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Time facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts

Time is the never-ending continued progress of existence and events. It happens in an apparently irreversible way from the past, through the present to the future.

To measure time, we can use anything that repeats itself regularly. One example is the start of a new day (as Earth rotates on its axis). Two more are the phases of the moon (as it orbits the Earth), and the seasons of the year (as the Earth orbits the Sun).

Even in ancient times, people developed calendars to keep track of the number of days in a year. They also developed sundials that used the moving shadows cast by the sun through the day to measure times smaller than a day. Today, highly accurate clocks can measure time in less than a billionth of a second. The study of time measurement is known as horology.

The SI (International Systems of Units) unit of time is one second, written as s. When used as a variable in mathematics, time is often represented by the symbol t.

In Einsteinian physics, time and space can be combined into a single concept. For more on the topic, see space-time continuum.

Units of time

  • 1 millennium = 10 centuries = 100 decades = 200 lustrums = 250 quadrenniums = 333.33 trienniums = 500 bienniums = 1,000 years
  • 1 century = 10 decades = 20 lustrums = 25 quadrenniums = 33.33 trienniums = 50 bienniums = 100 years
  • 1 decade = 2 lustrums = 2.5 quadrenniums = 3.33 trienniums = 5 bienniums = 10 years
  • 1 year = 12 months = 52 weeks = 365 days (366 days in leap years)
  • 1 month = 4 weeks = 2 fortnights = 28 to 31 days
  • 1 fortnight = 2 weeks = 14 days
  • 1 week = 7 days
  • 1 day = 24 hours
  • 1 hour = 60 minutes
  • 1 minute = 60 seconds
  • 1 second = SI base unit of time
  • 1 millisecond = 1/1,000 second
  • 1 microsecond = 1/1,000,000 second
  • 1 nanosecond = 1/1,000,000,000 second
  • 1 picosecond = 1/1,000,000,000,000 of a second
  • 1 femtosecond = 1/1,000,000,000,000,000 of a second
  • 1 attosecond = 1/1,000,000,000,000,000,000 of a second
  • 1 Planck time = smallest measurable unit of time

Things used to measure time

Time of day

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Time Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.