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Son's first day shooting

1465 Views 8 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  PA Gun Doc
Took my son, who will be seven in March, to the rifle range yesterday with the scoped 22 mag. He did well. As in he hit the paper, made some progress, and more importantly enjoyed the heck out of the whole experience. Looking for some tips/ tricks/things that have worked for you folks when teaching your youngsters to shoot or the youngsters themselves to relate what worked best for them in being taught. I drew him a picture of the scope picture, a picture of the target and then a drawing where one was over the other to show him what to look for. I adjusted the shooting rest while he looked throug the scope. he shot at 50 yards The first round of six put 1 on the paper and no other wholes. The next groups were much better and he ended up with some within 4 inches of center, several dead center but 6 inches high and a whole bunch 6,7,8 inches high and 4,5,6 inches left in a loose grouping which may be a result of trigger pull (he's shooting lefty). I'm thinking going somewhere where I can set up a target at 20-30 yards and zeroing in the gun at that distance would be a good thing- better sight picture in terms of where the cross hairs should go and better to physically see where he's looking at, etc. Any suggestions. Thanks, Keystonepaul
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Nicely done Paul. The only change I would do would be to move the target closer, as you mentioned. I'd even come as close as 15 yards. Start him close and often, then move out with each successive trip to the range.
I always start em with open sights, but that's my choice, most folks use scopes these days. How does the gun fit him, if it doesn't fit he may have a problem with accuracy!
For kids i like to keep things simple and fun targets that react, balloons, water balloons,bowling pins something that they know instantly if they hit or not.
I dont worry about group size that will come later. In the begining its all about SAFETY and fun.
Thanks foliks. Some good suggestions. I did think about balloons, but since I was going to an actual PGC range. Thinking about it If I tack the balloons to the backstop there should be no issues from anybody at the range. Thanks, Keystonepaul
that's awesome Paul! See if you can find some claybirds for him to shoot. Anything that involves breaking and destruction kids love. We set up claybirds for the kids at camp to shoot with a 22, they can't get enough!!
My son and I played tic-tac-toe at 25 yards. He sot a .22 long rifle and I shot my .22 pistol. He still remembers that and it was 35 years ago. Make a game of it and they will respond. Keep it safe.

I have a grandson that is turning 7 in July and I can't wait to get him out! Although his little sister shows more interest, I think he will be fine. Remember ear protection too, especially on those young eardrums.
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Those are great ideas as well, thanks folks. Bobby2bears he indeed had his big ear protectors on from start to finish as did Dad. Good reminder for us all for sure. Thanks, Keystonepaul
Sounds like you're doing it good, friend.
I have been through this over the last three years with my son who now has used it to successfully take his first buck this year at age 9. I'll be doing it again with my daughter in the spring.
My suggestions echo some of what has been said already. Reactive targets get them really psyched about their hits. I use clay birds hanging from tacks on the backer board. Targets start at about 25 yds with open sights so they learn what the sight picture is all about, but the scope is fine...they'll learn both ways eventually...moving out to 50 yds once they start hitting pretty regularly.
The biggest obstacle at this age...steady trigger pull. They want to see what they hit right away, so they jerk the trigger and look over the gun immediately. I always remind them to watch the target break through the sights (or the scope), and that nothing moves except the trigger finger.
Good luck to you guys. The more you take him, the more he'll improve.

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