Basic Skills: How to Read Time and Timetables

Understanding time and timetables is a vital skill that actually many adults do have some difficulty doing.  It is important for being independent and being able to do skills, like travelling using public transport and reading transport timetables so you can plan your schedule.

There are two types of clock, a digital clock made up of 24 different hours covering 24 hours of 60 minutes each.  So 10 in the morning is 10.00 but 10 in the evening is 22.00.  You basically add 12 to the am (morning) time for 1 in the afternoon it is 13.00 hours.  Also, there is an analogue clock made up of two sets of 12 hours.  There is 7am in the morning and 7pm in the evening.

Some adults can feel uncomfortable if they cannot read the time.  You can develop your Maths and basic skills on this website and develop strategies, such as downloading free apps that tell you the time and say the current time aloud in digital and analogue form.   


Plan a day out to an attraction using public transport. Do a schedule for the day with real life timings and look at public transport times.

Do a poster teaching others how to read the time.

Do some word time challenges and work out the answers.

You can practice reading timetables using Transum. 

Skills Wise.  BBC adult English and Maths.  Understanding time, date and timetables at Entry Level to Level 1. 

Time For Time website.  Quizzes, games, interactive clocks for telling the time as well as looking at time zones.

Doorway online practice time interactive game (Entry Levels).

Maths Made Easy explains GCSE Math questions of transport timetables to explain how to read timetables and plan journeys.

  Reading a timetable 

Reading the 24 hour clock explained.