Magic Tricks

i_birthdayI like using magic tricks to get student’s attention. Along the way, they are learning a lot as you explain and show using language. A great way for rich language learning. Here’s a favorite I used to use with my kids.

I”ll guess your birthday Magic Trick

Ask your students to do the following, calculating for their own birthday. Go slow and repeat the instructions so they follow along. Use the board to show an example.

  • Enter the number 7 (7)
  • Multiply by the month of your birth (7×6=63)
  • Subtract 1 (63-1=62)
  • Multiply by 13 (62×13=806)
  • Add the day of your birth (806+8=814)
  • Add 3 (814+3=817)
  • Multiply by 11 (817×11=8987)
  • Subtract the month of your birth (8987-9=8978)
  • Subtract the day of your birth (8987-8=8970)

Now the fun! – Ask a student to tell you their result. In your head, quickly do the following

  • Divide by 10 (8970/10=897)
  • Add 11 (897+11=908)
  • Divide by 100 (908/100 = 9.08 )

Tell the student their birthday!  (for example, using my own – Sept. 8th).

They will be amazed! Tell a few more students when their birthday is. For homework ask them to try and find out how you did it! They’ll come up with some creative answers!

There are a lot of amazing science and math tricks that teachers can learn easily and which offer very powerful engagement AND language learning activities.

Magic Tricks, 3.7 out of 5 based on 6 ratings
Author: Teaching Recipes Staff
ELT Buzz or Teaching Recipes staff member - here to help and inform teachers!