How Early to Start a Kid Shooting? [Archive] - Glock Talk

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puckhead
05-14-2012, 11:43
The step kid will be 5 soon. What age did you guys start your kids with shooting?

He know the difference between toys and real ones right now and we try and talk about things when we can.

The dad sees him every now and then and he doesn't know what hun safety is. Loaded guns around the house, etc. So we would like to teach him before he gets taught wrong. Thanks guys!

ithaca_deerslayer
05-14-2012, 11:50
The step kid will be 5 soon. What age did you guys start your kids with shooting?

He know the difference between toys and real ones right now and we try and talk about things when we can.

The dad sees him every now and then and he doesn't know what hun safety is. Loaded guns around the house, etc. So we would like to teach him before he gets taught wrong. Thanks guys!

My son is 6.

You saying your step kid's dad leaves loaded guns around the house?

I guess the first lesson to learn is "Assume all guns are always loaded". Followed by don't point at anyone, and keep your finger off the trigger.

With my son, since age 3, he's been allowed to handle different kinds of guns, as long as me or my wife is there. Any time he wants, he just has to ask. And we explain about the guns, how they work, what they shoot, what they might be used for. Stuff like that.

And over and over again the basic safety rules.

As for actually shooting, age 5 is about when he started on the BB guns, but not unsupervised. Always with eye protection. And I explain why the eye protection and how bullets and BBs can bounce back at your face.

I'm thinking about maybe letting him shoot a .22 this Summer. He hasn't been asking, so no rush. But if time and maturity seem right, we will progress to that.

phalanxr
05-14-2012, 11:51
I am not a parent so just personal experience here.

I shot my first gun at 3, and my first ground hog at 3 in Penn.

They held the rifle steady for me (Ruger), I looked through the scope and was told to put the cross on its head and pull back the trigger. Dead Ground hog.

Been addicted to guns ever since.



-Phal

Bilbo Bagins
05-14-2012, 12:06
It really depends on the kid. Some kids are really unsafe and don't listen well, while some are very focused.

My oldest daughter actually started later then my youngest daughter. My oldest has a touch of ADD and was a little too into guns, so I waited. My youngest wanted to shoot but she had a respectful fear of firearms, so she learned younger.

I have one male cousin that was taught how to shoot when he was 6. He is 14 now and plans to join the Marines. However I have two nephews (12 and 10) that I will NEVER take to the range until they stop acting like morons. Those kids were unsafe with airsoft guns, yet their father is insisting the WE take them. :upeyes:

Baba Louie
05-14-2012, 12:36
Age 4 or 5 for safety rules and helping clean guns, general discussions on hunting, safety, sport shooting, safety, etc. If kid can handle that level of responsibility, move on to a parental controlled BB gun for some backyard shooting challenge.

Something I learned from Boy Scout Leadership training... at that age you have approx 1 minute of attention span per year of age. So a 5 year old has about 5 minutes before his/her attention begins to wonder. Keep that thought in mind when dealing with young people. (but don't treat them like kids unless they act like it... which they will)

When my son was 6 or 7 and we were out in the desert plinking w/ my M1 carbine one day, he saw a jack rabbit and asked me to shoot it. We talked about it for a bit. "Why shoot it? To eat it? I only kill if I eat the things I shoot and I'm not planning to eat jack rabbit. I wanna see what your rife can do. It can kill a jack, trust me. Show me. Please."

Lesson time? Bang. Dead rabbit w/ entrails strewn about a bit. We walked up the 30 yds or so to view results. He puked.

"That's what rifles and handguns can do. Serious stuff. You understand?" Head nod. Maybe a tear.

Lesson learned. He never did like hunting after that for some reason. Sad. But he is very safe around guns and a fair shot as a 29 year old.

SEARTraining
05-14-2012, 12:38
My dad stared me shooting a BB Gun at the age of 4. By 5 a single break pellet rifle. By 6 a Ruger 10.22 .22LR. I still shoot that same rifle today. At about 10 a Browning "Sweet" 16 gauge shotgun. At 14 I shot trap with my dad with a Browning 20 gauge and he taught me how to shoot a S&W 39-2 9mm handgun. At 16 a Browning 12 gauge dove hunting. The best memories I have of my dad are of him teaching me how to shoot, track, hunt, camp, and respect the outdoors and firearms. He passed last Christmas.

