Re: Does time exist? « The Liberated Way

This article, about the sense of time, Does time exist? « The Liberated Way, reminded me of how our sense of time develops. Now while there are many articles on Jstor, this resource is pretty expensive, so here is a free article which describes how children experience time and how it has to be reinforced.

A child’s sense of time is very different from that of an adult. An hour, a day and a week are concrete concepts to adults but unfathomable abstracts to young children. Children, especially pre-clock-readers, exist in the present. They are not as comforted by the thought that a dental appointment will last only a half hour. Adults can think beyond the dentist, beyond the half hour, to what comes next. Children are lost in the stress of a dental appointment as they are in the joy of a computer game. Time is unrelated to the activity.

How to Make Time ‘Real’

Before children understand time in minutes and hours, they keep track of time by thinking from event to event. Time is irrelevant when they live by a predictable sequence of events: sandbox, story time, juice, games, lunch, nap. Even as children begin grade school, they may be more aware that recess comes after reading than that it begins at 10:15.

To help your child begin to develop a sense of time, set ten minute increments for her to accomplish the tasks of her daily routine. Slowly, after many mornings of ten minute warnings, she will start to get the rhythm of what ten minutes means by knowing what she has been able to accomplish within that time period.

Gaining a sense of time gives children a sense of control in their lives and helps them learn organization. Successful people manage their time well, so helping your child gain an understanding of time is an essential part of parenting.


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One response to “Re: Does time exist? « The Liberated Way”

  1. Alex Jones says :

    I liked this article about how a child sees the world, where events rather than time is the rule. The human brain works by pattern, but only in our modern society does time seem to become more important than the events that fill time.

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