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For Parents of Child Actors: How to Help Your Actor Succeed!

Parents of child actors or teen actors have a lot of things they can do to help their young star succeed. These days, young athletes and artists alike face challenges of time and stress management. Parents of young achievers often find themselves walking fine lines between parent and teacher, cheerleader and coach. Remember, your child – and casting directors — are watching you. Keep those lines straight and help your child actor succeed and pursue their dreams with these six simple tips!

1. Be Organized!
Every minute you spend pre-packing nutritious snacks, mapping routes to auditions, checking on parking and keeping your child actor’s resume and casting site profiles current pays off. And the stress it spares your family will make all the difference in your child’s auditions, bookings and performances.

2. Be Early!
Set alarms for yourself. Set your watch 10 minutes fast. Use whatever strategy you need to be at least a few minutes early. And not just for auditions. Exercising the discipline to be punctual now will help your youngster adopt the habit, too. Being a little early provides a cushion for unexpected delays and minimizes stress. As a bonus, everyone in casting or on production will notice and see you and your child as reliable members of the team.

3. Be rested!
Everything is easier when you’re rested, hydrated, and fed. Children especially need rest (and leisure time!) to be at their best. Sleep and sufficient relaxation are vital for keeping kids happy and healthy – both major traits every casting director looks for, especially for commercials!

4. Be stocked!
Moms are famous for their well-stocked mom-bags and purses. Child actors have the same needs and more in terms of supplies. In addition to appropriate snacks and water, make sure you’re equipped to adjust hair, clean spots or spills, and entertain your young professional as needed with a well-stocked “bag of tricks.” Keep it in the car so it’s always at the ready! 

5. Be a parent, first and always.
Even professionals hesitate to coach their own children. What teens and children look for and need from an acting class or coach is different from what they need from a parent. While actors sometimes need coaching, young actors always need parents. Of course you want to help! Resist the temptation to overly direct your youngster’s performance by finding great acting classes for kids and teens  like the ones we offer here at 3-2-1- Acting School in Los Angeles or try individual coaching.

5. Be an advocate!
Protecting your children has been your number one priority since they were born. That doesn’t change when your young star decides to pursue acting and works on professional sets. Though there are many regulations and best practices aimed at protecting minor performers, you are still your child’s best line of physical and emotional defense. Teach your youngster courtesy and self-respect by example, and do your best to listen. If acting is your child’s true passion, it will be life-long, and any break from it to pursue other interests or activities will only expand their resume and develops their salable skills.

6. Be playful!
Parenting and growing up are adventures unto themselves. You may be balancing your own full-time work week in addition to your child’s burgeoning career. To be a partner in your child’s acting pursuits can bring you closer than you ever imagined it could, especially if you stick to these simple tips. Build time in your week for relaxation and play. Stay positive and have fun, and your young actor will, too!

Speaking of being playful, here are some helpful, fun and funny tongue twisters. Actors find tongue twisters all the time in their scripts, especially in television commercials. Try them out with your child actor and crack each other up as you find your favorites. Keep them in mind for handy vocal warm-ups, enunciation practice, and stress relief in the car going to and from auditions.

Rubber baby buggy bumper.
Toy boat. Toy boat. Toy boat.
Unique New York.
Are our oars oak?
Chop shops stock chops.
Flash message!
She stood on the balcony inexplicably mimicking him hiccuping, and amicably welcoming him home.
She was a thistle sifter and sifted thistles through a thistle sieve.
A big bug bit a bold bald bear and the bold bald bear bled blood badly.
Brisk brave brigadiers brandished broad bright blades, blunderbusses, and bludgeons — Balancing them badly.
Can you can a canned can into an uncanned can like a canner can can a canned can into an uncanned can?
If you must cross a course cross cow across a crowded cow crossing, cross the cross coarse cow across the crowded cow crossing carefully.
Imagine an imaginary menagerie manager managing an imaginary menagerie.
The sixth sick sheik’s sixth sheep’s sick.  (This is the World’s Hardest Tongue Twister, according the Guiness Book of World Records.)
Pad kid poured curd pulled cod. (This is the toughest Tongue Twister according to MIT)
Are our oars oak?
Around the rugged rocks the ragged rascal ran.
Cows graze in groves on grass which grows in grooves in groves.
Give me the gift of a griptop sock: a drip-drape, ship-shape, tip-top sock.
If Stu chews shoes, should Stu choose the shoes he chews?
Lesser leather never weathered wetter weather better.
Lily ladles little Letty’s lentil soup.
Lovely lemon liniment.
Many an anemone sees an enemy anemone.
Red leather, yellow leather.
Red lorry, yellow lorry.

Which tongue twister is your favorite? Or make up your own. Just keep up the good work and come by and take a Free Acting Class at 3-2-1- Acting Studios!

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