Teach safety and respect with love and patients. You can develop the best times and memories parents and children can create. Good luck.

WoodenPlank
05-14-2012, 12:54
I started shooting at the age of 5. A friend of mine started his son around the same age, and 5 years later his son is making hits on 12" steel at 500 yards with a .308 Remington 700.

bac1023
05-14-2012, 13:12
It really depends on the kid. Some kids are really unsafe and don't listen well, while some are very focused.



:agree:

I don't think the same age applies to every child when it comes to being responsible enough to handle a firearm safely. I'm not a parent, but it makes sense.

Patchman
05-14-2012, 15:24
I started with a .177 cal pellet gun when I was 6 or 7. And yes, once I did lose my privileges with that pellet gun for one whole month. But that drove home the lesson.

My kids started with .22s at about 10 years old.

travis34769
05-14-2012, 17:13
Mine got his first gun at eight months old.... A crickett .22 lr in blue. :-)

puckhead
05-15-2012, 08:15
Thanks for the great info guys! Really makes you think about things a bit. He already knows the difference between a real gun and a toy and will come tell me or mom if there is a gun around. Even if he happens to see mine if my shirt gets lifted up he asks why it isnt in the safe. I think we have a good start so far. Just need to to keep working on the rules!

As for the dad having guns laying around, he did when they lived together, don't know about know . I just dont want him to teach the kid the wrong things.

Steve in Az
05-15-2012, 09:46
You can tell when your kid is focused or distracted easily. My first grand son started at 7, but he was focused and paid attention, we waited on his little brother until he was 10, because he was too easily distracted. Distraction and firearms don't mix. You'll know when the time is right.

glockaviator
05-15-2012, 10:12
The answer is "when he is ready". He is ready when he wants to and is able. How would we know? Seems to me the boys mother and you should be asking/evaluating the boy.

I always treated my children like they could do MORE than they have demonstrated. There is a good reason for this attitude. Because they CAN.

There is no set age.

ithaca_deerslayer
05-15-2012, 10:16
The answer is "when he is ready". He is ready when he wants to and is able. How would we know? Seems to me the boys mother and you should be asking/evaluating the boy.

I always treated my children like they could do MORE than they have demonstrated. There is a good reason for this attitude. Because they CAN.

There is no set age.

How would we know? Because humans are similar.

If you tell me your kid can count to 100 at age 5, I'll wonder if my kid can.

But if nobody's kid can count to 100 until they are 18, then I won't expect my 5 year old to do it.

Just serves as a vague reference point to know what other parents have seen with their kids. Something like that :)

Just_plinking
05-15-2012, 11:30
I always wanted/asked for guns as a kid. I got a bb/pellet rifle when I was probably 8 or so. My parents gave me a .22 for Christmas when I was 10 (I think). It was one of those "A Christmas Story" scenarios where they implied I might have to wait 'till I was older.

Anyhow, I got one, and the way they went about it impressed upon me the responsibility of treating guns with safety. They let me keep it in my room, and I never thought about putting rounds in it w/o explicit permission.

I wouldn't argue against other opinions, but I think I would wait 'till I was sure that the kid really understood the seriousness of the responsibility associated with guns before I introduced them to shooting an actual gun.

On the other hand, we lived in the suburbs, and my Dad had guns, but shooting/hunting wasn't a hobby for him. If you go out and shoot a lot, I can see the need to start earlier so that you don't have to wait to share your hobby with your kid.

plouffedaddy
05-15-2012, 12:03
No crumb crunchers of my own yet but my nephew is 6 and there's no guns in his house (father is a felon) but his mother wanted him to learn about guns, gun safety, respecting firearms, ect... I've taken him out shooting 22s and he loves it. I have to temper his excitement to keep him from doing unsafe things (like finger in the trigger guard, ect...). He just loves guns and is a pretty decent shot too (must be the young eyes).

