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Fried Training Talk- Pandemic Humor

Published: Friday, August 21, 2020
Updated: Friday, August 21, 2020

Can we laugh during learning while enduring a Pandemic?

A co-worker pointed out to me that #FriedTrainingTalk is perfect for a Pan-demic. Which of course led me to discussing using puns and jokes in learning design (which used to be a pet peeve of an old boss of mine, even though I had research numbers that showed use of humor helped retention of knowledge).

In the past I’ve posted about the benefits and dangers of utilizing humor when designing learning. Is it possible that it is more dangerous today to use humor because the learners that “don’t get it” will be even more put off?

There are some really funny people in the Learning & Development world, like Clint Clarkson and Thomas Royce Wilson. Should they have to put those tools away for now, or are they needed more?

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What do you all think, is it appropriate to use humor for training in this serious time?

For non-existent bonus credits good until they expire in 2019, name one person in the Learning Development world that you think is really funny and see if we can get their reaction to this post.

3 Comments
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If one uses Humor and a portion of participants don't get it, whose fault is it? If we omit humor just because we think a group in the class won't get it, won't we be denying those who love humor?
I am one of those people who loves humor, and there are numbers to show humor in learning can help, what I worry about is how to use it in a time where so many are hurting, and at the same time so many need to laugh.
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I'm not sure using humor and having a part of the audience "Not Get It", is a problem. I think the problem occurs if the attempt at humor lessen the focus on the learning or in a worse case scenario disenfranchises the learner. For example, a Covid joke might be funny to many taking the course, but you could hurt the person who just lost a relative to Covid. Granted this is an extreme example.
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