ERIC Number: ED232381
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Apr
Reference Count: 0
Everything You Always Wanted to Know about Using Humor in Education but Were Afraid to Laugh.
Kelly, William E.
The importance of laughter and humor to enhance education, and special education in particular, is addressed. A sense of humor is an attitude, and humor together with enthusiasm helps students enjoy the learning process. Humor can make students become more alert, and can have very positive influences on affect. A funny remark, a pleasant disposition, and a laugh can set an agreeable tone; all can contribute to an "up" feeling about oneself and others. In addition, humor can help build a positive self-image for students and adults. Humor can also be used to simplify, relax, illustrate, and motivate students. Much of the research on humor supports the view that the positive approach is a beneficial mode of operation. Laughing with and not at students is important, especially with learning disabled and most other special education students. Humor can provide relief in a tense moment and help break down resistance to learning. Many psychologists have recognized humor as important and have encouraged the use of humor in the cognitive and intellectual development of the child. Psychologists have suggested the following functions of humor: humor as therapy, humor as a sixth sense, humor as a safety valve, and humor in counseling. Teachers exert an influence on students not only with what they say but also with the intonation of their voices, their smiles, gesture, clothes, movements, and their whole attitude toward students. Humor can be used in education with posters, puzzles, cartoons, tests, drama, newsletters, and audiovisuals. A "Humor Handout" is included which contains a puzzle and cartoons, 100 ideas and suggestions on using humor in education, and a listing of books about humor and the philosophy of humor. (SEW)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual International Convention of The Council for Exceptional Children (61st, Detroit, MI, April 4-8, 1983).