Abracadabra! Pupils turn their hands to a little bit of magic

Portsmouth MP visits his former childhood stomping ground

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PUPILS performed their very own magic show in a bid to improve their behaviour at school.

A group of youngsters at Flying Bull Primary School in Buckland, Portsmouth, learned card tricks and did some mind reading.

SLEIGHT OF HAND From left, Tina Aris, Dave Neill, Liam Stewart, Landon Searles, Harley Smith and Liam Mitchell, headteacher Deamonn Hewett-Dale and Bernie Davies. Picture: Allan Hutchings (124131-236)

SLEIGHT OF HAND From left, Tina Aris, Dave Neill, Liam Stewart, Landon Searles, Harley Smith and Liam Mitchell, headteacher Deamonn Hewett-Dale and Bernie Davies. Picture: Allan Hutchings (124131-236)

It was part of work with some of the Year 4 pupils who have issues with their behaviour and need to build their confidence and self-esteem.

And the pupils enjoyed getting hands-on with magic.

Liam Mitchell, nine, said: ‘It was good because it improved our magic and it behaved how we are in class. It was fun to do.’

Landon Searles, eight, added: ‘It was good. I like to make things disappear.’

Dave Neill, learning mentor at the school, led the project with a group of 14 children.

He said: ‘Year 4 is a notoriously hard year group. Part of my job was to tackle their behaviour and try and build their self-confidence and self-esteem.

‘The magic tricks are skills they can do at parties.

‘They are skills they can use for the rest of their lives.

‘Their self-confidence has grown immensely.

‘This Year 4 group don’t always get on with each other, so we did some team building so they could get to know each other.

‘Then we looked at school rules and finished it all off with a bit of magic. Their behaviour definitely improved.

‘We wanted to show the rest of the school what we could do.’

The pupils performed to staff and then later to their fellow students.

Mr Neill added: ‘It went well. It was good to see their faces and see their teachers’ faces as well.

‘They absolutely loved it. They like that knowledge is power. They are really chuffed by it.

‘It’s a bit of a dangling carrot for them – we tell them we will practise the magic tricks but it depends on their behaviour.

‘They are getting the audience for the right reasons.

‘To make it real-life and to have the ultimate goal of having a show is something for them to build up to.’