We are very proud of the Time Snail. It’s an innovative approach to time lines, designed to help children get a good overview of history and a solid sense of time.
The tea towel itself is 100% cotton, 77cm by 51cm. It’s a lovely size and really nice to use. It’s also washable!
Unlike traditional time lines, the Time Snail has time arranged in a spiral. We know the least about things that happened a very long time ago, and we talk about them in really broad terms – millions of years – so the earliest times are compressed in the centre of the snail’s spiral shell. As time goes on, we talk about periods in thousands of years, then by periods of time like rulers – e.g. Queen Elizabeth I – as the time line spirals outwards. By the time we reach the more recent past, we know the exact time and day that things happened, and the spiral is larger.
The events have been chosen to link with the National Curriculum. We have used a limited number of events so that children are not overwhelmed. Once they have grasped a few historical events in order, they will have a scaffold on which to hang all the other events they learn about as they study history in more detail. As your children get older, you may wish to discuss with them the choices of what to include on the Time Snail and what to leave out. This could be a really fruitful discussion.
We have also chosen to include pictures that allow children to see how some aspects of life have changed in the course of history. You can follow the trail of transport, clothing or weapons; and note how these have changed.
The Time Snail’s eyes are clocks – one showing Roman Numerals and one showing Arabic Numerals.
We’ve put together a mini booklet, with activities taken from the Frogotter Activity Book, of fun games you can play with the Time Snail. We’ll include a paper copy with every purchase, or you can download a pdf here:
If you’d like to see the Time Snail in action, here’s a video of one of the activities: