Started my (step) daughter at 5. Now that her half-sister is living with us as a foster child, I've started with her too. She turned 6 back in Oct., about a month before the events happened that placed her with us...
My Dad started teaching me about 3 repeating the safety rules over and over I started learning how to shoot BB guns shortly thereafter. I have now had a gun in my hands for 23 years. I started teaching my youngest brother when he was about5 repeating the rules like I was first taught. Then I got him a Daisy Red Ryder BB gun to practice and learn on. He is now 14 and still shoots that BB gun more than any other.
My kids are only 1 and 2 years old now so I'll wait a little longer before I teach them probably around 5 or 6 years old.
On that note one thing that I do not want in my house are "toy guns" they teach bad habits faster than you can teach them good ones. IMHO
I think it basically depends on the kid. Are they interested? Do they have an attention span of more than 2 minutes? Do they listen to what you say, and do what you tell them? Do they get good grades in school? I guess talking to them about gun safety and actually teaching them to shoot have different considerations. You're naturally going to start talking to them about gun safety first, and I think that should start as soon as possible if you have firearms in your home. So I guess that was the long way of saying as young as possible based on each individuals attitude, behavior, and ability to learn. When my daughters were young they had no interest at all firearms. I did a show and tell of my guns and they knew that they weren't to be touched and why.
My guess is as soon as they start asking questions about them, and show an interest in touching one. I don't think you can really pinpoint any age as kids develop mentally differently. Basically, as soon as you think they may have the desire , ( curiosity), to touch a real one. Remember, kids have big curiosities, and tend to mess with things when you're back may be turned. I start the moment they start asking real gun questions. Tell them like it is as many times as you can, until you are blue in the face. You can't really start too early to plant the first seed of caution and respect. They will comprehend it only as soon as it will be absorbed anyway. You have nothing to loose by throwing it out there at the earliest age that it can be mentally recorded. If they're showing an interest, haul butt ! That is my take.
Anytime they show an interest is my take on it. From the sound of it, they're already 10+ years old if they're playing games with "killing and such". That's way past time someone taught them. That being said, make sure the parents are ok with it first.
I started as soon as they could crawl. Started just talking to them about gun safety and made a habit of talking to them about it. By the time they could walk, they knew NOT to touch a gun,(not that I had them lying around). By the time they could walk I took them shooting. I took away their curiosity about guns. They new once a mistake was made, that it could not be undone. Today my daughter is 15 and my son is almost 13, if it was legal I would allow them to carry, they are that conscientious about guns and what can happen. So I say talk to the kids before they understand and create a habit about talking gun safety with your kid. JMO.
5 is probably around about the age I'd start doing serious instruction so I think you'd be all right on all of them. The 12 year old needs it at that age before he gets too caught up in the video game/movie world.
uh. My dad started with me when I was about 5-6. One thing I remember is that he didn't make it a requirement to talk about guns and gun safety all the time. So when we did talk about guns the conversation was fun for me and I paid better attention.
But I won't be talking to my kids about guns fo a while.. I'm only 14, . Got a while till I have to worry bout that.
My two oldest children were out in the woods hunting with me when they where 5 years old. They are now 28 and 24. My son carried a toy pistol in a holster or a little rifle everytime we went squirrel hunting together. They have been shooting since they were 6 years old with me at the range or out in the woods. My youngest daughter just turned 14 and she shoots Trap and she shoots 22's all of the time.... I think it is very important that we teach every little girl that we can to shoot and to handle all firearms safely so they don't grow up to be Anti-Gun Mothers.
greeting all. i was introduced to firearms about the time i was 9. that's when we were shooting the daisy bb gun days. so thought that would be a good time to
teach my two boys. (aged 14/16) we've had plenty of trips to the woods for
target practice and we take a couple shotguns and a couple handguns plus
plenty of ammo. was nice to see that they enjoyed spending time in the great outdoors and the quailty time together that goes with it.
Mine started when they were very young.
Even the girls, had their own gun racks in their rooms. (yep blonds too)
What I find hilarious.
Is my younger daughter, married a city boy.
Not only taught him how to shoot, but also their boys!
Now, they ALL enjoy shooting together as a family.
My SIL and my daughter werre down at my SIL's dad's house in North Carolina. (his dad is a State Trooper) My SIL and his dad were shooting his service pistol in the back yard. They asked my daughter if she wanted to take a shot. My SIL said he was shocked when she took it and just started banging away with it. He said she hit all of the cans they had set up. He said since she was a girl that he didn't think she had ever held a gun before.
__________________ USAF SSgt 80-86 IN GOD WE TRUST NRA MEMBER
When the kids were 3 and 5 years old, I disabled an old pellet pistol, and began to leave it laying around the house. Eventually they found it, asked a few questions, and we had about a 2 minute discussion. As time went on (a month or so) the questions became more in-depth, and more frequent, and the conversations lasted a bit longer. Finally we took a trip to the range, and the kids watched from the truck as I destroyed a couple of shaken up pop cans with a .22...... once they were completely in awe of the destructive power of that little bullet, They were safely hooked. Eventually, one became totally engrossed with what could he take to the range and destroy, and the younger one wanted to shoot little tiny targets at a distance.
As a grandfather, I'll offer this advice......
Involve them completely in the safety, education, enjoyment, and utilization of firearms, as soon as they exhibit some interest. If you forbid them access, and make firearms a mystery, you'll plant the seeds for a tragedy, as they may very likely find a way to access a firearm.... if not yours, then perhaps someone elses.