15 Kid-Friendly April Fools' Day Pranks That Won't Cost You A Penny

April Fools' Day Pranks can be fun and achieved with just a little effort and no cost. Life can be so rushed and serious these days, it's great to take advantage of this time and just be silly. April Fools' Day pranks can also become a family tradition and you can try to one-up each other each year. Luckily there are tons of affordable kid-friendly April Fools Day pranks, that are guaranteed to psych the kids out, so you don't have to break the bank for a few laughs.

With just the right amount of clever and silly, your April Fools' Day pranks will be remembered by the kids for years. Many of them are food-related and can be used at breakfast, during school lunch, or at family dinner. If you pretend you don't even know it's April Fools' Day, the bedtime surprises will totally sneak up on them. Some of these require a little bit of planning, so don't leave the prank decision to the last minute. You can take these ideas and use them as a jumping off point to personalize them for your family. You know what makes them laugh better than anyone. Have fun and don't be afraid to push boundaries a bit — after all, it's April Fools' Day.


Clear Nail Polish On The Soap

Grab some clear nail polish and brush a layer over a bar of soap. Stand back and watch your kids try to work up a lather. They won't be able to!


Pin Holes In A Water Bottle

Take a needle and poke some tiny holes at the top of a in a half full water bottle. Leave it on the counter, but give it to your kids to drink. When they tip or squeeze the bottle, it'll squirt water from the holes.


Everything's Upside Down

Courtesy of Shari Maurer

After the kids go to sleep the night before, take all of your photos and turn them upside down. See if the kids notice...


Snack Switch

If you send your kids to school with lunch, take a chip bag, carefully open it at the bottom and then replace the contents with something entirely different, like carrot sticks or sugar snap peas. Tape the bag shut and put it in their lunchbox.

Similar to this, you can switch out the bags of two boxes of cereal. When they pour the Fruit Loops, out will come the Bran Flakes.


Cling Wrap on Toilet Bowl

An oldie but a goodie: Lift the toilet seat. Put a clear layer of cling wrap over the bowl, place the seat back down and wait for someone to go to the bathroom. This could get messy and kind of gross, but a joke's a joke.

Feel free to use the cling wrap creatively in any way you see fit. You'll realize it can be quite versatile.


Floating Message

Courtesy of Shari Maurer

Write a funny message ("Help me!") in permanent marker on toilet paper and float it in the toilet bowl. On a similar note, you can write a whole bunch of things ("Don't use me to wipe your butt") ("I feel kind of crappy") on the toilet paper and then roll it back up. The kids will get a message each time they go to the bathroom.


Change All The Clocks

Do a kind of "Daylight Savings Time" thing and wake your kids up an hour early in the morning. After they are all showered and ready for the day's adventure, reveal the prank (and let them go back to sleep for another hour!).


Frozen Cereal And Milk

Before you go to bed at night, pour a bowl of cereal and milk. Put the spoon in it and put the entire bowl in the freezer. In the morning, sprinkle a little bit of fresh cereal on top and serve it to them for breakfast. See what happens when they try to eat the cereal.


Meatloaf Cupcakes

Instead of serving meatloaf and mashed potatoes side by side on a plate for dinner, bake the meatloaf in a muffin cup and "frost" the top with mashed potatoes. Offer your kids "dessert" first and watch their reaction.


Put A Sign On The Back Of Your Car

Sticking a "kick-me" sign on your kids' back before they leave the house feels kind of mean, but you can put one on your car and freak the kids out in a different way. The sign can tell people to honk twice or tell them to drive by and wave at your kid. If it happens once, they might not think anything of it, but if it keeps happening, it could be a funny, confusing prank.


Put Your Clothes On Backward

Then continue the theme by walking around the house backward, too.

Variation: swap clothes with your partner. Or if you leave your kids' clothes out for them in the morning, give them each others' clothes. Really want to make an effort? Switch around all your kids' drawers while they're away or asleep... Yeah, that one might just be too much work.


Unplug The TV

Or the XBox. Watch them try to turn it on with their remote or by pushing the button. Watch them get frustrated when they can't.


Swap The Ketchup And The Mustard

Put the mustard in the ketchup container and vice versa. This also works with salt and pepper.


Swap Roles

If mom usually wakes the kids up, let dad do it but pretend he's mom. You can also pull this prank at dinner and have a whole conversation in the reverse roles.


Uncomfortable Pillow Cases

Psych them out at bedtime by putting toys, blocks, balloons, or socks— anything that is not their pillow (and won't hurt them). They'll be tired ready to go to bed, put their heads on their pillow expecting something soft, then realize it isn't.

Of course, you could also sabotage bedtime the old-fashioned way and just short sheet their beds so that they can't get their whole bodies under the covers.

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