Want your students to learn more in class? Add humor. “What? No way!” you may be thinking. “We are disappointed enough when the students are distracted during class, but now we distract them ourselves?”
Adding humor to your classes might seem scattered, unconventional and even just plain crazy, but it actually helps students become more engaged in class and retain more information. Humor also has the added benefit of improving student health.
Utilizing humor in the classroom is a good way to help prioritize student health at your university. Humor helps relieve stress and can act as pain relief, among a host of physical and mental benefits like:
When students are healthy, they will be more apt to succeed at college and be less likely to drop out. When combined with physical education and good nutrition, humor can help students pursue a healthy lifestyle.
Universities have already understood the need to adapt to technology. Students are more connected in the classroom now more than ever with tablets and laptops more than pencils and notebooks. It makes sense that the most relevant humor to relate to students can be found on the internet.
The internet is a great tool to find humor that will not only be relevant to your students, but relevant to today’s society while doubling as a teaching tool. The key to adding humor as an educator is knowing who your target audience is – what do your current students find funny?
There are many ways your university can add humor to the curriculum. For example, a creative writing professor may want to open a class with a series of children’s creative writing stories to make the class more comfortable with sharing their own stories. An improve class can also be added to the curriculum to let students let loose, learn cooperation, and help them feel comfortable in front of an audience. When topics are made up on the fly, students will have a blast trying to be funny.
When using humor in the class room, follow these do’s and don’ts to keep your students learning and laughing all through the semester: