Laughing and fun are especially important around the holiday season.
Stress can run rampant, thanks to preparing for parties, family gatherings, money overspent on unnecessary or even unwanted gifts, or money not spent.
Humor--the unexpected, delightful twist--helps kids intellectually, socially, physically and even spiritually.
Humor and laughter...
- Makes kids more creative, spontaneous, and flexible
- Makes kids able to see under the surface of things, or beyond the obvious.
- Makes kids more social, because shared laughter is funnier
- Makes kids more likeable
- Helps kids deal with change or adversity
- Helps kids to not take themselves too seriously
- Helps avoid getting stuck in one emotion
- Clears away depression
- Relieves stress
- Teaches empathy
- Teaches the difference between laughing at someone and laughing with someone
- Teaches appropriateness
- Teaches when and where certain humor is acceptable--or not
- Shakes up the lymph system
- Improves the immune system
- Makes kids feel that the world is OK, everything is balanced, sadness and happiness can coexist.
Most kids "get" humor. They laugh when something's funny. The challenge is to teach them to be humorous--to think of the unexpected and express it in socially appropriate ways.
Kids learn how to be funny from experiencing it. That's why I use it so much in the classroom.
I like to put a Christmas Creative Writing Speech Bubble up on the SMARTboard. Kids take turns thinking of funny speech bubble captions. They learn from each other: what's funny, what's hurtful, or embarrassing--and why.
I created a tutorial in the Christmas Writing Kit called How to Write with Humor, to help activate the funny bone.
It's a 2-minute bell-ringer activity. Sometimes we do it just before dismissal, and it sends them home smiling--and thinking.
My Christmas Creative Writing Speech Bubbles include plenty of Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and non-denominational pages.
Sometimes laughter is the best medicine, and the best holiday gift.