Fun and Games For April Fool’s Day!

On April 1st the joke’s on all of us because… it’s April Fool’s Day!

Get your joke book out, plan your pratfalls and pranks, because April Fool’s Day is the day once a year to celebrate and play good-spirited tricks on friends and family. Despite its worldwide popularity, this holiday has a long history with somewhat unknown origins. One of the earliest possible explanations goes all the way back to 1508, in which French Poet Eloy d’Amerval referred to a “poisson d’avril” or “April Fool,” though translated literally it means “April’s Fish.” Another early account from as far back as the Middle Ages relates the European shift to using the Gregorian calendar to this knee-slapping holiday. For many people, the new year began with the spring equinox around April 1st. After this changed to the New Year we now know on January 1st, people still celebrating New Year’s Eve in the springtime were teased for being an “April Fool.”

However this silly, hoax-filled holiday got its start it’s a great excuse to act foolish and burst out in belly laughs. Keep scrolling for videos, activities, crafts & more to celebrate April Fool’s Day! We hope they tickle your funny bone.

The Science of Funny

Why Being Funny is Good for Your Family

Grades PreK and Up
Joking around with your kids can benefit nearly every aspect of their development. Here are some tips to tickle your kid’s funny bone and crack them up at every age.

NOVA scienceNOW | Hippocampus Humor: Comic Science

Grades 6-8
Learn about the hippocampus, a part of the brain that stores memories, in this video from the Comic Science series of NOVA scienceNOW. And learn a nerdy hippocampus joke, too!

Why Are Some People So Easily Fooled? | BrainCraft

Grades 6-12
Are you easily fooled? In this episode of BrainCraft, we look at how people fall for April Fool’s pranks.

Activities, Crafts & More

Five Fun Food Ideas for April Fool’s Day

All Ages
Check out these tasty illusions and foolish foods from around the web to get the whole family laughing!

Make a Silly Folded Picture

Grades PreK-K
In this activity, your child can practice cooperation skills. They’ll need at least one other player — but the silly drawing is more fun with more people! Before you play, listen and sing together Daniel’s song, “If you can’t do it alone, work together.”

Best April Fool’s Day Books for Little Pranksters

Grades PreK-6
Read ’em and weep… from laughing so hard! Celebrate April Fool’s Day with this list of books compiled by PBS Kids for Parents with some of their favorite funny pages from harmless joke and prank books to sweet stories and the history of the holiday.

Craft Spring-y Flowers

Grades K-3
Make spring-y flowers (paper flowers on a SPRING) and gift them to teachers and friends, decorate your table with them or tuck them into a box and surprise someone for April Fool’s Day.

Laugh-o-Graph – The Electric Company | PBS KIDS Lab

Grades 1-3
Create a laugh graph to rate your child’s favorite jokes and figure out which one is the funniest. This activity from The Electric Company will help children master graphing, data collection, and analysis.

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