Laughter: the best medicine

There are many documented reasons why humour and laughter is good for all of us. From a speech and language perspective, SLP’s use humour to establish rapport and reduce tension, model it as a means for social interactions, build confidence and to teach multiple meanings, to name a few. When I first begin working with a child, I like to use humour to connect with them and to establish trust. Plus, it makes sessions a lot more fun! If I’m not having fun during a session, then a child probably won’t either.

A couple of years ago I worked on a short term contract in Northern BC as a speech pathologist to help children and families that were on a very long wait list until they found a full time SLP to add to their team. One day, while I was working on lesson planning and documentation between seeing children, I noticed a couple of costumes (one in red, the other in blue) in the corner of the room that caught my eye. I discovered that the staff used these costumes (Elmo and Cookie Monster, naturally!) during community and educational events. Of course, I had to try one on! When would I ever get another chance to dress up as Elmo?

One of the reasons I love working with this age group is that I get to see the wonder of the world through a child’s eyes again and again. It forces you to take off your adult filter and see things in a fresh way... to hear, be reminded of and consider things through the beautiful eyes, sounds, words, and smiles of a child. Who wouldn’t want to be part of that?


Valerie Cundiff, M.S. SLP (R)

Registered Speech Language Pathologist with the College of Speech and Hearing Health Professions of BC (CSHBC)




office: 354 Tempe Crescent, North Vancouver, BC V7N1E6

phone: 778 867-0395

Any unresolved concerns about my practice may be reported to the CSHBC, 900-200 Granville Street, Vancouver, BC V6C 1S4  |  |  604 742-6380

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