Four Christmas Gifts For Kids That Don’t Involve Video Games

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More and more these days kids seem to be wanting video game systems for Christmas and if it’s not the video game systems then it is one of the many accessories or games that go with them. By the time we are done buying the system, the games, and everything else there is little room for more traditional gifts, those gifts that expand a child’s mind, that teach them important social skills, and that will help them learn about the importance of fair competition. We don’t want our children’s childhood to be all about sitting in front of a video game though so we need to give them gifts that will inspire them to do more than pick up a controller and live in a world that is all fantasy. Not only is it not healthy to be so inactive but it is not healthy to have such limited experience. Limited experience leads to limited point of view and ultimately limited opportunity, two things that we do not want to bestow on our children. We as parents have the responsibility of showing our children that there are other things out there for them to enjoy if they just take the time to discover what those things are. We can start by giving them creative Christmas gifts that will have them doing something besides pushing buttons and sitting in front of a television or computer monitor all day. Listed are four classic Christmas gifts that have nothing to do with video games and everything to do with important lessons and learning experiences.

Board Games – Board games are a great way to teach children about the value of a good, fair competition but many parents these days just assume that kids will not play board games because they have video games so they don’t buy them for them. The fact is if we do buy them and then actually play them with our children they will probably find that they enjoy the friendly competition and the time spent with the family.

Science Projects – Simple, safe science projects that can be found at most toy stores are a great way to expand your child’s mind. Such projects as volcanoes, home made tornadoes, and chemistry sets are a great way to instill a sense of wonder in your kids and they will have a great time completing the projects and so will you.

Models – Model cars, boats, airplanes, and motorcycles are another great way to expand your child’s mind. And the best part about these as that they will have a great new decoration for their room as well and they can show off their modeling skills at the same time.

Art Sets – Art sets will give your child what they need to explore their creative side before they get to the age where they just assume that they have no artistic talent. Whether it is painting supplies, drawing supplies, or anything else it will be a great way to get your child thinking about more than their video game system.

This year give your child the gift of creativity and important life lessons by giving them something besides video games and you will surely be glad that you did.

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A Look at Artificial Intelligence and Technology – Book Review

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It is fairly obvious that computers and artificial intelligence will run our world tomorrow, as we program these machines today. Interestingly enough, not long from now these AI machines will be programming themselves. How did we come so far so fast you ask? Well, maybe you need to do a little research for yourself.

If this topic interests you, then boy do I have a great book for you to read. It is a book that I own personally, and one I read a long time ago, but it still holds validity today, and many of the predictions of that past period, which is only two decades ago, although it seems like eons; the book is:

“The Connection Machine,” by W. Danny Hillis, MIT Press, MA, 1989, (208 pp), ISBN: 978-026258-0977.

This book is an extension of a highly controversial and ahead of its time MIT thesis by the same author. This book is not for the non-intellectual, and he gets pretty thick into the details and philosophy of parallel computing. This book was written well before massive Internet use, just as the computer technology in Silicon Valley was really taking off. Indeed, this is one of those books which was the prime mover of the time.

This is why I have it in my library, and why I recommend it to anyone who is into artificial intelligence, computer hardware, future software, or where we are go from here; why you ask – because if the past is any indication of the future, things are getting get pretty interesting in the next decade. In fact, I hope you will please consider this, and educate yourself a little in the past, so you can understand how far we’ve come, how fast we’ve come, and where we go from here. Think on it.

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Summer Infant Best View Color Video Baby Monitor Review

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The Summer Infant Best View color video baby monitor is one of the highest rated video monitors you can buy to help you keep an eye on your child. It is loaded with features that put it a cut above the rest. The camera pans and zooms, the 2.5″ screen size is easy to see, and it provides reliable performance.

The digital technology used in this monitor ensures that the image of your baby won’t be transmitted beyond your home. With night vision technology, you can see your baby even in the dark and the one-touch on/off button lets you take a quick look for reassurance at any time.

