Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Magic Can Conjure Up Confidence And Social Skills

Date:
September 16, 2008
Source:
British Association for the Advancement of Science
Summary:
For years, audiences have been thrilled by the amazing performances of master magicians, such as David Blaine and Derren Brown. Now, the results of a new experiment suggests that such magical feats can also work wonders with children’s confidence and social skills.

For years, audiences have been thrilled by the amazing performances of master magicians, such as David Blaine and Derren Brown. Now, the results of a new experiment announced September 11 at the BA Festival of Science in Liverpool suggests that such magical feats can also work wonders with children’s confidence and social skills.

Related Articles


The study, conducted by Rebecca Godfrey, Dr Sarah Woods, and Professor Richard Wiseman from the University of Hertfordshire, involved assessing the effect of teaching secondary school children some seemingly impossible illusions, including how to magically restore a rope that has been cut in half, and read another person’s mind.

“Learning magic requires self-discipline, an understanding of how other people think, and an ability to entertain,” noted psychologist Professor Wiseman. “Also, unlike playing computer games, it encourages children to interact with their friends and family. Because of this, we thought it might be a unique and effective way of developing an important set of psychological skills.”

The project involved 50 pupils aged between 10 and 12 at two schools in Hertfordshire. Assessments, taken both before and after just a single lesson at ‘magic school’, revealed dramatic psychological effects, with the results suggesting a significant increase in both sociability and confidence. The researchers also monitored the pupils during a standard lesson commonly used to increase self-esteem, and discovered that performing magic proved more effective at promoting both social skills and confidence.

Initial findings suggest that some children with low self-esteem may also benefit from learning and performing the tricks. Commenting on this part of the project, Rebecca Godfrey noted, “It is early days yet, but these results are very encouraging and we hope that this approach can be used to develop new and exciting ways of reaching out to these children.”

Marvin Berglas from Marvin’s Magic, noted: “These results confirm the many letters and emails that we receive from children saying how their new found talents have elevated their playground status. Also, magic encourages children to interact with their friends and family, and is also both fun and cool.”


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by British Association for the Advancement of Science. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

British Association for the Advancement of Science. "Magic Can Conjure Up Confidence And Social Skills." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 16 September 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080911142419.htm>.
British Association for the Advancement of Science. (2008, September 16). Magic Can Conjure Up Confidence And Social Skills. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 19, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080911142419.htm
British Association for the Advancement of Science. "Magic Can Conjure Up Confidence And Social Skills." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080911142419.htm (accessed April 19, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Our Love Of Puppy Dog Eyes Explained By Science

Our Love Of Puppy Dog Eyes Explained By Science

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2015) Researchers found a spike in oxytocin occurs in both humans and dogs when they gaze into each other&apos;s eyes. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Find Link Between Gestational Diabetes And Autism

Scientists Find Link Between Gestational Diabetes And Autism

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2015) Researchers who analyzed data from over 300,000 kids and their mothers say they&apos;ve found a link between gestational diabetes and autism. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Video Messages Help Reassure Dementia Patients

Video Messages Help Reassure Dementia Patients

AP (Apr. 17, 2015) Family members are prerecording messages as part of a unique pilot program at the Hebrew Home in New York. The videos are trying to help victims of Alzheimer&apos;s disease and other forms of dementia break through the morning fog of forgetfulness. (April 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Common Pain Reliever Might Dull Your Emotions

Common Pain Reliever Might Dull Your Emotions

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2015) Each week, millions of Americans take acetaminophen to dull minor aches and pains. Now researchers say it might blunt life&apos;s highs and lows, too. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins