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Terrific Teaching Tips, Issue #038-- April 2013 Ezine
April 01, 2013
Hopefully, you have enjoyed your March/Winter break and are ready for the last leg of your year journey. Believe me when I say that in a blink of the eye, it will be June!!
I'm sure you have heard the saying, "Laughter is the best medicine". I truly believe that. Laughter, joy, smiles need to be expressed and exhibited in your daily life and laughter does belong in your school and in your classroom.
Now I'm not saying that you should be a standup comedian and act like you would in a comedy club. However, there is a place and time and a way of accepting your students (whether they are in grade one or high school) for just being who they are - "unconditional acceptance".
Get a bunch of teachers together sharing funny stories about their students (which may have been annoying or frustrating at the time), and you will hear roars of laughter.
Having a sense of humour can go a long way in helping us as teachers accept our students unconditionally. If we can laugh with them and enjoy them, we may add a new dimension to our teaching.
Laughter in the classroom has many benefits. For instance, it makes everyone feel great. It prevents you from frowning, being angry or feeling sorry for yourself. It creates a positive energy and it should be heard in every classroom from you and your students.
Unfortunately many teachers avoid or discourage laughter. Perhaps they are afraid that they may lose control and things would get out of hand. This is a valid point!
Humour in the classroom can be inappropriate and most lessons are taught in a serious manner. You are not an entertainer, or someone that gives flippant or sarcastic comments.
But, you need to be aware that there are certain words or actions that create laughter which are appropriate and motivating in the right situations. Establishing an excellent environment for learning is almost impossible without laughter.
Laughter can be rejuvenating, it relaxes you and easies tension, You want to help your students develop a healthy sense of humour and encourage them to laugh.
However, a student sitting on a tack, falling down or getting hit in the face with an eraser is NOT funny and should be discouraged (obviously).
You can share funny stories that happened to you when you were your students' age; or stories of what happened to your own children or spouse (or significant other). Laugh at yourself if you make mistakes; e.g, misspelling or mispronouncing a word.
Appropriate humour should be welcomed in your classroom as it makes your students feel good about you, themselves and their school.
When you like and enjoy your students, it makes teaching a genuine pleasure. As i said before, laughter brings a whole new dimension to your classroom.
You will enjoy your students in every way. You will take pleasure in what they do, say and how they act. You will gain a new appreciation of them and it may create a new source of enjoyment in your own life. You will definitely look forward to your drive/commute in the morning.
Remember smile a lot. It costs nothing and it's beyond priceless. "The most wasted day is that which we have not laughed." - Chamfort.
Read my page on humour in the classroom and get some other tips on creating laughter in the classroom.
Have a great month of April and thanks for visiting priceless-teaching-strategies.com.
Future newsletter topics will discuss sharing joy in your colleague's success, coping techniques, achieving excellence, and much more.
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