59

Ensure when drawing your clock face that your hour hand is short and your minute hand is long. If the lines are the same length, your child won’t be able to tell them apart!

Final Thoughts

You likely remember learning to read a clock as a child. It might’ve been easy, or difficult, or even embarrassing!

To ensure your own kids have the best experience learning how to read an analog clock, these printable paper watch templates are a fun and easy activity to combine creativity and learning! They can be an educational tool and fashion statement for any child interested in improving their number skills. Just remember, even if they’re struggling, your kids will learn to read a clock in good time.

If you’ve designed and coloured one of our printable watch templates for kids, we’d love to see it! Send a picture and your story to Just Family Friends to show us your learning journey.

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