What's So Funny?: Humor-Based Activities for Social Skill Development

Rachel Chaiet, MS, OTR/L
ISBN 10:
ISBN 13:
Trade Paperback
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Product Dimensions:
6.00 x 9.00 x 0.46 inches

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Book Description

With ready-to-use lessons and strategies, What’s So Funny?: Humor-Based Activities for Social Skill Development provides readers with tools to help their clients improve their emotional intelligence through humor. Occupational therapists, speech-language pathologists, special educators, behavior therapists, and caregivers will benefit from the implementation of these strategies.

What’s So Funny? contains a curriculum of more than 50 activities that emphasize two main ideas. The first is that humor (linguistic or physical) can be taught to many individuals with autism spectrum disorder or other disorders through explicit instruction, exposure to various types of humor, and embracing the individual’s preferred sense of humor. The second is that humorous activities can be used to increase social engagement, which can sometimes be a challenge for those with developmental disabilities.

What’s So Funny? includes activities essential for individuals who:
  • Appear to have a very limited concept or basic developmental level of humor
  • Need to improve their understanding of socially appropriate humor
  • Lack understanding of appropriate times to use humor
  • Are nonverbal, have limited expressive communication skills, or use augmentative communication devices
  • Have a difficult time initiating social interactions with their peers
With a flexible program that can be used for either small groups or individuals from ages 7 years to adult, What’s So Funny?: Humor-Based Activities for Social Skill Development is a relevant and easy-to-use resource. Discussing a variety of types of humor on different developmental levels, from slapstick to word play, this program improves participants’ abilities to connect and engage with others through the powerful tool of humor. 

More Information


About the Author

Chapter 1 About This Program
Intended Audience
Intended Participants
Benefits of the Program
Research-Based Strategies

Chapter 2 Background Information
Order of Lessons
Social-Emotional Development
Humor Development
Humor Use in Individuals With Developmental Disabilities
Teaching Humor

Chapter 3 Physical Comedy: Face and Body
Lesson 1: Funny Faces
Lesson 2: Funny Face Acting
Lesson 3: Funny Body

Chapter 4: Physical Comedy: Costumes and Impressions
Lesson 1: Funny Costumes
Lesson 2: Impressions

Chapter 5 Physical Comedy: Slapstick
Lesson 1: Introduction to Slapstick
Lesson 2: Messy Slapstick

Chapter 6 Incongruency
Lesson 1: Funny Animals
Lesson 2: Funny People
Lesson 3: Funny Sizes 

Chapter 7: Prank
Lesson 1: Food Pranks
Lesson 2: Water Pranks 
Lesson 3: Bug Pranks
Lesson 4: Gross Pranks 
Lesson 5: Money Pranks

Chapter 8: Sound and Word Play
Lesson 1: Sound Effects
Lesson 2: Rhyming Words 

Chapter 9: Jokes 
Lesson 1: Rhyming Jokes
Lesson 2: Homophone Jokes 
Lesson 3: Silly Sound Jokes
Lesson 4: Knock-Knock Jokes

Chapter 10: Three W Questions of Being Funny. 171
Lesson 1: What Is Funny?
Lesson 2: Who Can You Be Funny With?
Lesson 3: When Can You Be Funny?


About the Editors

Rachel Chaiet, MS, OTR/L is an occupational therapist from Bethel, New York who has worked with children and adolescents with developmental disabilities for over 10 years. She obtained her bachelor’s and master’s degree from Misericordia University in Dallas, Pennsylvania in 2010. She has presented at multiple conferences for the American Occupational Therapy Association, American Speech–Language–Hearing Association, and American Massage Therapy Association alongside her colleagues on humor-based interventions, as well as other interventions to address social participation for individuals with developmental disabilities. She has also published articles in OT Advance and OT Practice on various interventions related to improving social participation for this population. In her spare time, she can be found “clowning around” with her own young daughter, Mikaia, and husband, Max.