Summer Infant Best View Product Description

The 100% digital system allows complete privacy without having to search for a clear channel. The camera can be wall mounted and remotely controlled to zoom in, pan, or scan the room. The digital menu is controlled by a toggle switch found on the 2.4Ghz parents unit. The clear picture is transmitted either in full color when the lights are on, or in black & white night vision with the use of LED lights to provide a look at your baby in the dark.

The digital picture on the 2.5″ LCD screen of the parents unit has a range of 350′ from the nursery unit and transmits privately and securely.

Summer Infant Best View Features

  • One 2.5ghz parents unit
  • 2.5″ LCD color screen
  • Belt clip
  • One touch on/off button for reduced battery drain
  • Toggle switch to navigate menus for changing camera angle, camera settings and volume control
  • Rechargeable battery and A/C adapter
  • Battery and signal strength
  • Automatic shut off of the video screen preventing unnecessary drain on the batteries
  • Parent unit stand
  • Light and sound indicators
  • Full color camera with black and white night vision
  • Camera pan, scan and zoom
  • Microphone

Summer Infant Best View Review

This monitor offers the security of a 100% digital transmission, meaning the image of your baby won’t be visible to others who might use the same channel. The 2.5″ LCD screen is a great size for viewing your baby in the handheld parent unit. Night vision makes it easy to check in on your child and the on/off button means you can look and then let the screen turn back off to avoid disturbing your own sleep in the middle of the night with constant light from the screen.

The panning, scanning and zooming features of the camera make it easy to keep track of baby, even with a lot of movement. Extra cameras can also be added to the unit and set up in different rooms or at different angles.

Wireless home networks might interfere with the performance of this monitor. While additional cameras can be added, additional parent units are not available. The addition of a complete set can provide an extra parent unit attached to a different camera for dual parent coverage.

The Best View monitor is rated as having a very clear picture with little to no static, and the 2.5″ LCD is large enough to see well. Most users have been very pleased with the performance of the unit.

The Summer Infant Best View Handheld Color Video Monitor has all of the features a parent could ask for in a unit of this type. It gives a great view of the baby from all angles with the remote controlled panning and zooming features and the night vision lets you see your baby at night. If you are looking for a clear, color view of your baby, this monitor fits the bill.

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Namibia From The Air

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Last October I joined the Schoeman family on one of the fly-in safaris they have been operating in Namibia’s Skeleton Coast region since the 1970s. Words won’t do justice to what was a real adventure, but hopefully this provides just a taster of the experience.

These incredible safaris began when Windhoek based lawyer, Louw Schoeman, realised the potential in this wilderness area for flying in small numbers of guests and giving them a ‘desert experience’. Over the years, his name became synonymous with the Skeleton Coast and his safaris became known in the international travel circles as a   unique  wilderness experience. In the late 1980s his sons Andre and Bertus became part of the team as pilot guides. They have now been joined by youngest brother, Henk, and latterly by Bertus’ wife Helga.

Today the family members take groups of up to eight guests into this beautiful and remote region. My three night, four day trip was hosted by husband and wife team Bertus and Helga, and even though John had raved about a similar trip a couple of years ago, I had no inkling of the experience to come.

Having already seen the majestic Sossusvlei Dunes and had a quick look around the Wolwedans Nature reserve which is also pretty special, I wasn’t sure the scenery could get any better. I was wrong – very wrong!

Our two planes set off from Wolwedans heading towards the coast with Helga and Bertus giving a running commentary on what was unfolding below us. We flew over the Sossusvlei dunes – almost more spectacular from the air than the ground – before turning north to fly along the Atlantic shoreline. Dropping down onto a deserted beach for lunch we had a chance to experience at first hand the howling wind and wild sea that caused misery to many ships in the past. Flying further up the coast during the afternoon was wonderful – just sitting back and watching the sea whiz past about 100 feet beneath us. Every now and then we’d swoop inland to look at a shipwreck, abandoned mining post or a seal colony before heading back out to skim the clear blue sea.

