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The Art of Teaching with Humor

Crafting Laughter

Teri Evans-Palmer

"Why a book on humor for teachers?" After dodgy decades of teaching in high schools infamous for gang entanglements, students behaving badly and apathetic administrators, followed by time in a middle school art room dubbed the "snake pit," Teri Evans-Palmer cheerfully accepted an adjunct position at a nearby university and enrolled in a doctoral program. Her heart goes out to teachers of all ages who sit in her humor sessions sharing stories that would make your heart pound. Inevitably, a teacher would ask, "Where can I get your book?"

The pages of this book come from times with Dr. Evans-Palmer's students when something funny made learning happen. There were plenty of days when the author felt like running into the woods screaming, but the best days were filled with tinkling moments enrobed in rollicking laughter, days she would happily relive again. Humor has both saved and served her as a teaching resource, a way to live connected to students, and a soft place to land when the burden of teaching knocks her over with the weight of it.

The Art of Teaching with Humor is for teachers everywhere who share the need to laugh in order to thrive and survive. It is filled with amusing scenarios and specific humor tools any teacher can use to boost student creativity, attention, engagement, and performance. It is also a guide for teacher educators, administrators, and professional development staff to consider, as it explains how synthesizing joyful humor with instructional content and delivery safeguards teachers’ emotional wellbeing and classroom performance.

List of Figures – List of Tables – Preface – Introduction – Humor’s Place in Art Education – What Good Humor Can Do for Art Teachers – Humor Connects Teachers with Students – Humor Invites Play, Divergent Thinking and Creativity – Conclusion: Our Best Bet for Teaching Tomorrow: Encouragement and Empathy for Educators – Bibliography.