Worksheets Don't Grow Dendrites Chapter 6

Thanks to Amanda at One Extra Degree for hosting the book study link up today.  Are you linked up?  Even if you haven't done the other chapters or don't have a blog, consider connecting with others through the comments sections so we can all learn from each other.

Chapter 6 is all about humor.  After reading the chapter, my big take away was that I needed to use it more in the classroom.  I have a sarcastic sense of humor so I had to sensor it in the classroom because I knew it wasn't great for young ones plus they are often so literal that they don't understand sarcasm even if it isn't meant in a negative way.  That's not to say that I didn't joke with the kids and we didn't get silly because we did that a lot.  Even though I had high expectations in the classroom and expected a lot from my students, I still showed them the "fun" side of me and would joke around and have a good time.

I think one of the biggest ways I brought humor into the classroom was through books.  I loved doing read alouds that got the kids laughing.  Junie B. Jones was one of my favorites to read.  I would often find myself cracking up as I was reading - even if the kids didn't get it.  Usually by second grade, I had one or two kids who "got" her humor along with me and as the year progressed or we explained certain jokes, more and more kids caught on.  Another book that used to drive me nuts but the kids loved was Skippyjon Jones books.  My teaching partner would always egg the kids on so they would ask me to read it.  She knows I had NO spanish background and I would just fumble through the words but it would make the kids laugh and laugh.  They also loved the pigeon books by Mo Willems.

I always had a basket of joke books in my classroom library and every year there were a few students who just latched onto those.  I rarely read them or did anything with them in class but I wish I would have.  It would be the perfect thing to do during transition time or if you have a few minutes before specials or dismissal.  Read a few jokes!  Quick and easy.

I really love the idea of students coming up with their own jokes or comics.  That would be an awesome genre study - study comics (like in the newspaper) and comic books and have the students create their own.  They would absolutely love that in second grade.  It would also be fun to share a joke each day, maybe during calendar or morning message.  As the year starts off, the teacher could supply the jokes or puns using books for help when needed.  As the students, understand it a little better, they can start to bring in or write jokes to share.  It would be a quick way to start the morning off with a little bit of laughter.

Since I read this chapter, I've been thinking of places in a classroom that you could add jokes for some quick easy laughter throughout the day.
-write a joke on the board before they come in each morning
-keep a joke jar on your desk
-type the joke on an activity they are working on (like after they write their name and date there could be a little joke in a small font)
-on the door so they can check it out as they leave the classroom
-in the hall, especially in an area where they might have to line up or wait
-at calendar or during morning message - you could write them or just read them
-a joke center - included joke books, comics, maybe even puppets to "tell" the jokes