How To Teach Your Kids to Juggle
By Elizabeth of Busy Mom
Photo by cesarastudillo
1. Choose the objects wisely
Find three objects of approximately equal size and weight. Nothing rolling, flammable, sharp, breakable or valuable. Beanbags are good. It’s also good if your child is old enough to catch consistently or it will be a long afternoon.
2. Practice with one thing first
Have your child practice tossing one item (underhand) from hand to hand in an arc, keeping hands at waist level and elbows at sides and the tosses at an even height.
3. Add the second item
Hold one item in each hand, have them throw the item in the right hand in an arc to the left hand. When the item is at the top of the arc, have them throw the one in their left hand to your right hand. Do it some more. It’s important to be able to do it without moving around (i.e. the “running juggler”).
Go back and explain what an “arc” is. Perhaps, “throw it in a rainbow” would be more descriptive. Refrain from saying, “I told you so” when your child finally realizes why balls (they roll) or the cats (they don’t like to be juggled) weren’t a good choice when learning to learn to juggle.
5. Add the third one, and they’re juggling!
Include the third object. If your child is right handed (reverse directions if they’re left handed), have them hold two of the objects in their right hand. Start by throwing one from the right hand to the left hand. At the top of the arc, throw the object from the left hand to the right hand. Halfway through that arc, throw the other object from the right hand to the left hand.
For best results, have them keep practicing for the length of time it takes you to cook dinner.
Published January 26, 2009. Last updated June 20, 2018.