At What Age to Buy Kids a Watch?

One of the most beautiful qualities about kids, especially kids at pre-school age, is their ability to ‘disappear’ in the moment, to bury themselves in play and completely lose sense of time.

There’s an eternity behind them, an eternity in front of them and they couldn’t care less. There’s only now!

While the kids play, an adult world lives its own life just outside their safe bubble. A life characterized by accountability, maturity and ambition, and a world where everyone and everything is subject to the clock.

So when is the right moment for parents to consider buying their kid a wristwatch?

In other words, when is the time appropriate for parents to introduce their kid to the importance of keeping track of time?

Teach Your Kid to Tell Time

Before even considering buying a wristwatch for a kid, it seems reasonable to make sure the kid knows how to tell time first, or at least has started the learning process.

This is one of those tasks in life that parents often fear the most! One that requires patience and willpower, unfortunately often followed by frustration and doubt.

But fear not, there’s hope!

Teach your kid how to tell time using this method recommended by experts.

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5 Reasons to Wear a Wristwatch

So why should a kid wear a wristwatch in the first place?

Here’s my most important reasons.

REASON 1: Making Deals With Your Kid

Once the kid has learned how to tell time, it’s far easier to make agreements, e.g. when you are going to pick up your kid from school, and while wearing a wristwatch, there is really no excuse for the kid not to live up to the agreement, unless the understanding of how to tell time is not yet fully in place.

REASON 2: Faster Learning

Which quickly brings us to Reason 2.

If the kid is still learning how to read the clock, a wristwatch is an excellent opportunity to turn this learning into reality.

When you make an agreement with your kid it’s easy to point to the face of your kid’s watch and explain how the hands should be at a specific time.

With a digital watch, the explanation would probably be easier, but I still recommend the kid’s very first wristwatch to be of the analog type, for several reasons.

Take a look here and see why.

REASON 3: Convenience

Many kids get a cell phone (mobile phone / smartphone) at an early age and it can certainly have its benefits. Apart from the main function of a cell phone, it’s also capable of informing the correct time, so one could well argue that a wristwatch is unnecessary.

The difference, however, is that a cell phone is heavier and larger and for that reason often located in the school bag or in a jacket pocket, and thus the kid doesn’t always have the cell phone at hand in the same convenient way as a wristwatch.

It’s not always very convenient for a kid to have a cell phone in the pants pocket either, as the pants pocket is often too small.

A simple twist with your arm and you know what time it is, that’s one of the major advantages of the wristwatch over the cell phone.

REASON 4: Safety

It takes 2 seconds to check the time on a wristwatch, but it takes longer to see what time it is on a cell phone.

With a wristwatch, the kid avoids attracting unnecessary attention compared to a cell phone, which in the hands of a defenseless kid, in certain situations, might tempt nearby strangers. Especially in areas where the kid does not move normally.

REASON 5: It’s Cool!

There’s no doubt that many kids find it cool to wear a wristwatch. It gives a feeling of independence and maturity that will boost the self-confidence with most kids.

If the watch is designed to create an association with Batman, LEGO, Disney, or whatever the kid is interested in, then there is something extra to show off to the friends!

At What Age Should a Kid Wear a Wristwatch?

This depends on when the kid is capable of reading the clock.

Kids are different and in short there’s no particular age at which kids are expected to be able to read the clock, but it’s reasonable to have this knowledge in place when the child starts in First Grade.

First Graders are expected to be able to receive a message and execute it without asking too many questions, including messages related to being in a particular place at a particular time.

The start is usually soft, but to understand what time is, and especially to be able to understand a school schedule, is an important part of everyday life in a school.

In other words, the time around First Grade, and preferably a bit sooner, is a great time to have your kid wear a wristwatch.

However, there’s always exceptions to golden rules.

Some children are deeply fascinated by watches much earlier and here, as a parent, you can easily exploit the opportunity and start teaching your child early on the basic elements of being able to read the time on an analog clock.

Even in the early stages of the teaching, your kid may benefit from wearing a wristwatch as a supportive element.

Which Watch Should You Choose for Your Child?

There are a lot of watches for children on the market, including the so-called Spy Watches, which I will not get too much into this time.

I just want to point out that spy watches belong to a special category of wristwatches for children as they usually have multifunctional abilities, including GPS tracking feature, which can help parents determine the location of their kid anytime anywhere.

Besides GPS, spy watches sometimes also feature video and audio recording, calling and messaging.

This time I have decided to focus on classic concept wristwatches from Timex for kids, as these fully live up to the majority of parents’ most common expectations:

  • Analog dial
  • Clear numbers in all hour positions
  • Washable and adjustable strap
  • Inexpensive
  • Child-friendly design

100% Worry-Free Replacement Plan

On top of that, Timex has introduced something they call “100% Worry-Free Replacement Plan” meaning that if your kids watch is lost or broken, they will replace it with the same or a similar style for up to one year from the original date of purchase, with no questions asked.

I think that’s pretty awesome!

All you have to do is return the watch to the address below (if you still have it) with your name and address, a copy of your purchase receipt (or other proof of purchase) and include a check for $10 USD to cover shipping and processing.

Here’s the address:

TG Service Center
1251 South Perry Road, Suite 100
Plainfield, IN 46168
Attention: Worry-Free Replacement Program

NOTICE! Make sure this offer is still valid before sending anything.
Image credit: Timex.

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Claus is a laboratory technician, autodidact guitarist, songwriter, music publisher, co-founder of App Division ApS, dad of fraternal twin boys, Sci-Fi lover, incarnated Mike Oldfield fan, pro world peace and an incorrigible coffee addict.

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