Nestor
05-15-2012, 13:32
First let me thank You for doing the right thing. Sorry to hear about his father. It seems like You may become his role model soon instead. Good luck. My daughter was very interested in the guns in general and we talked about them since she was 7 years old. I explained how they work, why are we using them, why do I carry one at work and all the safety rules as well. She's very small for her age, so I decided to wait till this year with her introduction to our favorite sport. Last year we started with some basic archery though. She's 9 now and still having a hard time to keep her .177 pellet lever action from Daisy on target. However she had a blast during her first shooting session (right behind our, new house). We are already planning for the next time. What a good time it was! Those memories will last a lifetime...just make sure to take the camera with You.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v295/Admon/IMG_3529.jpg
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v295/Admon/IMG_3531.jpg
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v295/Admon/IMG_3535.jpg

MadMonkey
05-15-2012, 13:56
My dad started me on a BB gun when I was about 4... progressed to a Browning Takedown .22 when I was a little older. I still own it today (I'm the 3rd generation owner). Still shoots like it was new :supergrin:

My older brother is more of a hunter type while I prefer competition/combat style shooting, but we mix it up and are both pretty decent. My sisters never really got into shooting, but all four of us took the Hunter's Safety Course (I was too young but took the test just for fun and got the highest score in the class :rofl:).

If I have kids one day, they'll be exposed to firearms at a very early age and safety training will start when they're old enough to understand.

ithaca_deerslayer
05-15-2012, 13:58
Nestor, how does she do while sitting at a bench?

With my 6 yr old son, having him stand to shoot is asking too much. But when sitting down, and resting the gun steady at a bench, then he gets to learn how to align the iron sights up, and work on his trigger pull. And good accuracy.

And of course the trigger on his Daisy is crap, and the ergonomics of trying to reach it with the lever in the way, is crap. But he at least is learning how to use the sights, without having to worry about the gun bouncing around.

Just a thought :)

Nestor
05-15-2012, 14:11
Nestor, how does she do while sitting at a bench?

With my 6 yr old son, having him stand to shoot is asking too much. But when sitting down, and resting the gun steady at a bench, then he gets to learn how to align the iron sights up, and work on his trigger pull. And good accuracy.

And of course the trigger on his Daisy is crap, and the ergonomics of trying to reach it with the lever in the way, is crap. But he at least is learning how to use the sights, without having to worry about the gun bouncing around.

Just a thought :)

Thanks! I may try that. I was providing some support up front by keeping the barrel on target while she's was working the sights, but bench is much better idea indeed.
I agree - trigger is awful, but she's doing fine so far :wavey:

Nestor
05-15-2012, 14:13
My dad started me on a BB gun when I was about 4... progressed to a Browning Takedown .22 when I was a little older. I still own it today (I'm the 3rd generation owner). Still shoots like it was new :supergrin:

My older brother is more of a hunter type while I prefer competition/combat style shooting, but we mix it up and are both pretty decent. My sisters never really got into shooting, but all four of us took the Hunter's Safety Course (I was too young but took the test just for fun and got the highest score in the class :rofl:).

If I have kids one day, they'll be exposed to firearms at a very early age and safety training will start when they're old enough to understand.

Thanks for your service!

ithaca_deerslayer
05-15-2012, 14:16
Thanks! I may try that. I was providing some support up front by keeping the barrel on target while she's was working the sights, but bench is much better idea indeed.
I agree - trigger is awful, but she's doing fine so far :wavey:

Of course you've got to sneak the gun out on your own sometime to verify the sights are on to point of aim. That's the fun part, benchresting your own kid's BB/pellet gun :rofl:

I did that when he wasn't around, otherwise might seem like the focus was too much on me, and my shooting.

4TS&W
05-15-2012, 14:23
There is no age! You should not shoot kids! (well, unless they have it coming... lol)

Yes I am goofing on yur thread title.

I started mine at 5 with bbs, paintballs, airsoft. Limited .22 with heavy emphasis on the safety rules.

Steve in Az
05-15-2012, 14:47
I started my grand sons from a bench so they could concentrate on sight alignment, instead of struggling (LOL) with the weight of the .22 rifle. It worked out really well, as I taught them iron-sighted shooting first, then graduated them to a scope mounted .22. They love that, and shoot really quite well. I'm really surprised that Emmy (my grand daughter) hasn't shown an interest---she's usually way less of a chicken than the 2 knuckleheads.

(They actually began with daisy red riders, but quickly got bored with those).

Nestor, looks like you got a shootin' buddy---good for you, man.

Creatism
05-15-2012, 14:59
I started mine at 4-5 with the 4 basic rules and cleaning/handling them with my supervision. Now he's 8 and we just went to the range for his birthday and shot 22s, he had a blast, shot placement was horrible but he's 8!
Aside from some mess ups it was pretty good trip! Now we are going to work on site alignment and trigger pull before the next trip!


Typed from my iPhone.

