Posted by: jockmackenzie | July 21, 2009

Speaking – Joke Telling #1

P1240001WITH EACH “JOKE TELLING” ENTRY, I AM INCLUDING A PICTURE FROM MY COLLECTION OF SIGNS OR SCENES THAT STRUCK MY FUNNY BONE. THIS IS AN ACTUAL STOP SIGN AT THE EXIT FROM SPRUCE MEADOWS NEAR CALGARY. SPRUCE MEADOWS IS A HUGE COMPLEX WHERE HORSES FROM AROUND THE WORLD COMPETE IN SHOW JUMPING.

Students, like so many adults, are afraid of speaking in public. Following my “small steps” philosophy, I try to get kids to “speak” without seeing it as “public speaking” or “making a speech.” (see the blog entries of May 1 and 29) Having them tell jokes is another subtle method. Over the next few weeks I will supply what I deem to be “student friendly” jokes – and later I will explain the do’s and don’t’s that have made joke telling successful in my middle school classes. Here are a few:

A worker in a chocolate factory fell into a huge vat of chocolate. No one was nearby so he began yelling, “FIRE! FIRE!” Eventually a fellow worker came to his aid and pulled him to safety.
His rescuer asked, “Why were you yelling, ‘FIRE!’?”
The chocolate-dipped employee replied, “I didn’t think anybody would come if I yelled, ‘CHOCOLATE!’”

A golfer hit a wicked slice on a hole that was adjacent to a highway. The golf ball hit the windshield of a police car that was parked by the roadside to catch speeders. The policeman leapt from his cruiser, marched onto the golf course, and accosted the golfer. “And just what do you plan to do about that?” the policeman demanded.
The golfer replied, “I think I should loosen my grip slightly and turn my right hand over just a bit.”

A prison story: A young man committed a crime and was sentenced to life imprisonment. When he was out in the yard, on his first day at the big house, he was surprised to hear inmates occasionally call out a number, each time a different one. Invariably, the inmates would laugh, chuckle, or at least snicker. That evening, in his cell, the young man asked his cellmate about the number calling. The seasoned convict explained that because so many of the inmates were also serving life sentences and had been imprisoned for so long a time, that they had numbered all of the jokes. As in life everywhere, the new kid just wanted to fit in. Studiously, he learned all of the jokes and memorized their corresponding numbers. With great anticipation, he awaited the day when he would call out a number in the yard. His day came. He called out his favorite number. No response. He waited a while. He called out another number. No response. After his third failed attempt, he gave up. Upon returning to his cell that evening, he asked his cellmate what had gone wrong. The wily old veteran replied, “Some people just can’t tell a joke.”


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