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Humour in Learning

Humour in Learning

I would rather entertain and hope that people learned something than educate people and hope they were entertained.
WALT DISNEY

It is time to up your game…Sit back and read our top five facts about why you should use more humour in L&D.

FACT 1: YOU CAN’T LEARN ANYTHING IF YOU’RE ASLEEP

People learn nothing when they’re asleep and very little when they’re bored so keep them entertained, engaged and awake! As long as the learning messages are clear and the humour is relevant then people will have a better chance of remembering, and applying, what they’ve learned.

FACT 2: IT’S FUNNY TO LAUGH AT OTHER PEOPLE

Apparently the attention spans of our learners are decreasing. Maybe they are, or maybe they’re just bored. Humour helps here in two ways: it gets a message across quickly for bite-sized learning and it helps maintain attention when you need to deliver a longer learning programme.

When it’s used well, humour can help learners to relax and see the impact of their behaviour in a light-hearted way, without feeling embarrassed or put on the spot. By showing a scenario that portrays a character (a made up one – not Sandra in Accounts) with the same issues, individuals can drop their emotional guard and admit to themselves that they too need to change.

FACT 3: IT REALLY IS ‘FUNNY BECAUSE IT’S TRUE’

It’s actually the truth of a situation that makes it so funny. At Video Arts our guiding principle is that the comedy has to come from the learning. Humour in learning comes most easily from showing the ‘wrong way’ to behave; it’s usually quite funny, it provokes discussion and it lets learners draw out lessons for themselves.

FACT 4: EMPLOYEES ARE EASILY DISTRACTED BECAU…OH LOOK A RAINBOW!

Apparently the attention spans of our learners are decreasing. Maybe they are, or maybe they’re just bored. Humour helps here in two ways: it gets a message across quickly for bite-sized learning and it helps maintain attention when you need to deliver a longer learning programme.

FACT 5: HUMOUR IS DEAD SERIOUS

All joking aside, we’re not just saying that humour makes learning more effective for a laugh: lots of writers and academics (who most people wouldn’t consider the least bit funny) have conducted really serious studies that help us make the case.

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