Book clocks are pretty cool, but you should know that there is a lot of prep work involved. Generally, we don’t like our teens to use X-acto blades because they are sorta dangerous. For about a week before this activity, the staff worked sporadically cutting out the area for the clock motor inside each book. The project was relatively inexpensive because the books were donated and we already had the clock parts. We used our newly-purchased drill to make the center hole in the cover. In addition, the drill can be used to make a hole in each corner of the clock motor niche in order to help with the cutting process. (Just remember not to drill all the way through the book.)
You can glue the pages of the book together, but I saw this step as optional, and as something the teens could do themselves. Even though most of the books clocks you see online don’t have numbers, you may find that everyone in your program would like to have numbers on their clocks. There really isn’t much for them to do with the clock once it is assembled, so adding numbers extends the program a little. We used the numbers that came with the clock parts. They were originally attached to a spoked wheel sort of thing, and we removed them with wire cutters. In order to provide more design options, we set out buttons, beads, and hot glue.
Notes: If you have a mismatched clock collection, it is important to know that not all clock kits are interchangeable, even if they look like they could be. (This is something I learned during the activity.) It would also be good to have another small activity paired with this one, as it can be very short. I ended up handing out a few vinyl records. Vinyl record clocks are so popular!
Here is the site we referred to: