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15 Fun (and Harmless) April Fools’ Pranks for Kids

On April 1st, everyone can be pranked! These easy April Fools’ pranks for kids are harmless, but make the whole family laugh.

Kids playing an April Fools Day prankImgorthand/Getty Images

April Fools’ pranks for kids

April Fools’ Day is coming up, and it’s the perfect time to lighten the mood with some harmless, yet hilarious April Fools’ pranks for kids. Remember, April Fools’ Day lasts for 24 hours, so you can have a full day of pranks planned for your kids that will keep them guessing. But if you can dish it out, you can definitely take it too, so tread carefully—kids might just get in on the pranking game with some April Fools’ pranks to play on your parents. We prefer the jokes and japes that have everyone crying with laughter (rather than just crying), so these are all silly, memory-making high jinks that will get the whole family cackling, no matter who is on the receiving end! For even more prank-tastic inspiration (and even more April Fools’ pranks for kids) see these 40 funny April Fools’ pranks to pull this year. Now go forth, and prank!

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1. Make a move while they sleep

This April Fools’ prank is perfect for kids who are heavy sleepers. Sneak in during the night and shuffle their furniture around, change out their comforter—or even swap your kids from one bed to another. They’ll wake up wondering what exactly happened while they were snoozing! Check out these April Fools’ pranks that went horribly wrong.

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2. Turn their milk blue

Have some Star Wars fans in your family? Tell them that you got them some extra-special milk direct from Tatooine! This is easy April Fools’ prank for kids is perfect for those who drink milk or eat cereal every morning. Simply put a few drops of blue food coloring into your milk carton, shake it up, then pour. (You get bonus points if you make some Star Wars-themed labeling to glue onto your milk carton.) For more laughs check out these short jokes.

grapes. April fools pranks for kidsSuthat Chaithaweesap/Shutterstock

3. Let the Easter Bunny play jokester

April Fools’ Day is close to Easter Sunday this year (Easter lands on Sunday, April 4, 2021). It’s the perfect opportunity to let your Easter Bunny have a little fun in your kids’ baskets. Carefully unpeel the foil from those foil-wrapped chocolate eggs, then reuse the wrap to cover individual grapes for a sweet (and silly) surprise. This is where the Easter Bunny came from.

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4. Give them a little bathroom reading

This is one of the easy April Fools’ pranks for kids that is low effort with big laughs. Unroll your toilet paper a bit, then use a Sharpie to write a funny joke or “Happy April Fools’ Day” on the TP. Roll it back up, and wait to see who uncovers your surprise. Check out the craziest April Fools’ pranks in history.

child eating cereal. April fools pranksLightField Studios/shutterstock

5. Swap out their breakfast cereal

This is the perfect April Fools’ prank for kids who love their favorite cereal. Trick your kids into eating a healthier cereal (or surprise them with a usually off-limits sugary kind). Simply swap the bags between two cereal boxes, and see how long it takes for your kids to realize that they’re pouring something different into their cereal bowls. Your favorite fast-food chains also get in on the pranking action!

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6. Set up a balloon surprise

“Wow” them when they wake up in the morning—this is a great April Fools’ prank for kids who love fun surprises. Use painter’s tape to attach several wide pieces of plastic wrap across your child’s door, and fill the pocket it creates with inflated balloons. When your child opens their door in the morning, a huge balloon explosion will greet them. Check out these funny Facebook pranks.

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7. Serve a foolish meal

Faux foods have become a delicious way to celebrate April Fools. This is an easy April Fools’ prank for kids that will make the whole family laugh at the dinner table. Serve half of a canned peach atop a flat circle of vanilla yogurt to create a fake fried egg in the morning. (You can serve that with cinnamon-sprinkled apple faux fries.) For dinner, make meatloaf and separate it into cupcake tins, and frost the “cupcakes” with mashed potato frosting as a special “dessert for dinner.” And for dessert? Try “grilled cheese” made with slices of pound cake as the bread and gooey yellow frosting in lieu of cheese. The kids’ “juice” can be jello refrigerated in glasses, with straws embedded for an extra realistic touch. These April Fools’ jokes will make everyone laugh.

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8. Create a crazy candy mix

This fun April Fools’ prank for kids is perfect for those who eat candy by the handful (or who wish they could). Trick them with a seemingly appetizing candy dish—but mix together Skittles, Reeses Pieces, and M&Ms in it. That first handful of candy will definitely taste a little… ahem… unusual. Odds are, they’ll probably pick through it a little more carefully after that. Since it’s close to Easter, make sure you avoid the Easter candies everyone secretly hates.

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9. Let them have a crazy “growth spurt”

The night before April Fools’ Day, serve them a healthy dish (try broccoli or Brussels sprouts), and let them know that they’ll probably grow quite a bit as a result. This easy April Fools’ prank is perfect for kids who hate to eat their vegetables. Then stuff a few tissues into the toes of their shoes, and perhaps lay out a few a size-too-small clothes for them. The next morning, they won’t believe how giant they’ve become. (And maybe, you’ll be able to get them to eat broccoli more often!) These are the most shocking pranks in history.

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10. Share some “brown Es”

Cut several “Es” out of brown construction paper and put them in a 9×13 pan and cover it with foil. Tell your kids you made a batch of “brownies” for them, and watch as they get tricked when they open the foil. (You might want to have a real batch of brownies waiting in the wings.)

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11. Spring forward—again!

This is an easy April Fools’ prank for kids that can actually be played year-round. After your kids are asleep, set the clocks forward yet another hour—then wake them up by announcing that you’re all late for a very important date! See how quickly they scramble (and how long it takes before they realize the correct time). Keep the laughs going with these April Fools’ Day memes.

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12. “Freeze” their technology

Take a screenshot of their smartphone or computer screens, and leave the image open or turn it into their screen saver. This easy April Fools’ prank is great for kids who are addicted to their phones. Let them freak out for a few minutes as they think their screen is frozen before you come in to save the day. Here are some more computer pranks for April Fools’ Day.

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13. Have them plant some “doughnut seeds”

You’ve probably heard of the famous April Fools’ joke regarding spaghetti trees. This one is equally fun. Make a fake label with pictures of doughnuts, and glue it onto an envelope stuffed with Cheerios. Tell them you got them a package of doughnut seeds, and see if they take the bait—and if they start planting them!

carrots. April fools pranks for kidsDJM-photo/shutterstock

14. Swap out their snack food

Carefully open a bag of Cheetos, and swap out that cheesy snack with some healthier baby carrots. Reseal, and watch for the inevitable surprise. (You could even play it off as a new, healthier formulation of Cheetos—or a special treat that the Easter Bunny shared!) Try these April Fools’ pranks for the office.

April fools pranks for kids. strawberries with eyesjack1986/shutterstock

15. Create some “see” food

Put eyes on your food and ask the kids if they like seafood (“see” food). Glue googly eyes onto your milk cartons or pickle jars, or paste edible sugar eyes on fruit and other treats (you can use a little dab of gel frosting to adhere them). Draw silly faces on your eggs with a magic marker. Now, check out these hilarious text pranks to pull on your friends.