Around mid-afternoon we turned inland, flying over the spectacular grey/brown Ugab formations. After a couple of exhilarating circuits flying just above the peaks, we landed on a makeshift runway on a valley floor. After a brief walk to examine the extraordinary geology of the region we set off again for the short hop to the first night’s camp, leaving the planes parked for the night like two very lost large birds. After 20 minutes drive through a remote desert landscape we rounded a corner to be greeted by a small thatched mess tent with sundowners all ready. The camp was simple, but given the logistics of getting things to these remote wilderness areas this was not surprising, and the twin-bedded tents were perfectly comfortable with everything you need for the night.

Early morning coastal fog means flying tends to start around lunchtime, so our second morning was vehicle based, exploring the strange moonscape features of the area. Round each corner there was something different to look at, from ancient cave paintings and weirdly wonderful rock formations to welwitschia plants, a distant relative of the fir tree that lives for up to 2,000 years. Fascinating, and unlike anything I’ve seen before.

The highlight of the second afternoon’s flight was flamingo spotting. With no warning – the Schoemans love to surprise their guests – we flew over some man made salt pans and startled huge flocks of flamingos into the air with us. With cameras clicking like crazy, it was spectacular watching these graceful birds flying just below.

After another beach landing we set off into the coastal dunes of the Skeleton Coast National Park which were every bit as spectacular as Sossusvlei and far better for the fact that there was no one else around. We spent a wonderful couple of hours revelling in the sand but I can’t say more as it would spoil the surprises for anyone intending to do the trip themselves!

We arrived at Purros, the second night’s camp, as the sun was setting. Situated in the heart of the Kaokoland region – one of the last strongholds of the Himba tribes and home to the elusive desert elephant – the camp is idyllically located in a pretty, tree-lined sandy river bed with stunning views to the distant mountains.

There is more game in this area, but we got off to a shaky start the next morning when Bertus and his team had to add a large stone and a stick to the components under the bonnet of our game vehicle. The logistics of keeping mechanical things working in this environment must be enormous but they are all first-class mechanics, so we were soon moving again.

Among the things that really stick in my mind from this morning – apart from more glorious scenery – were the enormous flocks of ostrich we saw: 40, 50 and more, just wandering across the vast empty planes. Bertus knows the whole area like the back of his hand and was determined to find desert elephant: after some searching, he succeeded. A lone bull to begin with and then a few females. Taller and thinner than their non-desert counterparts, they have evolved over the years so that they can scratch out a living in this arid area. They don’t get many visitors but seemed quite content for us to sit and watch for a while.

Back in the planes, we landed briefly on the beach to search for multicoloured agate stones. This seriously challenged my 10kg baggage allowance but the stones still look every bit as lovely in their new home back in the UK. Then it was on up to Namibia’s northern border with Angola, where we turned inland to follow the Kunene River. As the coastal dunes gradually disappeared behind us we started to see the occasional crocodile in the water below.

Vehicles were waiting at the landing strip and we set off for the final camp of our trip. Just as it seemed we couldn’t be surprised by anything else, we dropped into the huge Hartmann Valley. What the early explorers must have felt when they reached this bit of land is anyone’s guess. Vast, empty, hostile and yet spectacularly beautiful. After winding along the valley floor, we climbed a hill to stop and look back. I was entranced by the seemingly endless orange/red landscape dotted with a few lone oryx, and perfectly framed by the distant Angolan mountains. Words could never do it justice, and sadly, nor do my photographs.

The following morning a gentle boat ride down the Kunene River, spotting birds and drinking in the river scenery, was the perfect way to wind down, before a final bit of excitement: prospecting for diamonds on the Angolan river shore. I felt as if I’d been away for weeks, not a couple of days, and had seen almost more than I could take in.

This doesn’t even begin to describe the adventure that is a Schoeman trip. It is by no means a luxury holiday. Accommodation and food are simple, and the packed itinerary is, at times, quite demanding. But I feel privileged to have experienced the guiding and knowledge imparted by Bertus and Helga. Bertus grew up here and his passion for all that we saw was infectious. I would be amazed if I experience another assault on my senses quite like these four days – but then I doubt there is anywhere else on earth quite like the Skeleton Coast.



http://www.aardvarksafaris.com/articles-namibia-fromtheair.htm

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Three Things for Affiliate Marketers to Survive Online

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Every affiliate marketer is always looking for the successful market that gives the biggest paycheck. There are tactics that have worked before with online marketing and is continuing to work in the online affiliate marketing world of today. These top three marketing tips will help you increase your sales and survive in the affiliate marketing online.

