Math Card Tricks


So you want to be a math magician eh... Just one more reason that math is cool....Math Card Tricks! The thing about these tricks is they work because of math. Yes, they are fun to perform. But guess what...

Math card tricks are a learning tool for demonstrating and understanding different math concepts.

Children have always been fascinated by activities that involve magic tricks, and many can be performed using a pack of ordinary playing cards.

Trick #1
Multiplication Math Magic: Impress your child with math's magical powers with a card trick that uses math to do "magic". With this cool math card trick, you'll force any card to come out of the deck on your command!

Trick #2

  • Have a friend shuffle a standard 52-card deck to his satisfaction. 
  • Then ask him/her to turn over, face up, a pile of twenty-five cards. As they count out the cards to twenty-five, act like you are intensely memorizing every single one of them in order. In truth you are only interested in the 17th card in the pile. Memorize that 17th card.
  • Turn the twenty-five card pile over, now face down, and set aside. Take the remaining cards and do the following:

If it is a two through nine card, place it face up, and count out cards up to the number ten. For instance, if you turn up a six, you would place it face up, and then count out four cards coming down, saying "Seven, eight, nine, ten." If you turned up a three, then seven cards, saying "Four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten."

If the card you turn up is an ace, ten, or picture, tell your friend that you must have cards 2 through nine for this trick and place the card on the bottom of the deck, face down like the rest of the cards. (Someone told me that aces and pictures work too, but I haven't verified it yet.)

  • Repeat this procedure until you have completed four columns of "ten counts."
  • Take whatever remaining cards you have after making the four columns, and place them face down on TOP of the twenty-five card pile you set aside earlier.
  • Now ask your friend to total up the numbers at the top of the four columns.

Say the total was 23. Counting from the very top of the set-aside-pile-plus-remainder-cards, state you are interested in the 23rd card. Just before turning over the 23rd card, state what card it is!! (It is the 17th card that you memorized at the beginning of the trick!)

If you did everything correctly, it works every time! Amazing!

And even though these problems may appear to be recreational or magical in nature but they are actually based on sound mathematical concepts.

Kids can get a lot of enjoyment out of amazing friends and family performing math card tricks. It just takes a little practice to master the tricks so that you're comfortable doing them in front of an audience of one, ten, or a hundred. O.K., I guess I'm getting a little ahead of myself.

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