Hands-On Crafts
Make a Magic Trick and Amaze Your Friends!
Not only is Oct. 31 Halloween, it’s also National Magic Day in honor of Harry Houdini, the magician, illusionist and escape artist who died Oct. 31, 1926. Kids can conjure up some magic of their own by preparing, practicing and performing this simple magic trick. Don’t worry moms and dads, we aren’t talking about recreating Houdini’s famous Milk Can Escape, but this disappearing act is sure to leave you astonished and amazed!

Ages: 4 to 12
Time: One hour
Skills Required: Cutting, painting, gluing, drawing, following directions
Materials: Black and white construction paper, scissors, Styrofoam cups, knife, glue, pen or pencil, black paint, paintbrush, cardboard

1. Create the materials needed for your magic act.
• Begin by cutting a ring from the top of two Styrofoam cups. An adult should help young children use a knife or scissors to carefully cut through the cups, about a half inch from the rim of the cup, so that the result is two unbroken rings of Styrofoam.
• Next, trace a circle the size of the ring onto a piece of black construction paper. Cut out the circle and glue it to the bottom of one of the rings. There should be no paper showing on the outside of the ring and no space showing on the inside of the ring.
• While this piece is drying, cut a circle a little smaller than the size of the Styrofoam ring from the white construction paper.
• Draw a picture on the paper. (Magicians frequently make rabbits disappear, so you may want to draw a smiling rabbit face!)
• Also, cut a piece of cardboard into a square that is slightly larger than the size of the rings (about a 4-inch square).
• Paint the cardboard black.

The ring with the paper attached is your “secret” ring and the black cardboard is your “magic” card.

2. Set the stage.
• Before your audience arrives, lay a piece of black construction paper (the exact same color as the paper you glued to the bottom of the Styrofoam ring) on the table.
• Place the secret ring on the paper on your right side. Place the other ring on the paper on your left side and place the small circle of paper with the rabbit picture inside this ring.

3. Perform the trick.
• Inform the audience that you will astonish them by making the picture of the rabbit disappear right before their eyes!
• Begin by placing the magic black cardboard card on top of the secret ring (the one on the right).
• Then pick up the other ring (on the left) and place it on top of the card (that is now on top of the other ring).
• Next, lift both rings with the cardboard in between very carefully so the audience can’t see the secret of the bottom ring, and place it on top of the rabbit picture.

• Finally, after a few magic words and a wave of a magic wand, remove the top ring and the magic cardboard to reveal that the rabbit has amazingly disappeared! (Of course, the rabbit is actually hidden under the false bottom of the secret ring.)