There are few sounds as joyful as a child's laughter -- especially your child's laughter.
It's been said that people find things humorous that are unexpected. So, what's the best way to make your kids laugh? By surprising them!
Here are 5 surefire ways to coax those delightful giggles from your child:
I know this elicits laughs from experience. My kids were sitting in the family room playing a game that had outlasted its fun -- as was clear from the fact that they had started bickering with each other. Hearing the sounds of whining children from upstairs where I was putting away the laundry, I decided that instead of punishing, I would just vent my own frustration. Which is why I ran down the stairs screaming with my arms flailing. My kids' first reaction? Shocked faces as they looked at their mother's descent into lunacy. The next reaction? Uncontrollable laughter -- from all three of us!
2. Tickle fight!
Do you know why it doesn't feel ticklish when you tickle yourself? Because you're expecting it -- you know exactly where your fingers are as they zero in for that tickle. Tickle your kids, and they'll probably laugh. Let them tickle you, and they'll laugh even harder!
3. Answer with nonsense.
So one of your kids is having problems understanding a math problem, and you've been struggling to get her to understand for the last 20 interminable minutes. As the frustration mounts, it's clear that a new tactic is needed. Why not lighten the mood by babbling nonsense? Act completely serious as you try to explain the problem, but say things like, "Okay, you know how 2 plus 7 equals bananas? Well, that means that apples and marshmallows are 8,000 percent delicious." The juxtaposition between the completely straight-faced tone and the words coming out of your mouth will take your little one aback -- and then send him into gales of laughter.
4. Tell stupid jokes.
You know those ridiculous jokes your little kids tell that make absolutely no sense? You know, they go something like, "You have a spider on your head. April Fools!" (And then they repeat that same thing all day, thinking it's hilarious and expecting you to laugh every time.) Well, instead of giving your token, less-than-enthusiastic laugh, act like you think it's completely hilarious and giggle helplessly at the joke. Then, get into the act even more by telling a few of your own that make absolutely no sense!
5. Stage a competition.
Come on, you'r'e a parent -- you know the best way to get your kid to do something is to tell him not to, right? So, do just that -- have a no laughing contest. Stare at each other and dare not to laugh -- you'll both be rolling on the floor in no time!