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Broad Topics > Measures and Mensuration > Time

Friday 13th

Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

This month there is a Friday the thirteenth and this year there are three. Can you explain why every year must contain at least one Friday the thirteenth?

Crossing the Atlantic

Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

Every day at noon a boat leaves Le Havre for New York while another boat leaves New York for Le Havre. The ocean crossing takes seven days. How many boats will each boat cross during their journey?

Decimal Time

Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

Use the clocks to investigate French decimal time in this problem. Can you see how this time system worked?

Buses

Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

A bus route has a total duration of 40 minutes. Every 10 minutes, two buses set out, one from each end. How many buses will one bus meet on its way from one end to the other end?

The Time Is ...

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Can you put these mixed-up times in order? You could arrange them in a circle.

John's Train Is on Time

Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

A train leaves on time. After it has gone 8 miles (at 33mph) the driver looks at his watch and sees that the hour hand is exactly over the minute hand. When did the train leave the station?

Calendars

Stage: 1, 2 and 3

Calendars were one of the earliest calculating devices developed by civilizations. Find out about the Mayan calendar in this article.

On What Day Did it Happen?

Stage: 1, 2 and 3

Read this article to find out the mathematical method for working out what day of the week each particular date fell on back as far as 1700.

Clocking Off

Stage: 2, 3 and 4 Challenge Level:

I found these clocks in the Arts Centre at the University of Warwick intriguing - do they really need four clocks and what times would be ambiguous with only two or three of them?

Time and Tide

Stage: 1, 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

What can you say about when these pictures were taken?

Walk and Ride

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

How far have these students walked by the time the teacher's car reaches them after their bus broke down?

Hello Again

Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

Anne completes a circuit around a circular track in 40 seconds. Brenda runs in the opposite direction and meets Anne every 15 seconds. How long does it take Brenda to run around the track?

A Brief History of Time Measurement

Stage: 2, 3, 4 and 5

Noticing the regular movement of the Sun and the stars has led to a desire to measure time. This article for teachers and learners looks at the history of man's need to measure things.

On Time?

Stage: 1, 2 and 3

This article explains how Greenwich Mean Time was established and in fact, why Greenwich in London was chosen as the standard.

Rule of Three

Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

If it takes four men one day to build a wall, how long does it take 60,000 men to build a similar wall?

Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

Great Granddad is very proud of his telegram from the Queen congratulating him on his hundredth birthday and he has friends who are even older than he is... When was he born?

Hands Together

Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

Sometime during every hour the minute hand lies directly above the hour hand. At what time between 4 and 5 o'clock does this happen?

Digital Times

Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

Which segment on a digital clock is lit most each day? Which segment is lit least? Does it make any difference if it is set to 12 hours or 24 hours?

Making Maths: Make a Pendulum

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

Galileo, a famous inventor who lived about 400 years ago, came up with an idea similar to this for making a time measuring instrument. Can you turn your pendulum into an accurate minute timer?

Stage: 2 and 3

A paradox is a statement that seems to be both untrue and true at the same time. This article looks at a few examples and challenges you to investigate them for yourself.

In Order

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Can you rank these quantities in order? You may need to find out extra information or perform some experiments to justify your rankings.

Right Time

Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

At the time of writing the hour and minute hands of my clock are at right angles. How long will it be before they are at right angles again?

Speedy Sidney

Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

Two trains set off at the same time from each end of a single straight railway line. A very fast bee starts off in front of the first train and flies continuously back and forth between the. . . .

Order, Order!

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Can you place these quantities in order from smallest to largest?

Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

Can you rank these sets of quantities in order, from smallest to largest? Can you provide convincing evidence for your rankings?

Order the Changes

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Can you order pictures of the development of a frog from frogspawn and of a bean seed growing into a plant?

Now and Then

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Look at the changes in results on some of the athletics track events at the Olympic Games in 1908 and 1948. Compare the results for 2012.

Two Clocks

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

These clocks have only one hand, but can you work out what time they are showing from the information?

The New Millennium: When Did it Begin?

Stage: 2

Not everybody agreed that the Third Millennium actually began on January 1st 2000. Find out why by reading this brief article.

Calendar Sorting

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

The pages of my calendar have got mixed up. Can you sort them out?

N Is a Number

Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

N people visit their friends staying N kilometres along the coast. Some walk along the cliff path at N km an hour, the rest go by car. How long is the road?

How Long Does it Take?

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

In this matching game, you have to decide how long different events take.

Tom Learns to Cook

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

If Tom wants to learn to cook his favourite supper, he needs to make a schedule so that everything is ready at the same time.

Practice Run

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Chandrika was practising a long distance run. Can you work out how long the race was from the information?

Clocks

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

These clocks have been reflected in a mirror. What times do they say?

2010: A Year of Investigations

Stage: 1, 2 and 3

This article for teachers suggests ideas for activities built around 10 and 2010.

Lengthy Journeys

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Investigate the different distances of these car journeys and find out how long they take.

Sweeping Hands

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Use your knowledge of angles to work out how many degrees the hour and minute hands of a clock travel through in different amounts of time.

An Unhappy End

Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

Two engines, at opposite ends of a single track railway line, set off towards one another just as a fly, sitting on the front of one of the engines, sets off flying along the railway line...

What Is the Time?

Stage: 1 and 2 Challenge Level:

Can you put these times on the clocks in order? You might like to arrange them in a circle.

Do You Measure Up?

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

A game for two or more players that uses a knowledge of measuring tools. Spin the spinner and identify which jobs can be done with the measuring tool shown.

Home Time

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Alice's mum needs to go to each child's house just once and then back home again. How many different routes are there? Use the information to find out how long each road is on the route she took.

Train Timetable

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Use the information to work out the timetable for the three trains travelling between City station and Farmland station.

A History of Astronomy

Stage: 2

Astronomy grew out of problems that the early civilisations had. They needed to solve problems relating to time and distance - both mathematical topics.

Watch the Clock

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

During the third hour after midnight the hands on a clock point in the same direction (so one hand is over the top of the other). At what time, to the nearest second, does this happen?

How Many Times?

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

On a digital 24 hour clock, at certain times, all the digits are consecutive. How many times like this are there between midnight and 7 a.m.?

Wonky Watches

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Stuart's watch loses two minutes every hour. Adam's watch gains one minute every hour. Use the information to work out what time (the real time) they arrived at the airport.

Palindromic Date

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

What is the date in February 2002 where the 8 digits are palindromic if the date is written in the British way?

Times

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Which times on a digital clock have a line of symmetry? Which look the same upside-down? You might like to try this investigation and find out!

A Child Is Full of ...

Stage: 2 Short Challenge Level:

My cousin was 24 years old on Friday April 5th in 1974. On what day of the week was she born?