What is April Fools’ Day?

What is April Fools’ Day?

The first day of April is a day to watch out for. Although not a national holiday, it is widely celebrated as April Fools’ Day or All Fools’ Day. Kids can join in the fun by playing silly jokes on friends and family, as long as everything is done in good spirit! Tricks like placing a bowl of cereal and milk in the freezer then serving it to someone for breakfast are things even small children can do, and can be funny for everyone involved.

What is April Fools’ Day? Resource Handout for Classroom or Homeschool: Just $2.00

April Fools4 stars

Did you know that until our current Gregorian calendar was introduced, New Year's was celebrated during the week of March 25 to April 1? In 1582, the new calendar moved it to January 1. Some people didn't like this change and they "refused to acknowledge [it] and continued to celebrate on April 1." The people who did accept the change played jokes on the people who didn't, like inviting them to nonexistent parties and pinning paper fish to their backs. If you want more than just a history, check out the links to different funny pranks to play listed on the left-hand side of the screen.

April Fools.com4 stars

Did you miss some of the great online pranks of years gone by? No worries, here at AprilFools.com you can peruse a collection of past pranks from brands such as Google, YouTube and Nike. Laugh along at how in 2010, Google's Gmail ran out of vowels and the entire website was written only in consonants! Follow the links in the left-hand menu to read about fake news headlines that really fooled people, and ideas for harmless pranks for both kids and adults.

Infoplease: April Fools' Day: Origin and History5 stars

Celebrating spring with a day of fun and foolishness is almost universal. "The Romans had a festival named Hilaria on March 25, rejoicing in the resurrection of Attis. The Hindu calendar has Holi, and the Jewish calendar has Purim." Even though the origins of April Fools' Day itself may be unclear, what is certain is that something silly is in the air in the springtime. Visit Infoplease to explore more theories about the origins of April Fools' Day and check out the "Related Links" section to learn more about hoaxes, phobias, and calendar changes.

Museum of Hoaxes: Top 100 April Fools' Day Hoaxes5 stars

This virtual museum exhibit from the Museum of Hoaxes in San Diego, California brings to life the top 100 April Fools' Day Hoaxes of all time. The museum curator, Alex (no last name given) says, "This list is easily the most popular article I've ever posted on the Museum of Hoaxes. Extracts from it (some attributed, some not) can be found on hundreds of other websites." For more laughs, click over to the Top Ten Worst April Fool's Day Hoaxes ever, and peruse the archives, which go back hundreds of years.

Snopes: April Fools' Day Origins5 stars

Snopes.com is a website famous for reporting on rumors and specifying whether they are true or not. Aside from simply answering the question of how April Fools' Day started, Snopes lists numerous famous (or infamous) pranks as examples. The article is followed by a list of sources for those wanting to do more research. "In Scotland, an April fool is called an April gowk, Scottish for cuckoo, an emblem of simpletons. In England, a fool is called a gob, gawby or gobby."

What is April Fools’ Day? Resource Handout for Classroom or Homeschool: Just $2.00

Honorable Mentions

The following links are either new discoveries or sites that didn't make it into my newspaper column because of space constraints. Enjoy!

About.com: April Fools' Day History

Family Fun: Printable Pranks for April Fools'


Wilstar: April Fools' Day

Cite This Page

Feldman, Barbara. "What is April Fools’ Day?." Surfnetkids. Feldman Publishing. 27 Mar. 2012. Web. 27 Aug. 2015. <http://www.surfnetkids.com/resources/what-is-april-fools-day/ >.

About This Page

By . Originally published March 27, 2012. Last modified March 27, 2012.

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