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16 Family-friendly April Fools' Pranks To Pull This Year

As April Fools' Day draws near, many are on the lookout for the best April Fools' pranks to strike the perfect balance between fun and family-friendly. This tradition, rooted in jest and joy, offers a unique opportunity to engage in humorous antics that lead to a good laugh without crossing the line.

Finding the right funny pranks that get the entire family chuckling can be a delightful challenge. Our carefully chosen ideas aim to ensure that your pranks contribute to a day filled with laughter, bonding and the kind of joy that April Fools' Day is all about — not hurt feelings or lingering grudges.

Let the pranking begin!

1. Swap Sleepers

Start April Fools' Day with this prank that's not only simple but bound to create a moment of bewilderment (followed by laughter). This prank is especially great for younger children and is most effective if your kids are heavy sleepers.

The idea is to carefully carry your kid into their sibling's bed while they're asleep. Imagine their surprise when they wake up in a different room! It's a gentle yet amusing way to kick off the day.

To pull this off seamlessly, make sure to do the swap late at night or early in the morning, before the kids usually wake up. This ensures that they're deep in sleep and won't notice the change until the morning light reveals the switch.

2. Early Wake-up Call

Another great early morning prank that plays on the concept of time itself involves a bit of tampering with your kid's clock. By setting their clock a couple of hours forward, you can create a scenario where they think they're waking up at their usual time, but in reality, they're up much earlier.

This prank is perfect for introducing a bit of harmless chaos into their morning routine — well, harmless as long as they're able to fall back asleep after the false alarm.

The key here is to adjust the clock after they've fallen asleep and to be ready to manage their surprise once they think the day is starting earlier than expected.

3. Frozen Breakfast Surprise

An early morning prank that'll get some laughs from the whole family involves a classic breakfast staple: a bowl of cereal. But here's the twist: Freeze the bowl of cereal overnight.

This sets the stage for when your hungry kids sit down to eat and find themselves perplexed, trying to dig into their solidified breakfast. The look of surprise and confusion as they attempt to scoop up a bite is priceless, making it a memorable way to start the day.

Be sure to have a real, edible breakfast on hand to satisfy their appetites after the initial amusement has passed.

4. Colorful Surprise

April Fools' Day is the perfect opportunity to add a burst of color and surprise to the morning routine.

By choosing to fill your child's closet or dresser drawers with balloons, you're setting the stage for an unforgettable moment. When they go to pick out their outfit for the day, they'll be welcomed with a colorful surprise that's sure to bring out the best April Fools' laugh.

The simplicity of the setup and the visual impact makes this one of the most effective ways to ensure the day starts on a light-hearted note. Plus, it's a wonderful way to remind your family of the importance of joy and not taking life too seriously, all in the spirit of April Fools' Day.

5. Family Photo Swap

One of the more creative April Fools' Day pranks involves a bit of redecorating that's sure to catch your family off-guard and provoke laughter.

The premise is simple yet effective: Replace all your framed family photos with pictures of your favorite movie stars, your kids' favorite TV show characters or anything else you think will make them laugh.

This playful switch not only creates a moment of confusion but also a memorable laugh when they finally notice the celebrities "joining" your family. It's a great way to incorporate humor and a touch of the unexpected into your home décor, even if it's just for a day.

6. Bubble Wrap Prank

For a prank that guarantees an element of surprise and a burst of laughter, consider the bubble wrap prank, a simple yet effective way to catch your family off guard. The idea is to put bubble wrap under areas where your family frequently walks, such as the living room carpet, the bathmat, or an area rug.

The unsuspecting family members will step on the concealed bubble wrap, triggering a series of pops that's sure to startle and amuse them. It's a harmless yet hilarious way to add a bit of excitement to your family's day. The anticipation of waiting to see who will step on it first adds to the fun!

7. Too-tiny Shoes

This is a prank that combines simplicity with a touch of bewilderment and is sure to elicit some priceless reactions. The premise involves a playful illusion. Stuff your kid's shoes with cotton balls or tissue paper, creating a scenario where their feet suddenly seem too large for their favorite footwear.

The moment of realization, when they discover their feet don't fit into "their" shoes, is where the fun lies. This prank plays on the common fear of outgrowing beloved items overnight, turning it into a humorous situation that's both relatable and absurd.

Note that this prank is most practical if your child has a sibling or other younger relative who can actually wear the small shoes after the fun and games are over.

8. Toilet Paper Messages

This is one of those wholesome pranks that not only surprises but also delivers a good chuckle in an unexpected place.

Write a funny message on the toilet paper and carefully roll it back up, ensuring the message is hidden until someone uses it. Wait to see who ends up reading your message and enjoy the reactions as each family member encounters these unexpected notes.

