Question Video: Using Analog Clocks to Compare Durations Using “Faster” and “Slower” Mathematics

Daniel and Victoria both started getting ready at the same time. Who got ready faster?


Video Transcript

Daniel and Victoria both started getting ready at the same time. Who got ready faster?

You know, if we want to compare whether someone is faster or slower, it’s very important to know when someone starts doing something and when they finish. In this question, we’re told that Daniel and Victoria both start getting ready at the same time. This means we don’t need to worry about the start time. We can think of it as being a little bit like a race to get ready. They both started at exactly the same time. So, what matters is what time they finished.

Now, if we look at the clocks that are underneath the question, we can see the time that both children finished getting ready. And there is something interesting about those times. Can you see it? The minute hand, which is the orange hand on both clocks, the long hand, is pointing to the number six. This means that since it was an o’clock time, it’s gone half the way around the clock face. In other words, these are both half-past times.

Now, if we begin with Daniel’s clock and we look at the hour hand, which is the shorter hand, we can see that it’s between the numbers eight and nine. In other words, it’s gone past the number eight, and it’s on its way to number nine. But it hasn’t got there yet. This shows the time half past eight. On Victoria’s clock, the hour hand is halfway between the seven and the eight. It’s gone past the seven, but it hasn’t reached the eight yet. The time is half past seven. Now, we know that Victoria’s time is earlier than Daniel’s time because half past seven comes before half past eight. We could also say that Daniel finished later than Victoria because half past eight is later; it comes after half past seven.

But this question doesn’t want us to use words like earlier and later; it asks us who got ready faster. Now, this is where we really need to think carefully. If both children started getting ready at the same time, would you expect the child who gets ready faster, the person who does it really quickly, to finish earlier or later? We’d expect them to finish earlier. We can imagine Victoria, who’s already got ready, tapping her watch and saying, “Come on, Daniel, hurry up!” The person who finished faster is the person who finished earlier. And that person is Victoria.

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