Here’s a short and simple story told with cards.
There are plenty of story card tricks exhibited and explained on YouTube. This card story is not complicated and, in fact, it is NOT a card trick, and it will not tax your dexterity with cards. You can embellish, even alter, the story however you like – just as long as you retain the card sequence and follow the method and order of presenting the cards.
Your demonstration, once you have mastered the sequence and the cover story, is guaranteed to intrigue, fascinate and impress a child – many adults too!. It was first demonstrated to me by my father when I was very young, and I was quite baffled – still am. The mathematics involved in compiling the card sequence, if mathematics is involved at all, is beyond me. The preparation just requires getting the sequence of the cards correct before the ‘story’ unfolds.
LEARNING to SPELL NUMBERS … A STORY with PLAYING CARDS
Prior to telling the story, take a single suit ( or an ordered set) of 13 cards from a standard pack of playing cards, and arrange them in the following order – face up from the bottom:
3 … 8 … 7 … A … Q … 6 … 4 … 2 … J … K … 10 … 9 … 5
Then turn this set of 13 cards face down and tell the following story (or invent your own and embellish as much as you wish) – showing the cards in order as the story unfolds. As each card number is called place it face up on top of the previous card.
“In the year 3 8 7 one (ACE) old (well!… she doesn’t have to be old! How about ‘posh’?) lady (QUEEN), aged 6 4, had 2 sons, one called JACK and the other called KING, aged 10 and 9. She sent them to school for 5 years to learn how to spell.”
Having told this story, then take these cards, turn the pack over so that they are now face down, and proceed to spell, turning over one card at a time, saying “O-N-E-ONE” (The 4th card will be the ONE) / “T-W-O-TWO” (the 8th card will be the TWO, etc.) up to “T-E-N-10″ / J-A-C-K-JACK” / “Q-U-E-E-N-QUEEN” / “K-I-N-G-KING”, putting each named card face up in a separate pile as its name has been spelt out. Carry on the spelling with the remaining cards only, turning these over each time you reach the end of the ever-reducing pile of cards.
When done correctly, all the numbers from Ace to King will appear in order.