Feeding Time!

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SWBAT tell time to the half hour.

Big Idea

Students pretend to be zookeepers as they create a feeding schedule for all the animals! Great for 1st grade or a review lesson in 2nd.

Setting Up the Learning

5 minutes


We will briefly review the parts of a clock and time to the hour before starting our work for the day.


Today we are working on time to the half hour. Many parts of our day start on the half hour-Lunch starts at 12:30. Science starts at 1:30. We get on the bus at 3:30. It is important we know what the clock looks like at those times.

Objective: Your thinking job is, "How do I tell time to the half hour?"

Opening Discussion

10 minutes

"When we tell time to the half hour, we are looking at what happens when the minute hand gets on the 6, or halfway around the clock."


Review steps for telling time (from previous lessons):

  1. Start with the hour hand. Circle it.
  2. Write the hour.
  3. Look at the minute hand. Count by 5s.
  4. Write the minute.

Model using the clock to get to the half hour:

  • Watch my clock. Let’s pretend it is 8:00. 8:00 is when we start centers. Who can tell me how to make 8:00?

  • Now 1 center lasts 30 minutes. So my minute hand has to move 30 minutes. Watch what happens when I make my minute hand go 30 minutes on the clock. How did the clock change? 

  • We always start with the hour hand first. The hour hand moved, so I am not sure what the hour is. What do I do when I don’t know the hour? Lean back, lean back.


  • I'll write 8, and then ask, "Do we need to write 6 for the minute? Why not?"

Guided Practice

15 minutes

Partner talk: What do we do to figure out the time when the minute hand is on the 6?

I'll use my teacher tablecloth clock to model a few times, before having students use whiteboards to write the times that I am showing. 

I'll continue to use “30 minutes later” language to prep kids for elapsed time.

Guiding Questions:

  • Why are we saying “30” for the minute?
  • Why do we have to count by 5s?
  • Why is that the hour? It’s not on that number!
  • The minute hand is on the 6, why can’t I write 6 for the minute?


See attached video of us working through a half hour time whole group. The little girl featured was struggling with telling time, so you'll see a lot of scaffolding to help her practice. You'll also see us doing the "Lean Back" mnemonic!

Independent Practice

15 minutes

Students pretend to help a zookeeper make his schedule! After completing the schedule, Group B and C answer questions by using the chart.

Group A: Intervention

Students practice just identifying what hour it is when the minute hand is on the 6. After they determine the hour, they will count by 5s to "prove" that the 30 is correct. 

I'll work with these students in a small group.

Group B: Right on Track

Students cut out clocks to match the given times. 

Group C: Extension

Students cut out the clocks but then have to put them in order and write the times. The hour and half hour are mixed. 

See attached documents for independent practice.


10 minutes

Students bring their schedule worksheets back to the rug. Students pair up and "check" the first time-does it say 1:30? How are you sure?


Students complete exit ticket. (See attached document!)