Saturday, November 6, 2010

Clocks and Music

The clocks "go back" tonight so that we have an extra hour to do something with tomorrow. The clocks went back in Europe last weekend so we've been an hour closer to Europe for a week! The whole idea of time especially how we can "change" it so easily is one of the most difficult things to teach and for young students to learn.

One of the easiest ways to think about what is really happening when the clocks "go back" is to try to imagine time disconnected from the changing hours of daylight and nighttime caused by the rotation of the Earth. We can lay a transparent time zones grid on top of an image of the Earth and slide it back and forth however we want to. What we try to do is make time fit with human activity so we move the time zone grid back and then forward across the Earth's surface twice a year to make it lighter in the morning. Here's a great website that shows the time zones as well as daylight and darkness covering the Earth. If you leave it up long enough on you monitor you can actually see the area of darkness move as the Earth rotates on its axis. Here's a neat site that tells about the history of "time shifting" as it is sometimes called.

Time is also involved in music and music has always been a big part of my family's life. The pic is of my son Andrew and daughter Marie rocking out. Andrew loves the group Celtic Thunder and Marie plays music around Burlington including Honky Tonk Tuesdays. She's also a featured vocalist on Phish's Mike Gordon's latest solo album, Moss.

1 comment:

  1. I liked your post actually, it's simple yet very helpful. I hope you can also make some posts on school clocks.