1. Using unique web pages to promote your product.

It is best to have a site focusing on each and every product and nothing more. Always include product reviews on the website and also include testimonials from users who have already tried the product. Be sure that these customers are more than willing to allow you to use their names and photos on the site of the specific product you are marketing.

You can also write articles highlighting the uses of the product and include them on the website as an additional page. Make the pages attractive, compelling and include calls to act on the information.

2. Offer free reports to your readers.

Create auto-responder messages that will be mailed to those who input their personal information into your sign up box. Place useful information into their in boxes at certain specified period, you will remind them of the product they thought they want later and will find out that the sale is closed. Be sure that the content is directed toward specific reasons to buy the product. Do not make it sound like a sales pitch.

Focus on important points like how your product can make life and things easier and more enjoyable. Include compelling subject lines in the email. Convince those who signed up for your free reports that they will be missing something big if they do not avail of your products and services.

3. Get targeted traffic to your product.

Many visitors will not come back to your website unless it is very appealing. So try to write a minimum of 2 articles per week, with at least 300-600 words in length. By continuously writing and maintaining these articles you can generate as many as 100 targeted readers to your site in a day.

Always remember that only 1 out of 100 people are likely to buy your product or get your services. If you can generate as much as 1,000 targeted hits for your website in a day that means you can made 10 sales based on the average statistic.

The tactics given above does not really sound very difficult to do, if you think about it. It just requires a little time and an action plan on your part. The Expert Guide to Affiliate Marketing. Try to use these tips for several affiliate marketing programs. You can end maintaining a good source of income and surviving in this business that not all marketers can do.

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5 Reasons to Use a Male “Enhancement” Pill!

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No matter how much you deny, the fact that intimacy is one of the most important parts of a love-relationship can never be denied. When you make love with your partner, you give her all that you have within you – from your soul to the deepest feelings that you possess for her.

However, there are a few men, who are unable to express themselves properly in bed. This leads to a lot of complications in their lives. This is where a male enhancement pill comes into the picture.

If you are wondering why you need such a pill, following are the top five reasons that support the same:

  1. To gain self-confidence – When you are good in bed, your partner is happy and satisfied with you; when your partner is pleased, you feel happy, which leads to creation and development of self-confidence in your heart. There’s absolutely nothing else that can make you feel good, than keeping your partner happy.
  2. To keep away from all the problems in your relationship – I am sure you are going to agree with me when I say that being good in bed helps you strengthen your relationship. When you know how to do things the right way, you have less of problems with your partner. No doubt minor problems are bound to arise, but if you are good in bed, you can always bring a smile on her face at the end of the day.
  3. To get a nice woman in life – If you are not married already and want to get a warm-hearted woman in your life, you’ve got to show your charms in bed. To do so, you surely need a male enhancement pill, which allows the beast in you to come out and explore the beauty in front of you.
  4. To have a long-lasting ‘climax’ – Who wants to get it done in five or ten minutes? You surely need more energy and more erection to make it last for long. If this is what you want, you can get it with the help of a pill that helps you enjoy a longer session of intimacy.
  5. To win your partner forever – Unless you give her all the pleasures in bed, you can’t expect her to stick with you forever. To win her for all your life and turn her into your wife, you surely need such a pill.

It is time for you to gain confidence and please her in the most beautiful manner!

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Forex Trading Review – Top 4 Forex Trading Strategies Revealed

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Many trading investors especially beginners would like to learn the best trading strategy for them. There are four that are commonly used by experts. These are the swing, discretionary, scalping, and automated trading. First thing to consider before entering the Foreign Exchange Market is to identify which trading style suits you best. Several factors may affect your trading style like your time and capabilities. This article will give you and idea on how each of these trading strategies work:

Swing Trading:

It is almost similar with Day Trading where you could use many trading systems. Its chart time fame is longer than that of day trading. It includes three types of trades, the trend trading, counter trend trading and range trading.

