Not a Timeless Piece


Why is it so hard to count time? 

Remembering which months that are longer and which ones are shorter, describing how long two weeks actually are and understanding how much is left of a year are a few examples of difficulties both adults and children have when navigating their inner calendar. 

In my project, I’ve set out to explore if  there is a efficient way to visualize time for children, so that they early on understand how a year works and an idea of how much time a day, a few weeks, a month and even a year actually is. Along the way I’ve dwelled deep into the world of artefact learning and how learning and play goes hand in hand, but also how social background can affect a childs ability to later in life manage planning and have a natural sense of measuring time. 

Therefore, I wanted to create a tool for children that would visualize time in a way that they can understand and learn. The tool is supposed to be made for public schools, with focus on the year 1-4 in elementary school which is the years when children learn the most about counting time. 

Combining practice clocks with perpetual calendars, adding playfullness and integrating gameification, I came up with my marble path calendar. The children get to build a marble path each month, leading a steel marble representing the current day down into the correct month slot. They can place out notes for coming events and place out blocks to show when there is a break. 

366 marbles, color coding and a marble path is all it takes to grasp time.

Project info
Erik Skans Mächs
Presskit (1.41 MB)