For example, you could write, "Congrats! You've reached the next level of Toilet Paper Unrolling!" or "Warning: This roll is self-destructing in 3... 2... 1..." These lighthearted jokes are not only a fun way to engage your family but also add a touch of creativity to your April Fools' Day pranks.

9. Fake Cake Pop Prank

This prank takes the expectation of a sweet treat and turns it into a playful culinary twist, perfect for April Fools' Day and especially fun for younger kids.

The trick is to create what appears to be a delectable batch of cake pops but with a sneaky substitution. Instead of cake, use Brussels sprouts on candy sticks and meticulously cover them in chocolate.

At first glance, these faux confections promise a delightful bite, but when your family bites into them, they'll have quite the surprise awaiting them. However, pranks are best when they end on a sweet note, so to avoid too much disappointment, be sure to make a batch of real treats to enjoy after the initial jest.

10. Fake Brownies

In the spirit of playful deception and culinary puns, the fake brownies prank promises to deliver a good-hearted laugh, much like the fake cake pop prank. This time, the jest involves a visual and verbal pun.

Cut out a bunch of letter E's from brown construction paper and meticulously place them on a plate, covering them with foil as if hiding a freshly baked treat. When you tell your children that you've made "brownies," their anticipation will build up to the moment they lift the foil, only to find brown letter E's instead of the chocolaty dessert they were expecting.

Like the fake cake pop prank, it's a good idea to also make a real batch of brownies to serve after the initial jest to not only soften the blow of the prank but also turn the experience into a sweet memory, literally and figuratively.

11. Jell-O Surprise

For a truly unexpected twist at snack time, this prank turns a regular beverage break into an amusing moment of realization. To pull off this prank, make a batch of Jell-O that resembles the color of your kid's favorite juice, carefully pouring it into clear drinking glasses to maintain the illusion of a typical drink.

Don't forget to toss in a straw for the full effect and let it sit until it's firmly set. When your children go to take a drink, they'll find themselves puzzled by the solidified contents of their "beverage."

12. Drink Surprise

Another fun April Fools' joke your kids will love involves a little culinary creativity with their morning beverages. By adding a few drops of food coloring to an opaque drink carton (like one for orange juice or milk) you can set the stage for an eye-opening surprise.

This simple alteration does not change the taste but will definitely astonish anyone expecting the familiar color of their favorite drink.

Imagine the puzzled look on their faces when they pour themselves a glass of milk, only to find it's turned an unusual shade of green, or their orange juice suddenly appears blue.

13. Bug Surprise

Add a few plastic bugs to your ice cube trays before freezing. For an added touch of realism, to get clearer ice cubes, use hot water or almost boiling water, which helps to freeze the bugs in a way that makes them look surprisingly real at a glance.

The surprise will be priceless when your kids reach for some ice to cool down their drink, only to discover creepy crawlies entombed within the cubes! It's a simple yet effective method to ensure that the day is filled with unexpected discoveries and plenty of giggles.

14. Cupcakes for Dinner

Want to be the absolute coolest parent? Tell your kids you're having cupcakes for dinner! But the trick is you're not serving the sweet kind.

Prepare your favorite meatloaf recipe and divide the mixture into a muffin tin. While the mini meatloaves are baking, whip up some mashed potatoes. After cooking, top the meatloaf muffins with a creamy mashed potato "frosting."

Your kids might not think you're the coolest after biting into their "cupcakes" but it'll still surely be delicious.

15. Whoopee Cushions

An oldie but a goodie, the classic prank of putting whoopee cushions under your couch pillows never fails to deliver all the laughs and keep the April Fools' Day spirit alive. This timeless joke relies on the simple joy of surprise, making it a favorite for pranksters of all ages.

The setup is straightforward. Strategically place whoopee cushions beneath the pillows on your couch. Then, wait for the moment someone sits down, unknowingly triggering a burst of hilarious sounds.

16. Short Sheet Bed Prank

If your kids thought April Fools' Day would be over by bedtime, they better think again. The short sheet bed prank is another oldie but goodie and targets the unsuspecting victim's bed for a night of harmless confusion.

To set up this prank on your kid's bed, take the flat sheet and fold it in half horizontally, but instead of laying it flat, tuck the bottom end under the mattress as if it were the bottom of the sheet. When your child tries to get into bed, they'll find themselves unable to stretch their legs out fully, thanks to the sheet being folded up nearer than expected.

We created this article in conjunction with AI technology, then made sure it was fact-checked and edited by a HowStuffWorks editor.

Original article: 16 Family-friendly April Fools' Pranks To Pull This Year

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