Let’s learn how to tell the time in English.
1. Asking for the Time
Here are some common ways:
- What’s the time?
- What time is it?
You can use these anywhere. If you want to be more polite, say:
- Could you tell me the time please?
- May I have the time?
2. How to Tell the Time
Here’s a clock.
There are two ways to tell the time.
The first way is to say the hour first, and then the minutes.
Here’s another example:
Now you try. What’s the time?
You can also add a.m. or p.m. afterwards. Use a.m. for the morning, before twelve, and p.m. for the afternoon and the evening, after twelve. For example,
- It’s eleven forty-seven a.m.
If the minutes are 00 – we simply say o’clock.
So now you know one simple way to tell the time.
3. How to Tell the Time With Past and To
There’s another way to tell the time.
You say the minutes first, followed by past or to, and then the hour.
We say past for this side:
And we use to for this side:
What’s the time now?
When you tell the time like this, instead of saying 30, we say half.
And instead of saying fifteen, you say quarter.
In this way of telling the time, we don’t usually say a.m. or p.m. Instead, we say
In the morning, in the afternoon or in the evening.
- It’s quarter to nine in the evening.
If the time is twelve o’clock at night, we can say it’s midnight. If the time is twelve o’clock in the day, we can say midday, or noon.
That’s the end of the lesson, thanks for watching!