Magic Club

How to Start a School Magic Club

Improve Your Magic by Learning from Each Other

Do you want to motivate your students to read, learn, and research? Arouse their curiosity with the mysteries of magic. Wunderground Magic can help you start a magic club at your school and use magical presentations in your classroom.

Magic grabs the attention of your students like nothing else! Make things float in the air, transform visually, or penetrate through solids. The basics are easy to learn and can inspire students to work as hard as their passions drive them.

Magic empowers your students with a wide range of benefits. It improves many skills including problem solving, socialization, critical thinking, and public speaking. It’s a great way to make friends, boost self esteem and confidence, develop motor skills and make others feel special and appreciated. Students can use their new talents to earn extra money for themselves and their school.

Professional performers from Wunderground Magic can help you with personal instruction, course materials, special props that make the magic happen, and access to other schools in the area organizing similar magic clubs.

Magic makes a great pedagogical tool. Take the first step to experience how magic can impact your students’ lives. Contact Wunderground Magic today!

Get Started

Starting a school magic club takes people, time, patience, a meeting place, and equipment. You need a group of students who are interested in magic and an teacher or adult guide. Finding interested students is the easy part since they are naturally curious. Just put up a sign or put an article in the school paper announcing the club.

If you don’t yet have an adult guide, approach your school principal about recommending one. Your principal may be able to find someone to help you and find a meeting room place for you.

Possible meeting places include an after school classroom, church meeting rooms, community center, or someone’s home. (When you approach a church about meeting space, make sure they know that you are talking about magic as entertainment and not turning people into toads.)

Meetings should take place once a week, and everyone who attends should present at least one trick as part of the price of belonging to the club. You don’t want people attending just to learn the secrets. You also don’t want to make it a magic class where you have to do all the work of performing and teaching. Get everyone involved and having fun.

You’ll find people with all levels of talent joining your club, from the absolute beginner to the talented performer who is almost ready to start their own show and everything inbetween. Encourage everyone, and let the more talented members guide the people just starting out. Remember, everyone has to begin somewhere.

Everyone should be encouraged to share ideas on improving performance and handling, but no one should be required to share their secrets. Discourage those who say, “I know how you did that.” and instead encourage tips and suggestions on how to make the performance stronger.

If you have the talent in your club, work toward a long term goal of creating your own magic show. Everyone can be involved even if they are not all able to perform. You will need people to move props, manage sound, assist with effects, set up, and tear down. Selling tickets to the show is a great way for your club to earn money.

Suggested Books for Learning Magic

Here are some of our favorite books to help you learn magic and provide you with hundreds of effects to inspire your club.

Magic - The Complete Course
Magic – The Complete CourseMagic is everywhere, from the big spectacle celebrity of David Copperfield and Siegfried and Roy to the quirky Penn and Teller to the spooky David Blaine and Criss Angel to the endless material on YouTube. But until now, learning it has never been easy—that’s all about to change with Magic, a book that does for close-up magic what How to Grill does for barbecue. Written by charismatic young magician Joshua Jay, Magic combines expertise, photographs, step-by-step directions showing how to perform 100 tricks, and a DVD that demonstrates 35 of them.



Mark Wilson's Complete Course in Magic
Mark Wilson’s Complete Course in MagicMaster illusionist Mark Wilson has compiled the most comprehensive magic “teach-in” ever assembled. The secrets to more than 300 classic tricks-from sleight of hand to levitation-are carefully explained in this 503-page volume.



Mysterio's Encyclopedia of Magic and Conjuring
Mysterio’s Encyclopedia of Magic and ConjuringIllustrated step-by-step instructions for rope tricks, money magic, mind-reading effects, stage illusions, everyday magic, and plenty of all-new card tricks.



Now You See It, Now You Don't - Bill Tarr
Now You See It, Now You Don’t – Bill TarrA comprehensive course in sleight of hand complete in this classic book. This simple learn-by-picture method makes it easy for anyone aged twelve and up to perform all the classic sleights just as they are done by the world’s greatest professional magicians.



Sample Meeting Schedule

To keep your club moving along, every meeting should have a schedule.

The very first meeting will be an exception because few of the students will know enough magic to present a trick yet. Use this schedule

  1. Welcome and introductions
  2. Open discussion on “What is magic?”
  3. Present your goals and expectations of the magic club
  4. As time permits discuss any of the following
    1. History of Magic
    2. Famous Magicians
    3. Philosophy of Magic
  5. Tell the theme of the next meeting
  6. Show a trick that will be taught at the next meeting.  (This encourages people to come back.)

