Toddler Time

Toddler TimeThe Toddler has become obsessed with time. She already had a long-standing clock obsession, but that was entirely unrelated to any interest in the time. No, The Toddler simply liked to point at clocks and watches, shout ‘tick tock’, and demand the singing of ‘Hickory Dickory Dock’.

The Toddler mastered the concept of specific, named times some, well, time ago. She knows ‘brekkie time’. This is the time when The Toddler eats her breakfast. She knows ‘din din time’. This is the time when The Toddler eats her dinner. She knows ‘lunchtime’. This is the entire period between ‘brekkie’ and ‘din din’, during which The Toddler will say in a hopeful voice every ten minutes, ‘Lunchtime, Mummy! The Toddler is wanting lunchtime. Lunchtime now, please, Mummy.’ In essence, until now, The Toddler has been aware of time as a food-related concept.

(Incidentally, whilst on the topic of lunchtime, Silly Mummy’s greatest achievement as a mother? Convincing The Toddler that ‘lunchtime tidy up’ is not only an actual thing, but an actual fun thing. Silly Mummy announces it is lunchtime tidy up time, and The Toddler excitedly runs around the room picking up toys. Take that, Super Nanny. Silly Mummy expects to receive the Nobel Prize in Toddlers any day now…)

The Toddler also knows some time-related words. There is ‘soon’. The Toddler understands that ‘soon’ means lunchtime will be in exactly one second, and should therefore be immediately mentioned again to Silly Mummy. There is ‘later’, which means lunchtime will be in three seconds and, to be safe, should probably be immediately mentioned again to Silly Mummy. ‘Tomorrow’ is a word The Toddler knows denotes, ‘Ooh, brekkie!’ Then, of course, there is ‘now’. Now is often used when The Toddler is being asked to do something. She is aware it means do it so slowly it is not done until tomorrow: ‘Ooh, brekkie!’

These have been The Toddler’s dabblings in the concept of time. Until now. The new obsession. What time it actually is. So The Toddler now likes to ask about random times. Constantly.
‘What’s times it?’
‘It’s 7:20.’
‘Oh, okay, fine…What’s times it now?’
‘Oh, okay, fine.’ The Toddler wanders away. She reappears.
‘Mummy, what’s time now?’ Silly Mummy has been telling The Toddler the actual time, though fully aware that the answer ‘hippo blue sausage’ would also be met with a nod and an ‘okay, fine’.

Despite not having any clue what the numbers mean, The Toddler has evidently picked up on the fact that Silly Mummy’s answers to what time it is do frequently involve the use of numbers. It is lunchtime. The Toddler has been asking for lunchtime all morning. Therefore, Silly Mummy expects a yell of ‘lunchtime’ when she asks The Toddler, ‘Do you know what time it is?’
Instead, The Toddler pauses, ‘Er…yes. Time 1,2,3…7?’

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  1. Ahhh this is so funny! Such hard concepts aren’t they? I still get yesterday and tomorrow muddled. My son has a deep love of clocks. I would say it’s definitely an obsession with him. (Cue easiest shaped birthday cake ever!). No concept of time yet though, well except for the ‘now’ at the start of sentences which isn’t really anything to do with time but I think I must say a lot…

    • Silly Mummy says:

      Nothing like small children to make your realise what words you overuse! I wonder what it is about clocks that make so many little kids love them so much? Still, as you say, simple birthday cake! Time is such a difficult concept. So difficult to explain, so no wonder children find it hard to understand.

    • Silly Mummy says:

      Thank you! I think they all love the housework when they are too young to be much help, and have realised it is not actually fun by the time they are old enough to do it properly!

  2. Erica Price says:

    Time is one of the most difficult concepts to teach children and the one that my sis in law (who is a reception teacher) says is really important to work on. It takes so long for them to understand time that you need to start early. That said I am with toddler on the food focus.

    • Silly Mummy says:

      Yes, food based understanding is the way forward! Yes, my mum taught infant school too – very difficult to teach children to understand and tell the time. Relative time is so hard for them too – so difficult for them to comprehend how long ago something was or how far in the future it will be. Thanks for popping by!

  3. Love it, my little girls concept of time is much the same, and she now loves to read the clock and tell me what numbers it says in an authoritative voice! Or if there is no clock to hand she will gleefully announce that it is 7.42 🙂 #sharewithme

    • Silly Mummy says:

      7:42! So specific! They always think an authoritative voice makes everything true, don’t they? Thanks for popping by!

  4. Mummaknows says:

    Once again, I giggle with glee from your posts. So relatable. Especially lunch time being the entire time from brekkie to dindin haha!! Right when my toddler gets up, she says, “I’m still hungry mummy”…..but….we haven’t even had brekkie yet…? Todders 🙂 Thanks for linking with #wineandboobs

    • Silly Mummy says:

      Thank you so much! Ah good – other people have toddlers whose lives revolve around food too! Thanks for popping by!

  5. Love it! I think it’s great she has an interest in time, probably the asking every minute is driving you slightly insane! My husband does lunchtime tidy up, I never knew it was a thing!

    Thanks for linking up with Small Steps Amazing Achievements :0)

    • Silly Mummy says:

      I don’t think it is a thing – probably just your husband and me! Two lone maniacs trying to tidy a house part way through the day and with small children still in it! Thanks for hosting #SSAmazingAchievements

  6. Jenny says:

    That’s awesome that your toddler loves time. I wish mine even would concentrate long enough to hear what it is. hahaha Thank you ever so much for linking up to Share With Me #sharewithme

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