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The Best Kids Watches Are Analog Watches

Learning how to tell time, like writing cursive, still counts for something.

It often seems that analog wristwatches have gone the way of the landline, the film camera, and the crowded indoor restaurant. And while you may be resigned to telling time with your phone, there’s still a chance for your kid to get a kick out of an old-school analog watch. Kids watches are not only a very cool accessory (and one with a low risk of getting lost, since they’re tethered to their hands), the best kids watches help children understand the progression of their day in hours and minutes, and help them learn the fundamentals of telling time in a much more direct way than a  smartphone or digital clock.

Related: The Best Smartwatches for Kids Who Aren’t Ready for a Phone

Kids start grasping the concept of time (though it remains somewhat abstract) around the first grade, and time becomes continually integrated into their daily lives. To help them make the connection, look for a kids watch with a face that’s big, bright, and easy to read. A band that’s cool and on-trend doesn’t hurt either.

So the next time you tell your kid they have six minutes until their Zoom class starts, they’ll know that you’re talking about something concrete, instead of some ephemeral concept, and you won’t have to nag to get things running on schedule. Just kidding: You’ll still have to nag.

This watch is a lesson in telling time. The plastic dial is both shock- and water-resistant. And the display is easy to read, showing kids the hours and minutes that get them through the day. And it's even machine-washable.

Not only is this Swatch for kids water-resistant up to 100 feet (meaning it can be dunked in water without dying a quick death), but it even survives a cycle through the washing machine. Plus, it's highly shock-resistant.

Hardy and cheerful, this Timex has lizards telling kids the minutes and hours, and the 6mm elastic fabric strap with the gecko pattern fits up to a 6-inch wrist circumference.

The orange silicone band is as eye-catching as it is durable. And the classic Swiss-made watch is made to pretty much last forever.

If your kid's style is 6-going-on-16, this is the watch for you. It's sleek and simple, with a stainless-steel face that is water-resistant and easy to read, and a band that's easily removable and interchangeable.

This ode to the webslinger has an hour dial, minute markers on the bezel, labeled hour and minute hands, and a second hand, plus some pretty killer Spider-Man art. The strap is 16mm.

A premium watch for the discerning elementary schooler, this one has a polished stainless-steel case, a dial sunburst with stainless-steel Swiss luminescent numerals and a date window; plus, it's durable, water-resistant, and has a strap made of vulcanized rubber. It has only hour markers. Water Resistance 5 Atmospheres (50m)

This blingy Elsa watch has a stainless steel case and glittering leather band. Its minute markers on the bezel and labeled hour and minute hands will help kids read the time while they're looking at Elsa's image on the dial. There's a glittery adjustable leather strap with hook-and-loop fastener.

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