Laughter Day is celebrated worldwide every year on the first Sunday in May. Dr. Madan Kataria first introduced the concept in 1998. He founded the Laughter Yoga Movement. He believed that laughter is a powerful means to generate positive emotions. The movement gained popularity, and now there are thousands of Laughter Clubs all across the globe. Members of these Clubs gather in auditoriums, parks, and other open spaces to laugh together deliberately. Today, World Laughter Day celebrations are no longer confined to Laughter Clubs only. Schools, colleges, offices, and other institutions are also joining in.
Importance of Laughter Day Activities in the Classroom
The tender mind of the young children was adversely affected by the largely negative environment that prevailed during the pandemic. Laughter day celebrations allow them to do some damage control, reduce their discomfort and look at the brighter side of life in the hopes of a better future. Sharing enjoyable moments with a peer group can spread genuine happiness.
As the schools were closed for quite a long time, students had not met each other for months. Now that they are meeting each other once again, they feel a sense of disconnection. Some laughter in the classroom can help them restore their old bonds with friends and teachers.
Some students feel awkward, anxious, and stressed after joining the class offline. A good laugh at the start of the day can resolve the stress response symptoms.
Interesting Laughter Day Activities for the Classroom
The laughter day activities suggested here are meant to bring the class together to spend some fun-filled moments away from the world of textbooks and notebooks.
Activity: Bulletin board decoration
1. Remove all documents/notices pinned on the flannel/bulletin board of the classroom for a week.
2. Allow the students to take charge of the bulletin board and capture some fun elements there.
3. Ask them to bring funny photographs, cartoons, quotes, and even emojis with funny expressions from old newspapers, magazines, and comic books. They can also draw funny pictures. Or, download hilarious pictures from the internet and take the printout.
4. Let them pin up all the laughing materials on the bulletin board and design a funny college for sheer joy and amusement as per their whims and fancies.
Activity: Laughing out loudly together
1. Make the students stand in 4 rows.
2. Then, students in each row have to raise their hands and laugh out deliberately, making the loudest possible noise of HOHOHOHAHAHA for 3 minutes.
3. They have to laugh together and make eye contact while laughing.
4. The row that makes maximum noise constantly for 3 minutes will be declared the winner.
Activity: Fun with Tongue twisters
1. Write down the tongue twisters on the blackboard/whiteboard.
2. Students have to repeat a tongue twister at least five times.
3. They have to pronounce every word properly as well as quickly.
4. The moment one fumbles, they are out of the game.
5. Those who can correctly say all the tongue twisters will be winners.
6. Here are some tongue twisters which children can enjoy –
a. Red lorry, yellow lorry.
b. She sells seashells by the seashore.
c. I saw Susie sitting in a shoeshine shop / Where she shines, she sits / and where she sits, she shines.
d. Fuzzy Wuzzy was a bear, / Fuzzy Wuzzy had no hair,/ Fuzzy Wuzzy wasn't very fuzzy, was he?
e. If a dog chews shoes, whose shoes does he choose?
f. Growing glow-worm, glow on the glowing globe.
7. There are many more tongue twisters that students should feel free to share with the class.
Activity: Jokes in a Fishbowl
1. Keep an empty fishbowl in the classroom a week before the World Laughter Day celebrations.
2. Ask the students to write their favorite joke on paper and drop it into the bowl. They can also write about some funny real-life incidents, silly stories about their pets, and a scene from a comedy movie.
3. On the laughter day, each student will grab a paper chit randomly and read it out loudly.
4. The joke which creates the loudest laugh in the class will be declared the Best Joke of the Day.
5. The writer of Best Joke will be the Funny Boy or Funny Girl of the class and will get a Smiley Emoji Ball / Badge.
Activity: Dumb Charade
1. Dumb charade is a fun game that most children enjoy and can be played inside the classroom.
2. It is also a fun way to improve young children's creative skills and imagination.
3. Prepare some flashcards with dumb charade topics written on them.
4. It can be played as a team game where the class is divided into two teams. Or, it can be played individually.
5. Each student will pick a card, check the topic, and act out without speaking a word.
6. If their classmates guess it correctly, "the actor" earns a point. If they cannot guess, "the actor" loses a point.
7. Some dumb charade ideas for children are:
a. Moving like an elephant.
b. Dancing like a peacock.
c. Hiding like a mouse.
d. Jumping like a monkey.
e. Making Noises of Animals.
f. An activity like getting ready for school.
g. Climbing a mountain.
h. Catching fish from the river.
Teachers and students can sit together to plan out the Laughter Day activities. Young children have a highly innovative mindset. They can tweak the ideas given here to make the celebrations more fun and exciting. These activities can even be made a regular part of the classroom. Whether it's a laughter day or not does matter. This can be utilized to bring back the students' interest in offline classes.
Suggested Read: Professional Skill Development Tips for Teachers