JordanK
05-15-2012, 15:17
My dad started me off pretty young. Thinking back... I think it was the perfect age for me. I was just old enough to understand the gravity of firearm usage and ownership. Gave me a 10/22 around my tenth birthday I think and a Mark II a couple years later. My Dad's Blackhawk (we are a bit of a ruger family... can you tell? :p) filled in the gaps. Gun that heavy made 9mm manageable for a kid, and I sort of worked my way up to full bore .357. My friends and I spent many a summer day walking around the desert popping jackrabbits and coyotes (not for food... terrible, I know, but there isn't exactly a shortage of either in the El Paso area so I can't muster too many regrets on the topic) in our teen years completely unsupervised. My Dad's philosophy was pretty simple... you can't shoot a gun till you can take it apart, and one safety screw up means no more guns... in the house... ever. That was the deal. I believe to this day that, had I screwed around and been caught, every last gun my family owned would have had a consignment sticker on it by the end of the day. :D

If my personal experience is any example... you might wait a few years yet. Then again, if the kid is exposed to firearms elsewhere... well, it's definitely never too early to start on gun safety. My niece is one and I talk to her exhaustively on the subject. Of course, those conversations are pretty one sided and likely to end with me getting a spoonful of baby food to the face... so, I'm obviously no expert :p.

Veedubklown
05-15-2012, 15:58
My buddy just started his 6 year old off with a spring-powered airsoft pistol. Not enough FPS to actually kill anything if he shot it, but enough to be fun, and teach fundamentals of safety. Figured it's a good place to test the waters.

adamg01
05-15-2012, 16:06
I was shooting squirrels out of trees with a scoped Marlin .22 when I was six. I think five years is a good age or maybe even a little younger.

vafish
05-15-2012, 16:26
Air rifles and .22's about 5. Handguns about 8.

Worked good for my 4.

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17119jfkioe
05-15-2012, 16:30
fresh out the womb

ithaca_deerslayer
05-15-2012, 16:43
I was shooting squirrels out of trees with a scoped Marlin .22 when I was six. I think five years is a good age or maybe even a little younger.

Up above the horizon?

rilkil23
05-15-2012, 18:14
Began with a cheap bb rifle and then a co2 pistol. Once we had a grasp on those I went to one round at a time in my Ruger Sr9. After some time with the 9mm it was time to shoot a lot with the 22/45 and 10-22 rifle. I wanted my boys to understand that the big boy guns were no different from smaller calibers. Both my kids do great and have learned all the necessary skills for me to feel comfortable having guns/rifles in my home.

WorrGlock
05-15-2012, 19:17
I started mine when he was 5 I let him pull the trigger on my MKII while I held it, over the years I taught SAFETY SAFETY SAFETY I would take him on Woods walks and let him carry his .410 (unloaded) he thought we were hunting.

He is now 15 and a damn fine shot, and also safer around firearms than most adults I have known

WoodenPlank
05-15-2012, 19:21
I started mine when he was 5 I let him pull the trigger on my MKII while I held it, over the years I taught SAFETY SAFETY SAFETY I would take him on Woods walks and let him carry his .410 (unloaded) he thought we were hunting.

He is now 15 and a damn fine shot, and also safer around firearms than most adults I have known

Instilling safety from an early age is critical to raising kids in a house with firearms.

hogship
05-15-2012, 19:32
I have one son that started shooting 22 at age 4, and another that was about 7 or 8 before he started shooting. The number of years mean nothing......level of maturity is everything.

Anybody remember when this subject came up at another time, and some dingbat came on here and accused me of child abuse for allowing a 4 year old to shoot? Some people think they know more about your kids than you do........we have too many "know it alls" in this world.........

ooc

CBennett
05-15-2012, 20:37
The step kid will be 5 soon. What age did you guys start your kids with shooting?

He know the difference between toys and real ones right now and we try and talk about things when we can.

The dad sees him every now and then and he doesn't know what hun safety is. Loaded guns around the house, etc. So we would like to teach him before he gets taught wrong. Thanks guys!

same age as yours(5) I got him a Cricket single shot and now he has a Savage bolt action with a accutrigger. When he takes his time he's quite a good shot :supergrin:


now he is 12 and he shoots .38 special out of the Dan Wesson 15-2 well and the ak74 ok also.

the S&W22a he considers "his"...always says..be sure to bring "my" pistol lol