Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Using Humor for Comprehension: Funny Headlines

AVKO believes very strongly in using supplemental and humorous materials to improve on and even verify reading comprehension. Using funny materials like cartoons, comics, joke books, puns, etc. are great exercises because the students won't resist them as much, but you can also instantly gauge whether or not it was understood by their reactions (groans, furrowed brow, snort, chortle). This is much easier on the teacher and the student as opposed to doing boring comprehension questions after a text. And, if the questions are multiple choice, there's a good chance that they could get the answer correctly without truly understanding the text, or even the question.

Here are some funny headlines that can be used as such exercises [author unknown; from an e-mail forward]:
  • Something Went Wrong in Jet Crash, Expert Says
  • Police Begin Campaign to Run Down Jaywalkers
  • Panda Mating Fails; Veterinarian Takes Over
  • Miners Refuse to Work after Death
  • Juvenile Court to Try Shooting Defendant
  • War Dims Hope for Peace
  • If Strike Isn't Settled Quickly, It May Last Awhile
  • Cold Wave Linked to Temperatures
  • Enfield (London) Couple Slain; Police Suspect Homicide
  • Red Tape Holds Up New Bridges
  • Man Struck By Lightning: Faces Battery Charge
  • New Study of Obesity Looks for Larger Test Group
  • Astronaut Takes Blame for Gas in Spacecraft
  • Kids Make Nutritious Snacks
  • Local High School Dropouts Cut in Half
  • Hospitals are Sued by 7 Foot Doctors
  • Typhoon Rips Through Cemetery; Hundreds Dead
Also check out Jay Leno's Headlines for more great headlines and AVKO's Readings for Comprehension.

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