The Values of Off2Class – Humor

Off2Class values a sense of humor and the ability to make others smile and laugh. We are hilarious and we love a good joke. We know that happy people are healthy people. 


This ninth and final blog in our series exploring the company Values of Off2Class explores Humor. If you haven’t already done so, take a look at the previous blogs in this series for Entrepreneurship, Internationalism, Competitiveness, Progressiveness, Compassion, Inclusivity, Diversity and Sensitivity.

We all enjoy a good laugh, but why does Off2Class value Humor? After all, providing a quality product and being able to meet the needs of our users are serious issues. So, isn’t it the case that Humor ultimately detracts from the more pressing concerns of a company?

Well, Humor is, at its core, a form of communication. It builds stronger interpersonal relationships, increasing mutual understanding and making collaborations more effective. It creates an atmosphere in which people are able to breathe more easily, in contrast to the typical high-pressure environment found in some organizations. And it helps to make disagreements that little bit smoother to navigate if we don’t take ourselves quite so seriously all of the time. In this blog, we present some perspectives on Humor and its importance from members of the Off2Class team.

Humor and Off2Class

We’re serious about our business. We are serious in our aim to save teachers time and to make a product that both student and teacher love. However, as solemn and no-nonsense as we are about achieving our goals, as a team we recognize the importance of humor.

As the work environment goes remote and we both live and work more isolated than ever before, the risk of miscommunication has increased. Additionally, on the whole the media provides a rather doom-and-gloom view of today and the future, something that we as a company reject. The future is bright and full of possibilities, as much as it has always been. Humor is a great means by which to lighten the tone when work (and life) overwhelms us. While it may seem like an odd value for a company, I believe that a humorless workplace is one where people won’t stay long. We all need some extra endorphins from time to time.

James Heywood, Co-founder

I find humor (or humour for our UK audiences) is in two places. I love seeing bits of my colleagues’ personalities emerge– whether that’s Robert sharing his latest AI powerpoint via ChatGPT or Kris Jagasia dropping another hip-hop documentary for me to watch.

We are a language learning company and I find humor in the wonderful eccentricities and diversity of language. That might be the different terms used to describe items, the strange rules governing English or even etymology of certain words. James Heywood is a font of knowledge on this front!

A recent highlight was when Mike and Joe appeared on-screen, during our weekly team meeting, dressed as Santa Claus & Elf. It was a brilliant spark of color and made me chuckle.

Nathan, Team Member

At Off2Class, humor is an important aspect of workplace culture and is used to promote a positive and relaxed environment for employees. Humor helps to build camaraderie and boost morale among coworkers, reducing stress and increasing job satisfaction. The use of humor at Off2Class is not limited to casual conversations and water cooler moments, it is also incorporated into meetings and projects to lighten the mood and make work more enjoyable.

One day, during a team meeting, a developer made a sarcastic comment about a project that was taking longer than expected. Everyone in the meeting laughed and the mood lightened instantly. The team continued with the meeting, discussing solutions to the project’s challenges in a relaxed and collaborative manner. The developer’s comment had turned what could have been a tense and unproductive meeting into a productive and enjoyable one.

Possibly written with the help of chatGPT.

Robert, Team Member

Humor-focused lessons

The Off2Class Lesson Library contains over 1,200 lessons, covering all nine of the Off2Class Values. For our users wanting to explore lesson content related to Humor with their students, we suggest the following lessons:

S511 – National stereotypes (C1): A lot of humor has traditionally derived from stereotypes of different groups of people. However, while a good-natured joke making light of some quirk or other of a particular nationality can be an expression of friendship, stereotypes can undoubtedly be offensive and harmful. This advanced-level speaking lesson takes a look at national stereotypes, where they come from and when, if ever, they are a suitable topic for Humor.

ID20 – Idioms describing enthusiasm and motivation (B2): Idiomatic language is often a source of great amusement – and frustration – for language learners. Hold your horses! Have you got ants in your pants? A sense of Humor will be necessary for students in this lesson looking at common idioms for describing enthusiasm and motivation.

R121 – Things that annoy me (A2): A brother who is always biting his nails. A cousin who talks while she is eating. A barista at a coffee shop who smiles too much. We all have things that other people do that really get on our nerves. This elementary-level reading lesson takes a Humorous look at some of the annoyances of living in the modern world.

Over to you

We hope that you have enjoyed this look at the Off2Class Value of Sensitivity. As described, Sensitivity is a vital component of what makes Off2Class successful. We also know that Sensitivity is an important element of language classrooms everywhere and we would love to hear from you about this. What does Sensitivity mean to you? And how does Sensitivity inform your teaching? Please share your stories with us in the comments section or our official Off2Class Facebook group!

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