What is the Magic of Maths Show?

I always had an interest in performing Magic and teaching Maths, but it was only when I put them together that I discovered the power of combining these to provide enrichment for students of all ages. From Reception to adults, the the messages are the same: maths can be enjoyable, full of surprises, and looking for patterns and wondering should be at the heart of the maths we do.

Will the shows be delivered in person?

Yes. Though in exceptional circumstances it may be possible to do so online - this works, but is not the same as a live experience, of course.

What does it cost?

In the UK, £600+VAT, and any travel expenses incurred. Travel is charged at either 45ppm (driving to and from BN2 8HS) or the cost of public transport. If overnight stays are required these, are at a flat rate of £100.

How far in advance do we need to book?

It's hard to predict, but pre-Covid the diary generally filled up at least one term in advance, and some months are busier than others. For example, bookings for September, October, and January often got filled up to a year in advance, so the earlier the booking is made, the better the chance of obtaining the date you require. Post-Covid it is likely to be easier to get the dates you need!

How many shows can be performed in a visit, and how many students can watch a show?

Primary: up to three shows, each of which can be for up to 2 year groups. (Rec. may Jon Y1/2 if required)

Secondary: up to two shows, each of which can be for half or a whole year group, depending on available hall space and timetabling.

 

How should the audience be seated?

Layout

How long is each show? 

EYFS/KS1: 45 mins
All others are 60 minutes long.

What is the content of the shows?

 
The shows feature professional magic tricks (Andrew is both a teacher and a professional magician and personally trains all of the presenters) all of which either work by mathematics or which address some aspect of the children’s learning. The shows aim to raise confidence and understanding in mathematics, and are designed to meet the needs of those who love maths and those who are more reluctant to engage with it. There is a mixture of humour, bafflement, explanations, and audience participation, with members of the audience coming up to help. There are tricks with numbers, tricks with shape, money, mind-reading, illusions, and more. Some tricks are revealed, others are not. The show covers aspects of the National Curriculum for mathematics, including number, calculation, shape and space, fluency, reasoning algebra (optionally for y6 and above) and more.

 

What is in the ‘Magic for Kids’ book? 


mfkThis is a book for children who love magic. It contains lots of easy-to-do tricks, most of which work by mathematics. So children will be enjoying performing magic and doing maths for fun into the bargain. The school receives a free copy, and also gets £1 per copy ordered as a ‘thank-you’.

 

Do children need to see the show to read the book (or vice versa?)

Absolutely not. Although some tricks from the book sometimes appear in the show, the book is designed as a stand-alone guide to help children learn and perform their own mathematical tricks. As part of the visit you will receive a letter to send to parents inviting them to order copies at a 40% discount. They are under no pressure to do so but we do ask that you send the letter out either in paper or electronic form.

Is there a deposit required?

Not currently. An invoice is sent well in advance as part of the information pack (see the ‘What do schools receive?’ section) and only needs to be paid on or before the day of the visit. Payments can be made by cheque or BACS.

Can the show be performed anywhere in the world?

Yes. Although some places are too far to come for a single day so we might ask for a minimum two-day booking or for two nearby schools to book adjacent days, which halves the travel expenses.

For example, several secondary schools use one day for one of their own year groups, and the second day for their feeder schools.

Can we have a discount for multiple days?

 
Yes. There is a £50 per diem discount for bookings of two consecutive days. If two schools that are near each other each book adjacent days at the same time, they both receive a £50 discount. This discount only applies in the UK.

What do schools receive after booking?

 
All schools booking a show receive a welcome pack well in advance of the visit. This contains a letter to give parents, a link to a downloadable Word version of the letter, a free copy of Magic for Kids book to keep, some flyers, posters, a checklist and an invoice.

Are there any teachers’ notes provided?

Yes. After the visit, schools who wish to will receive a link to free teaching materials, including some teachers’ notes from the show.

What do we need to provide? 

Very little. A hall, a flipchart (for Y5 upwards), a microphone on a stand or tape mike for larger halls or theatres, a table and chair, and a jug of water are all that is needed – everything else is provided. If the presenter is traveling by car, a parking space as near to the performance area as possible.

Can we book shows and INSET training for staff? 

Yes, but it is not always practical to hold these on the same day. The day before or after is usually better.

What about delivering parents’ evenings?

 
Absolutely, and this can be done on the same day. There is an extra charge, but it is very cost-effective as there are obviously no extra travel costs involved.

Can we take pictures for our own publicity/OFSTED/Local Press?

Yes, but strictly no video or audio recording is permitted. Please make sure that ALL staff who attend are aware of this.

Can we invite parents to watch?

Absolutely, they are always welcome.

Can we find out what other schools thought about the Magic of Maths shows and CPD support?

Of course. Visit the testimonials page to see a selection of genuine comments. There are hundreds but we only show a few at any one time. No point overdoing it!

What about CRB clearance and Insurance?

All Magic Message staff hold full enhanced DBS clearance, and £15 million of professional indemnity insurance through membership of Equity. Insurance certificates are available to view on request.

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