The Powerful Giggle-Stress Busters for Students November 15, 2021 By Bekki Leave a Comment This content may contain affiliate links. He sneaks up behind me with a grin. “Hey mom,” he whispers. “wanna see something funny? SWHOOSH! Out comes the phone with the goofy picture, corny joke, or hilarious video. Laughter. Science knows its benefits , the Bible declares its power, our kids love its affect, and by-golly, we all need a good healthy dose of it. Did you know that the funny bone is connected to learning retention, relieving stress, thinking creatively, and is a magic wand to teaching students?Bekki Sayler “But I’m not funny,” you say. You can change that! Start studying and collecting good, clean, goofy jokes, images, and videos. If you want to be a super hero start surprising your kids/students with jokes every day. But there are rules. Here are some research-supported tips for using humor to increase retention, from Sarah Henerdon Do Use humor to enhance classroom joyUse humor to develop a sense of communityUse content-related humorUse age-appropriate humor“Sandwich” humor between instruction and repetition Avoid SarcasmCruel or inappropriate humorForced humorOff-topic humorToo much humor Weaving laughter, smiles, and giggles into teaching and learning is an unfair advantage in the hands of a homeschool mom, classroom teacher, or professional eduator. Laughter disarms resistance and allows information to get catapulted directly into the center of the memory. It’s why Crash Course videos are so powerful for students. While we do not agree with all of the facts or view points, we do lean heavily on them for science and history because of the perfect blend of valuable vocabulary and processes with unsurpassable and surprising humor. Kids and their parents need a daily dose of laughter to combat stress. Because stress is so bad. Science says so and we KNOW so. Physical Symptoms of Stress SweatingIncreased heart rate or blood pressureVertigoShortness of breathMuscle tensionHeadaches and stomachachesFatigue Emotional Symptoms of Stress Hostility, irritability, and other mood changesIncreased worryingHelplessnessLoneliness Behavioral Symptoms of Stress Binge or reduced eatingDrug or alcohol misuseErratic sleep habits Cognitive Symptoms of Stress Memory lossLoss of concentrationNegative outlookDissociation (i.e., disconnection from your thoughts, feelings, and identity) Why Add Laughter to teaching? Short-term benefits of laughter Cools down your stress responseDecrease your heart rate and blood pressureGives you that “ahhhh” feeling afterwards Long-term effects of laughter Improves your immune systemRelieves painmake it easier to cope with difficult situationshelps you connect with other peoplelessens your stress, depression and anxiety and may make you feel happier An Unfunny Mom’g guide to Adding Humor to Teaching TRY. Hold fast to the FACT that humor can be learned. In fact, developing or refining your sense of humor may be easier than you think.Turn on your humor radar. Look for funny appropriate humor everywhere: shows you watch, music you listen to, greeting cards, memes, videos.Laugh. Don’t hold in your giggles. Let it out to play. Be like these quintuplets.Find funny friends and spend time with them. Teach your kids to do the same. (Just teach the rules above!)Add eye rolling humor into your kids’ day with notes, goofy learning activities, and jokes. How to Seamlessly add Humor to Math Lessons Get a set of joke filled math lessons that reenforce core math skills.Print them out.Select 1-3 joke pages for every few days.Sit back and watch the smiles creep in. We need these!! Important: Know what isn’t funny. Don’t laugh at the expense of others. Some forms of humor aren’t appropriate. Give your kids some grace as they work this out in their lives! You may need to set some boundaries. I have five sons- we definitely have joke boundaries.