Discretionary Trading:

It does both technical and fundamental analysis. This trading style use visuals like charts to see the pattern of the movement of the market condition. It analyzes the market on a regular basis therefore giving the trader a better understanding of the trading environment. It also applies quantitative analysis to forecast traders’ earnings.

Scalping:

It uses the fundamental analysis to predict the future exchange rates. Traders who use this style watch the economic condition as a whole. They base their analysis on news that would affect the economy like natural disasters, politics, price hikes etc. Before the market adjusts to the condition they make a quick buying decision then sell once the market has recovered.

Automated Trading:

This is the most commonly used by both new and old traders. Trading is possible with little or no human intervention through the use of automated software programs. These trading robots were designed by expert traders. Since Foreign Exchange trading entails a lot of time and effort they saw the need for system to do the work for them. They programmed these robots based on their trading strategies so they need not to be in front of their PCs all the time. If you are the type of person who doesn’t have enough time to monitor the market 24/7 this is a trading style that will best work for you. Having the right knowledgeable, discipline and a reliable tool should not only make your trading easier but will also increase your chances of getting profits in no time.

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The Dawning of a Unique Life Concept

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As a financial advisor, I have never approached my role as just a job. I always sought to be more than a money-mover for my clients. But after eight years of hearing the stories of nearly two thousand clients, an idea began to take shape in my mind, a new way of looking at my job. Really, a new way of looking at everything I do. And then two unique personalities made it all come together.

The first individual had a net worth of almost $20 million. As I drove to my scheduled meeting with him, I imagined what he would be like. Here was a man who by most people’s standards had truly “made it.” But when I met him, I was stunned. The man who sat with me – this person who had achieved every single financial goal he’d ever set for himself – was not only miserable and lonely, but also unhealthy.

Shortly thereafter I met another individual whose net worth was far less but his attitude and demeanor were totally opposite. This middle-aged man met me at the door, and I could already hear the happy voices that filled the house. There was a different tone and feeling in this second home. I stayed for dinner and heard the family story not just from this potential client and his wife, but from their adult children and several grandchildren, who all took turns jumping in on the story, laughing as they shared the memories they’d all made together.

This was the point in my life when the concepts of my role as a financial advisor began to formulate in my heart and mind. From that moment on I asked everyone I met, “What are the three things in your life that truly give it meaning?” Everyone’s answers are different, but one thing is very common – most people don’t know those answers off their top of their head.

I then saw that that could become part of my role in life – helping clients by guiding them toward those answers. If I approached my job in a certain way, I could encourage and support my clients to live a life full of joy and meaning.

When I started approaching my work that way, I realized I was doing more than serving clients. I was definitely serving them, but I also became friends with these people, a trusted friend. I mean, how much better is it to have a job where you’re building relationships with people as opposed to being the person who simply minds their mutual funds?

Now not only was I introducing this unique way of living life to others, but I was living that rich and fulfilling life too! I had the best of both worlds!

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5 Local SEO Strategies You Can Do Today!

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Local businesses are looking to capitalise on using search engines such as Google to drive traffic to their website and through their front door. Research has indicated that 60 to 70 percent of in store purchases start with research online.

For a small business this is a massive opportunity to help grow your business with an effective local SEO campaign. Below are 5 strategies you can do today to start your local SEO campaign started and dominating your competition

1 – List your business in Google Places

List and verify your local business listing in Google Places is a fantastic place to start your local SEO campaign, without a listing you will find it difficult to place your business in the top positions on page 1.

2 – Complete your Google Place page listing

When filling in your listing, ensure you fill out your listing to Google guidelines and so that it is 100% complete. Here are some handy tips to help get the most out of your listing:

Address: This gives Google an indication of your geographical location so they can relate your listing to searches. When completing your address include their suburb you are located in and the city name; a common fault is just to list the suburb. Including the city name in the address will help Google know you want to target your city and also help you by embedding part of your targeted search phrase(s) in the listing.

