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How to Teach a Child Magic

A common question we get is “how can I get my child started in magic?”

This is a hard question to answer. Magic is a difficult art that takes years of discipline to master. It’s not something that you can pay $9.95 for at Wal-Mart and suddenly be successful.

With that said, there are some things you can do as a parent to give your child a gentle push in the right direction.

1.) Get them an easy trick they can perform well.

I’ve made a couple posts about this before. Positive reinforcement early on is critical.

I don’t really care what it is. Your child needs something easy they can learn and perform quickly. This will encourage them to pick up and work on more difficult material.

2.) Control Their Audiences

It won’t be long before your budding magician puts on his or her very first show!

As a parent, you need to think through who gets to see it. Make sure it’s filled only with supportive, friendly people.

If Uncle Billy is a jerk who’s going to give your kid a hard time throughout the whole thing, don’t invite him. Even if he claims it’s “just joking around”, don’t invite him.

I know this sounds harsh, but as I said before at this stage positive reinforcement is critical.

At some point your little performer will need to learn how to deal with jerks. Today isn’t that day. Today we’re building confidence.

In many ways the first performance is what makes or breaks a magician’s future. This is the point where the “magic bug” either bites you or it doesn’t.

Don’t let one bad apple ruin the moment.

3.) Discourage Them from Performing At School

This is an extension of controlling the audience. Other kids can be brutal and the last thing you want is your child bullied for a trick’s secret.

Also, school’s are for learning. As your child grows more confident in his or her skills they have the potential to become a classroom distraction. As a parent you want to avoid this.

Finally, other kids are probably not going to provide the types of responses your budding magician needs early on. In particular 9 – 10 year old boys have a tendency to think they know how everything in the world works…

Most of my classmates didn’t even know I was a magician until my high school talent show.

4.) Accept That You’re Going to See The Same Trick 77 Gazillion Times

Practice makes perfect. A lot of magic requires a spectator’s involvement. It’s impossible to practice the effect in its entirety any other way.

Guess who your kid needs to practice on? Uh-huh… You.

That means you’re going to see the same trick performed countless times to the point you’re going to be sick of it. It’s like listening to the same song over and over again.

Here’s the thing, once that piece of magic is perfected it’s something they can take with them for the rest of their lives. I make my living performing magic. Some of my “staples” I started learning at age 13.

The Bottom Line…

Getting your child started in the world of magic is a worthwhile endeavor. Be prepared though. It requires just as much patience and endurance on your part as it does theirs!

If you have a group of kids interested, we offer magic classes! Contact us for more information!

Image by steveandpolo licensed under Creative Commons.

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ShizDiz is a Mission, Not a Magic Show.