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BB gun at around 6, carrying and shooting dad's semi-auto JC Higgins rifle without adult supervision at around 7, first "very own" .22 bolt action at 10, first center fire rifle at 11., a Winchester '94 .30-30.
 
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Safety and fun are the most important things at that age. Short attention span so reactive targets are best. My grandson shot my 22 pistol at age 4 with my help of course. You and your boy have a great time. :s0155:
 
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bb gun at 6 or 7. I thought my nephew was ready as I raised him from 1 year old and he seemed like you said that he would not do anything dumb. Took the gun away for a couple years within 3 minutes of the 4 year old handling it and being way to excited and not having the mental ability to be calm or not swing the gun all around, pull the trigger way before given the command and the list goes on...remember this was in under 3 minutes and he now is 16 and a very good skilled responsible shooter but he waited until 6 after that.
 
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I got to start shooting BB guns at 5. Got my very own first BB gun when I was 8 or 9 - and I got to roam the orchard and fields around the house with it, shooting gophers, mice, moles, starlings, and tin cans. It was good times. I started rifle shooting with real firearms much later - when I was in my teens. My older brother was more into shooting and guns at that point - my old man owned a number of guns but showed zero interest in shooting with me, until I was in my 20s.

In my previous marriage, I started teaching my step daughter to shoot when she was 5, with a Marlin bolt action .22 single shot. She handled it very well and took to it very naturally. Not sure if her new step father continued teaching her or not - as her mom & I split when she was 8.

Now I have a 2 year old son who loves seeing Daddy's guns and has a couple toy guns he plays with a lot (little orange space-blaster thing and a nerf dart gun). I figure when he's about 5, he can start learning to shoot real guns with a .22.
 
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Cub scouts start shooting bb guns at day camp at age 7 or 8. They typically have 15+ minutes of safety training and 15-40 minutes of shooting with 4 adults per 8-12 boys. That is a mainstream, no one has an issue with it, exposure to firearms (similar for archery) that people are used to. Boy Scouts do .22 at age 12 and shotguns at age 14.

I think that 1-on-1 you can go younger, my brother in law is teaching my 3 year old nephew how to hold an empty AR-15. Their feeling is that if they have a gun in the house not to make it an exciting taboo item.
 
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As soon as they can hold up a bb gun and cock it by themselves they are old enough to play around with one. Supervised I think 3 is a fine age to start. When we went to family farms I would go and hunt bugs with my bb gun at age 4-5. Played with cap guns from at age 2.
 
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BB gun at 10.. BB gun war within 2 weeks with neighbor kid. after shooting each other once.. we decided BB gun war was no fun at all. unsupervised h.e.l.l.i.o.n.s. with BB guns, not a good combination. had the daisy lever action, that if you cocked it and left the handle forward and pulled the trigger the lever would slam down on your fingers,,, ouch…single shot shotgun at age 13. got alot of birds with it for dinner.
 
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Thank you all for the input. I figured I'd start him on a BB gun and when he started to show good control I would move him up to a .22. Parallax you talking about the lever action BB guns slamming your fingers if you didn't close the lever brought back some memories lol. I did that plenty of times when I was younger
 
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I was about 10? We (My Grandfather and younger sister) shot .22 revolvers down on our ranch.
After that I knew firearms were meant to be a part of my life.

I think at 10 young boys and girls should have enough coordination and strength to actually enjoy going out and shooting.

Just make sure you don't let their minds get corrupted by these video games. I can't tell you how many kids and teens think their little tactical operators who know about optics and weapon platforms. Not to mention if in the game they call it a "clip" the kids repeat that and assume thats the proper terminology for a MAGAZINE.

However once they feel for the very first time what real recoil feels like and the disappointment when they pop off that first shot and it doesn't hit the bullseye because you actually have to dial in your optics or irons and adjust for windage they usually come back to reality.
 
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I shot a .38 when I was around 5 or 6, didn't get my own .22 till I was 12 though (that was around 55 years ago).


Deen
NRA Life Member, Benefactor Level
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"A gun is like a parachute. If you need one and don't have it, you'll probably never need one again!"
 
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My son was 6 when he got his BB gun and 12 when I got him the Ruger 10/22, his cousin got his first .22 when he turned 12 just 3 months later. You are the parent, you are the best judge of whether he should or shouldn't be handling a firearm. Don't hesitate to suspend the privilege for a while if you don't see him taking it seriously, or if he just isn't ready when you introduce him to the wonderful world of target shooting.
 
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I started shooting at age six. My dad plonked me down on the beach, facing the sea, sat behind me and put his 1914 USS Navy issue Colt M1911 in my hands, wrapped his around them, and let me crank out those nice big 240gr FMJs into the ocean.

Same week, I moved onto his Walther Model 2 [semi-auto/bolt action] with single shots. By the end of the summer I was shooting it as a semi with its five-shot magazine. That was sixty-one years ago.

Here in yUK youngsters as young as seven/eight are being introduced to 'real' shooting in our club. If they are big enough to reliably hold a little CZ .22 or any of my small-sized .22s, they are good to go - with close supervision, of course.

tac
 
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Hi All,
My Dad took me out at 4 years and I shot a .22. At 5 years I shot my Dad's 12 ga. I was given a .22. I stated cleaning them on the return frpm shooting that day. At 6 years I was cleaning all the guns myself. BB gun at 10 years I bought it.

Tony Portland, Oregon area
 
I posted a video in the hunting section of us taking our almost 4 year old grandson out "hunting" deer targets. The only time he holds the bb gun is when I'm there to supervise. He will get one of his own soon, with a shortened stock, but it will stay with me. We'll spend the next year learning the proper skills and maybe next year he'll get a .22.

I first shot a 22 rifle about 6. The handgun, a year or two later. Both of these with Dad's direct supervision. I have those guns and will pass them down.
 

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