Categories: You have the option to include several categories that are related to your business. However, you only need to fill in the first category from the designated Google options. The remaining fields for categories can be used to fill with options that you may find more related or keyword rich.

3 – Get reviews

A massive factor in the way Google decides how to rank listings in Google Places seems to be the number of reviews a listing has. The more reviews, the better your changes are of being closer to the top. A great way to get reviews from current and past clients is ask for them in your electronic correspondence, eg, provide a link in an email newsletter or a link from your email signature.

Google will also use and display reviews from other review sites. A good way to find out what review sites Google are using in your industry is to do a few Google searches and take note of them. Now you know other review where you should list your business and ask customers to review you that will help in your local SEO.

4 – Build links to your website

Building links to your website is a necessary task if you want to see your website move up the search results page. There are many ways to complete this task and to do it yourself can be a little time consuming, but very rewarding when you achieve the results you want. To get the best results from your link building, it is a good idea to mix up the anchor text of the links that you build. They should range from keyword phrase rich links, products you sell, to your brand/business name. An important aspect of link building is to get the right anchor text pointing at the right landing page. For example, if one of the products you sell is blue widgets, it is advisable to build some links with the anchor text “blue widgets” and point them at your blue widget product page. This will inturn help you rank highly in the search engines when people search for “blue widgets”.

5 – Build Links to your Google Place page

Just like building links to your website, it can be a good idea to build links to your Google Place page. This will give Google an indication that your listing and business is very relevant to the keyword phrases that you are targeting; making you the authority in your industry and geographical location.

By implementing the above 5 local SEO strategies you will be heading in the right direction to have your business listed at the top of the search results and boosting the exposure of your business to your local marketplace.

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Disney Channel Auditions – What Do You Have to Do to Get One? Part I

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Here are some things to consider with regard to getting Disney Channel Auditions

Do You Have Skills and Talents Other Than Just Acting?

You should know that a lot of Disney performers have skills that are not limited just to acting. They can also sing and dance and often lend their voices to animated characters. There are specific agents that look after these areas and sometime in the future of your acting career you may want to consider having separate agents if you want to work in more than one field.

Is All This Really Necessary?

You will find people who will tell you that it is not necessary to do ‘all that’ and if you do, guess what? They will be right. Anything is possible, BUT having those skills can dramatically increase your chances for success. Have skills other than just being able to act also widens your range of possibilities to get work. You automatically make yourself available for more types of jobs. Look at Zack Efron for example. He sings, acts and can dance!

It’s About More Than Just The Look

What I have found is that many youngsters rely on being good looking or even beautiful. Those who fit into that category should realize that there are so many good looking kids out there and that if they really want to have a chance at getting Disney Channel auditions, because of the enormous amount competition, it is really necessary to do something to set themselves apart from the rest of the crowd.

What Agents Want

But first, remember that when you are looking for an agent that you will have a better chance of getting signed if you have a headshot and professional actor resume and have taken some classes or participated in on-going training. What’s even better is if you are training in a reputable school and/or acting teacher. You can increase those chances even more if you have some experience performing. All of this shows you have at least some experience in the field that you are hoping to break into and that you are serious.

Do You Have Stars In Your Eyes Or Are You Serious?

Casting directors and agents know that there are so many kids and even adults with ‘stars in their eyes’ and the dream of becoming famous who are not even willing to do the basic work that is necessary to get started. They just want to be discovered. People like that won’t go very far and those casting directors and agents don’t want to work with people like that. If you really want it, then you have to be willing to work for it! Remember it’s not about being discovered, it’s about working hard to position yourself to be discovered.

How Can You Prepare?

You could take private singing lessons, join your local youth theatre group, drama club at school or even work as an extra to get experience in a professional environment. These are all ways of giving yourself necessary exposure and gaining experience. Just keep in mind that when you do meet with an agent you should always take a parent or guardian with you and you should never be expected to give them any money up front. Agents take a cut from what you earn so they don’t get any money until you do.

Stay tuned from more articles about Disney casting calls and general information about how to start an acting career.

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