Anyone knows that having a toddler around is the best thing for boosting your own confidence in your sense of humor; they laugh at just about anything silly! Be it sticking pretzel sticks under your front lip to make you look like a walrus or putting a napkin on your face and calling yourself “Mister Napkin Head,” they love to giggle.
What most parents don’t realize, however, is that their children are not born with a sense of humor; it’s their job to cultivate it and give their kids the chance and freedom to develop one.
It’s around 14 or 15 months when children begin to understand that a crazy face or illogical act is funny. Whenever you do something wacky that they’re sure isn’t supposed to happen, they find it absolutely hilarious – and it helps them feel comfortable with what they are sure about, too!
One thing they can’t resist is the element of surprise. Whether it’s an attack of tickles or a peekaboo, neither gets old. You can do it again and again and receive the same flood of laughter. Things, like banging a pillow on your head and pretending to collapse, are great as well!
Eventually, they begin to speak, and when their language skills are developed enough, they find rhymes and nonsensical words funny. As they grow, they also begin trying to make you laugh too, and it’s important that you pay attention and humor them.
Doing so isn’t hard, sometimes, because you’ll find they can be truly hilarious! But even when the jokes get old, don’t stop laughing and building your child’s confidence. You’ll even find them anticipating your jokes pretty soon.
Ways to get the funny bone going:
There are lots of ways that you can help your child grow up to have a sense of humor, and most of them come naturally. Here are a few of them:
- Make funny sounds with ordinary things. Maybe you’re just helping give them a bath or picking up the toys. Add a funny sound to go with it, and a boring activity turns into something fun!
- Ignore the obvious. Even when your child is standing directly in front of you, pretend you don’t see him and call out in search of him. Check everywhere! They can never resist it!
- Change it up. Try mixing up the normal routine – where things go or what should be done. Put your glasses on upside down, or try putting the stuffed bear away in the fridge, all the while with your toddler by your side.
Even if you don’t find yourself naturally funny, it’s important that you open up and laugh with your children. Just be playful, unexpected, and a bit silly. When your toddler is having fun, you are too, and vice versa.
The fact is that children with a well-developed sense of humor face life with more optimism, higher self-esteem, and more joy. They’re also better equipped to handle differences between them and others. So, you see, laughter is necessary, so go get your kids giggling!