I went to a Catholic grade school, for grades 1-8.
I seem to recall that my first grade had 90 students and just one teacher, a nun. Talk about being a master of classroom management. But by the time we made it to eighth grade, we were down to just 15 students.
Since no one else seemed to want the role, I took on the position of class clown early on. I wasn’t the type of class clown that would perform outrageous antics, mine was a more subtle type of humor, making fun of people and situations, all for the sake of a laugh.
Imagine my surprise, and disappointment, then, while reading a recent study at StudyFinds: ‘Class clowns’ may also be the most intelligent students.
I was surprised that there would be such a connection, and then disappointed to realize it didn’t apply in my situation.
Here are some of the highlights of the study:
- While many may look at “class clowns” as immature and attention-seeking, a new study suggests strong humor skills during adolescence may be a sign of high intelligence.
- Researchers report children with higher than average levels of general knowledge and verbal reasoning tend to excel at humor.
- The same isn’t necessarily true for adults, however. Researchers didn’t find a similarly strong connection between humor and grown-up intelligence.
- When researchers compared intelligence and humor performance a clear pattern emerged. General intelligence highly correlated with humor. The study states that intelligence accounted for 68 percent of the observed difference in humor ability among the kids.
- Notably, study authors found children with both higher general knowledge and higher verbal reasoning to be funnier than their peers.
- Parents and teachers should be aware that if their children or students frequently make good quality humor, it is highly likely that they have extraordinary intelligence.”
So despite being the class clown, I don’t think I ever exhibited any signs of high intelligence. I still remember in first grade when some second graders promised me that there was a present in the bathroom for me, and then locked me in the bathroom. Why a bathroom would lock from the outside, I don’t know.
So if I wasn’t showing signs of high intelligence, I’m guessing I was more of the “immature and attention-seeking” type class-clown.
But I guess every research study has an outlier, and it looks like in this case that would be me.
I wonder if being a class clown in grade school had anything to do with me learning how to juggle in high school, wanting to go to clown school instead of college, and then performing as a clown as an adult.
I’m also wondering if maybe my class-clown act started to wear on my classmates, and may explain why my class went from 90 students to 15. If so, let me offer my apologies to my fellow classmates from those long-ago days.
But still, you’ll have to admit, making farting noises with your hands was, is, and always will be, funny…
*image from The Swaddle