Being silly for children’s fun and learning is written in the calendar. The expression to be “mad as a March hare” means to be crazy, and it is March. Children laugh far more times a day than adults do. Being serious is important, but laughter can help all of us cope with life’s stresses.
Silly antics can take no time at all and can happen practically anywhere. Absolutely no extra materials are needed to make faces at and with each other. You might want to make different ones or try and copy each other. You can use a mirror and see who makes the silliest ones. If you want to make sure you have your child’s attention for giving a few instructions, try making some very exaggerated expressions at the same time. Ask your child to say the instructions back to you, along with some silly faces.
Playing some silly games, like using bizarre words, covers up for the times when you don’t mean it. For example, ask kids to hang up the coats in the shower instead of the closet or to put the ice cream back in the dishwasher. Usually, they will howl with laughter. When you unintentionally get mixed up, like putting Little Brother’s coat on Big Sister when trying to hurry, it’s not so obvious. When getting ready to go outside, pretend to try and put on a child’s coat. It will be much too small but the enjoyment will be much fun. Or, zip your coat up on your child and then look everywhere for it. From such little interactions comes big learning.
A sense of humor is something that develops and it is surprisingly complicated. First, kids have to recognize a situation as unexpected or unintended. Then, they need to check if it’s scary or threatening in any way. If not, they can go ahead and giggle. Finding something funny requires brain processing.
Besides being silly for children’s fun and learning, crazyiness helps children bond with us and other people. When we share a laugh, we also share a relationship. Getting along with others is a work in progress, and being able to laugh together can make it easier. Can you and your child have some silly fun today?
A great new year’s resolution is to include more laughter; for kids laughing means learning. There are benefits for mind, body, and heart for all of us.
There are aspects of laughter that we are born with as part of our personalities, but a sense of humor is something that we develop. Besides needing a funny bone, we also need some specific brain connections.
In any situation, to find it humorous, the brain needs to recognize that something is unexpected or unintended. An ordinary action isn’t followed by a usual or predictable result. Very quickly, the brain has to decide if it’s hurtful or scary, or just unusual. The next step is figuring out how to react, like laughing or ducking for cover, squealing with delight or simply smiling. Getting all those steps coordinated is complicated. We can easily understand why kids often get the punch lines to jokes mixed up, find things funny that adults don’t, or don’t ‘get’ a joke. There’s a great deal to figure out. Humor builds on experiences.
Humor has a social context and gets passed along. Often, when one person laughs so will others. Sharing something humorous creates a link or bond between people. Kids laughing means learning and also connecting.
A few ways to include laughter in a day are to share jokes. Knock, knock jokes are fun and can go on and on. Making silly faces can happen almost anytime. Read some funny stories, or share any book and imagine a different outcome. Do something unexpected, like answering a banana when the phone rings or eating cereal with a baby spoon or putting on glasses upside down.
The number of times in a day children laugh is sometimes stated as 300-400 times. Even for those who find this to be great exaggerated, kids do laugh more often than adults. Did you know as grownups we only laugh 17.5 times a day? What’s happened to our sense of humor? Can you include more fun and laughter in each day?
Kids space jokes develop humor. How many times a day does your child laugh? No matter the number, it’s likely much more than you do as a parent or caregiver.
Q. Why did the cow go in the spaceship?
A. It wanted to go to the mooooooon.
Q. Which planet is Mickey Mouse’s favorite?
Q. What planet sings?
Q. Why wasn’t the man in the moon hungry?
A. He was full.
Q. What did the planet Mars say to Saturn?
A. Give me a ring sometime.
Q. How do parents in outer space get the baby to sleep?
A. They Rocket.
A sense of humor is something that grows. There is a great deal of learning involved and brain activity. First, children need to recognize that whatever is happening is unexpected or out of the ordinary. They have to figure out it is not intended to be hurtful or scary. Once the brain makes those connections, kids need to react with an appropriate emotional response, like laughing or squealing with glee. Linking all these and other thoughts and emotions is complicated. Is it any wonder kids often get the punch lines mixed up or find things funny that adults don’t?
Humor has a social aspect too. Kids will laugh at jokes and actions just because others are laughing. Imagination is also a part of humor. Our mind creates pictures that are funny and silly, like a cow in space. Jokes may have a best-before date. For kids to find to figure out the play on words of Saturn giving Mars a ring sometime, they need to connect the word ring with telephones. In the experience of kids now, phones beep, buzz, sing, chime, and make other noises. How many of us ask another person to ring us? We more than likely ask them to give us a call.
Kids space jokes develop humor and sharing a laugh develops a bond that can cross space.
A sense of humor in a child can be very different from an adult’s. Here are some fun fall and Halloween jokes for kids because H is for humor. Q. What did one leaf say to the other? A. I’m falling for you. Q. What did the tree say to the woodpecker? A. Leaf me … Continue reading H is for Humor: Fall and Halloween Jokes for Kids
Just in case you don’t believe that April Fool’s can help support kindergarten readiness, just think of how many times a sense of humor is important as a life-skill. Besides, who has more sense of fun than kids? In the spirit of fun, you can tell kids that you have decided to make a dip … Continue reading April Fool’s Fun, Play, and Kindergarten Readiness
Laughter is for learning, so having fun telling silly jokes can be part of the day for children’s development and kindergarten readiness. This time of year, there are some great Christmas jokes for kids, like this one: Q. What do monkeys sing at Christmas? A. Jungle Bells, Jungle Bells… To find that funny, brains need … Continue reading Kindergarten Readiness: Laughter is for Learning
Dads have a special and very different kind of humor and that helps kids develop their own understanding and sense of humor. Humor is much more than a reaction to a funny event, it is really a series of complex thinking. Children first need to notice what is happening and recognize that it is not … Continue reading Father’s Day Humor For Kids
Kindergarten readiness can’t be too serious, especially on April Fool’s Day. Silly little pranks are one way to help children develop their sense of humor. While we think humor is just a reaction to a funny event, it actually involves some complex thinking. First, children need to be able to tell that what is happening … Continue reading Kindergarten Readiness: April Fool’s Day Pranks for Kids
Did you know that telling jokes and sharing humor could be kindergarten readiness skills? A sense of humor is quite a complex series of thinking skills. Children need to recognize the intention, realize that something is different or unusual, and understand what it should be. Then, kids need to figure out the appropriate emotional response. … Continue reading Some Handy Ideas for Kindergarten Readiness: Humor
Writing that today can help kids and families with readiness for kindergarten isn’t an April Fool’s joke. There are tons of ways and I’ll show you a few. Today is devoted to humor. A sense of humor is actually a complicated series of thinking skills–recognizing intention, realizing something is irregular and understanding symbolism–and corresponding emotional responses. … Continue reading Readiness for Kindergarten – April Fool’s Fun For Kids