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Fun and Games

by Julie Rose, producer of “The Morning Show,” on BYU Radio

Hey kids, don’t look now, but we’re learning stuff!

“You literally trick the kids into learning,” says professional magician Brian South. He’s created a curriculum showing teachers how to use magic in their classrooms.  He taught us a thing or two while in The Morning Show studio this week. 

“It’s called a memory peg,” South explains. “The kids will remember the lesson because of the trick.” (Incidentally, he teaches Sunday School and says his students always remember last week’s discussion topic because he uses magic with every lesson.)  “Kids must be banging down your door to get in your class!” chuckled Morning Show host, Marcus Smith.

The fact is, we learn better when we’re having fun. A new card game called “My Gift of Grace” uses the same concept. 

“We recognized the need to help people have difficult conversations related to living and dying well,” says Jethro Heiko, co-founder of The Action Mill which designed My Gift of Grace. “We’re taking something we’re really good at – playing games – and using it to help us do something we’re not good at: talking about death.”

The Action Mill team discovered the need for a game about end-of-life issues after interviewing doctors, nurses, hospice workers and funeral directors.

“People need permission to have these conversations – to voice their wishes about dying – and the game gives that permission,” says Heiko. 

Like other card games, My Gift of Grace has elements of chance (a coin toss), elicits stories from players and, yes, has winners and losers.

Both Heiko and magician Brian South are using their skills (games and magic tricks) to facilitate greater understanding.  I think that’s what we’re doing at The Morning Show, too.  On a daily basis, I find myself mentioning in conversation something I learned from an interview on The Morning Show

South mentioned on The Morning Show this week that he lies in bed at night happy at the thought of school kids laughing and smiling in class because of a magic trick he taught their teacher. 

Is it too cheesy to admit I lie awake at night excited, thinking about the conversations we’ve had on The Morning Show and eager for those we’re going to bring you? 

Because I do.  

P.S. Speaking of fun and games, watch magician Brian South blow our minds live on The Morning Show

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