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April Fool’s Day Pranks to Play on Your Kids

April Fool’s Day is all about harmless, silly fun. Kids love it because it’s a day when all sorts of strange and unexpected things might happen. When you get into the spirit as an adult, you might find that it’s fun for you, too! If you’re stumped on what April Fool’s pranks to pull, try these family-tested ideas.

Easy Does It

If you don’t have the bandwidth to set up a more a complex prank, do something simple yet effective. Leave the bathroom door ajar and balance a plastic cup of confetti on it. Pretend to leave for work sporting pajamas and bedhead. Superglue a quarter to your front sidewalk and watch your kids try to pick it up. Stick google eyes on everything in the fridge.

Food Fun

Before kids get up, switch the inner bags from all your cereal boxes, so everyone pours something different than what they expect. Serve Jell-O instead of juice in your kids’ glasses, and watch them try to drink it. (Vanilla pudding in lieu of milk also works!) Leave the wrapper on the cheese in a ham-and-cheese sandwich. Tuck a fake or gummy worm into the apple slices in their lunch box.

Prank Call

Fake a phone call from school first thing in the morning, before anyone realizes it’s April 1. Pretend that you’ve just heard school is closed indefinitely, that everyone is supposed to wear a snorkel today for a special event, or that your child is wanted in the principal’s office first thing.

New Driving Age

What tween or teen younger than sixteen doesn't fantasize about being able to drive? Tell your older kid (twelve to fifteen) that the law has changed ("Haven't you been paying attention to this?"). Offer some facts and new rules to make it believable. When your kiddo asks for the keys to the minivan, drop the bomb: "April Fools!"

Fake Bugs in Random Places

Give someone a scare by putting fake bugs around the house. Spiders in the bed, worms in the cereal, flies in the shower. They might not laugh, but you will!

Frozen Cereal and Milk

The night before, fill a bowl halfway with cereal and milk. Freeze it overnight and in the morning, add a little more cereal and milk. Watching your child or spouse bang their spoon on the frozen part in confusion will be worth the effort.

Dye the Milk

Add a few drops of food coloring to your milk container the night before. If you use plastic containers, pour milk into a pitcher and add coloring to that. What a surprise your kids will have in the morning when they pour or are served colorful milk in a glass or in cereal!

Cabinet Surprise

Get some balls, either tennis or rubber, and pile them into a cabinet that is frequently used. You'll need more than just a few to make this worthwhile. After they're loaded inside, close the cabinet tight and wait for your target to open the cabinet door. When he or she does, the balls will come tumbling out, creating quite the surprise! Be sure to work together to refill the cabinet with the balls for the next person.

Pranks Around the House

Try a few small, harmless pranks around the house that will have people doing double takes all day. Remove light bulbs from lamps, hide silverware, hide car keys, or short sheet beds.

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Topic(s): Holidays

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