Thereafter meetings can use the following format:

  1. Show the trick from the previous meeting that will be taught later
  2. Discuss the meeting theme (See below for suggestions)
  3. Have everyone present show a trick
    1. It is necessary that each member show a trick each week
    2. Share constructive comments on the presentation
    3. Explanations are not necessary nor encouraged
  4. Teach the trick shown at the beginning
  5. Tell the theme of the next meeting
  6. Show a trick that will be taught at the next meeting.

Suggestions for Meeting Themes

Each meeting should have a theme to help everyone explore different aspects of magic. Try to mix things up rather than doing card tricks each week, for example. Your students should be encouraged, but not required, to presented effects related to that week’s theme.

Here are some suggestions to get you started. Don’t try to cover them all, and feel free to mix and match between both the broad categories and the more specific subcatageories.

  1. What is Magic?
    1. Famous Magicians
    2. History of Magic
  2. Philosophy of Magic
    1. The Importance of Secrecy
    2. Ethics (Should you use tricks to cheat people?)
  3. Magic Props
    1. Card Magic
    2. Coin Magic
    3. Sponge Ball Magic
    4. Cups and Balls
    5. Rope Magic
    6. Silk Magic
    7. Rubberband Magic
    8. Paper Magic
  4. School Subjects
    1. Math Magic
    2. Science Magic
    3. History of Magic
    4. Word Magic
    5. Magic Around the World
  5. Performance Area
    1. Close-Up Magic
    2. Stand-Up Magic
    3. Stage Magic
    4. Street Magic
    5. Illusions
  6. Performance Aspects
    1. Patter
    2. Comedy
    3. Routining a Magic Show
    4. Lighting and Sound
  7. Categories of Effects
    1. Production
    2. Vanish
    3. Transformation
    4. Restoration
    5. Teleportation
    6. Escape
    7. Levitation
    8. Penetration
    9. Mentalism
  8. Creating Magic
    1. Building Your Own Magic Props
    2. Inventing Your Own Magic Tricks

Magical Adventures

  1. See a magic show
  2. Visit a magic shop such as Wunderground Magic
  3. Discover a magic museum such as The American Museum of Magic or Marvin’s Marvelous Mechanical Museum
  4. Attend a lecture by a famous magic performer
  5. Go to a local magician’s club such as IBM Ring 22.

If you have the means to go on a group trip. Here are some ideas.

Keep the Secrets

As magicians everyone in your club needs to keep the secrets, because magic isn’t as entertaining when they find out how it’s done. You can discover this for yourself. Take two groups of people, Show a simple trick to one group and don’t explain it, then show the same trick to another group and explain how it works. The first group will be filled with wonder, amazement, and delight (if you did it well.) The second group will be disappointed and left feeling empty. That’s why at the Wunderground we say, “Share the Wunder, not the secrets.”

Or course, the exception to this secrecy is if they sincerely want to learn this trick to share the wonder with others. Even then you will need to use your judgement as to whether this may be appropriate.

The difference between wonder and disappointment is so important, that magicians have developed an oath. You might consider making the following oath part of the requirements to join your club:

The Magician’s Oath

As a magician, I promise never to reveal the secret of any illusion to a non-magician, unless that one swears to uphold the Magician’s Oath in turn. I promise never to perform any illusion for any non-magician without first practicing the effect until I can perform it well enough to maintain the illusion of magic.

There’s a lot to learn and share and discover. Some other good places to learn more about magic include the following:

  1. This website.  Dave Foydel will help you get started in magic.
  2. Your local library.  You will be amazed at the great magic books you can find.
  3. The Internet. Here are just a few resources for teaching with magic.  Google will help you find more.
    1. M.A.G.I.C. For T.E.A.C.H.E.R.S.
    2. Teach by Magic
    3. Teaching Teachers to Do Magic
    4. Teaching with Magic
    5. How to Teach Magic After School Enrichment Programs
    6. Unfortunately most video performances on the internet are pretty bad, but they could be used as a lesson in what not to do.
  4. Other magic clubs.  Share ideas, suggestions, and best practices
  5. Your local magic shop.  As you progress, remember that help is only an visit, phone call, or email away.  The Wizards at Wunderground Magic will always be there to assist.