Learning the Order of Months

Learning the Order of Months

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  • A month is a collection of approximately 30 days
  • There are 12 months in total in the year and here is a list of the months in order:

  1. January – 31 days
  2. February – 28 days (29 days on a leap year)
  3. March – 31 days
  4. April – 30 days
  5. May – 31 days
  6. June – 30 days
  7. July – 31 days
  8. August – 31 days
  9. September – 30 days
  10. October – 31 days
  11. November – 30 days
  12. December – 31 days

A month is a collection of approximately 30 days.

There are 12 months in a whole year.

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Teaching and learning the order of the first 6 months of the year by finding the missing month. The missing month is may.

  • When learning the order of the months of the year, it can help to break the year down into smaller chunks.
  • These 6 months are the first half of the year.
  • Which month is missing, after April and before June?
  • It is May, the fifth month of the year.

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Printable Months of the Year List Cards

Learning the Order of the 12 Months of the Year

What is a Month?

A month is a collection of approximately 30 days. Months were originally chosen from the period of time it takes for the moon to orbit the earth. There are 12 months in a year.

The moon takes about 29.5 days to fully orbit the earth. Therefore we chose about 30 days for each month.

The 4 months of April, June, September and November all have 30 days.

The 7 months of January, March, May, July, August, October and December all have 31 days.

February is the only month that has 28 days. It has 29 days on a leap year (every 4 years). Every year that is a multiple of 4 contains an extra day: February 29th.

A month is approximately 4 and a half weeks long. We can see this in the image below.

a month is 30 days long

List of the Months in Order

The 12 months of the year are listed below in order along with the number of days in each:

  1. January – 31 days
  2. February – 28 days (29 days on a leap year)
  3. March – 31 days
  4. April – 30 days
  5. May – 31 days
  6. June – 30 days
  7. July – 31 days
  8. August – 31 days
  9. September – 30 days
  10. October – 31 days
  11. November – 30 days
  12. December – 31 days

January is the first month of the year and January 1st is known as new year’s day.

December the final month of the year and December 31st is known as new year’s eve.

At midnight on December 31st the year ends and a new year begins with January 1st.

The animation below shows the months in order.

List showing the order of the 12 months of the year

How to Remember the Months of the Year

To remember the months of the year, use the the rhyme ’30 Days Hath September’ or use the knuckle trick. It also helps to use posters and to ask questions such as, “Which month comes next?” or, “Which month is missing?” from a list.

We have a printable set of cards above, with the names of the 12 months on.

When teaching the months of the year, it is important to be familiar with the names before considering the order in too much detail.

Having the names printed out can allow you to move them around as you follow through the lesson and you can talk through the order of the months with your child.

Two copies of the months cards can be printed off and you can play snap with the cards to memorise the order of the months.

Generally having the months on display is useful and it is worth referring to the calendar and asking things such as, “What month is it?”, “What month were you born in?” to familiarise your child with the names.

However, to memorise the order of the months more quickly, it can be useful to test your child on small chunks of the year. Splitting the year into two halves or 4 quarters can help to chunk this memorisation up.

We will look at the 6 months in each half of the year, starting with the first 6 months from January to June.

What month is missing below?

January is the first month of the year It is January, the first month of the year.

Can you think of anything that happens in January?

New Year’s Day is in January.

It is helpful to link events to each month to help remember them.

Which month is missing below?

May is the fifth month of the year

It is May.

Here are some examples from the second half of the year, starting in July and ending in December.

Which is the month missing below?

December is the last month of the year

It is December, the last month of the year.

Christmas is in December.

Which month is missing below?

September is the 9th month of the year

It is September, the ninth month of the year.

Rhyme to Remember the Order of the Months

30 days hath September, April, June and November. All the rest have 31, except February alone. That has 28 days clear and 29 in each leap year.

This rhyme helps us to memorise how many days are in each month. Quickly say the rhyme to find how many days there are in a particular month.

Months that have 30 Days

The 4 months of September, April, June and November are the only months that contain exactly 30 days.

Months that have 31 days

The 7 months of January, March, May, July, August, October and December are the only months that contain exactly 31 days.

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Now try our lesson on Telling Time: Reading Hours (o’clock) on an Analogue Clock where we learn how to tell the time to the nearest hour.