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APRIL FOOLS' DAY

FUNNY ANIMALS
Cut animal pictures out of magazines and then cut them in-half.
Glue each animal half to a separate sheet of construction paper.
Give each of your children one of the papers and have them use crayons or markers to complete their animals.
Encourage children to use their imaginations to make their animals as funny as possible.
When they are finished, let children name their animals.

 
MYSTERY PICTURES
Give each of your children a sheet of white construction paper and a white crayon.
Have the children draw designs or pictures on their papers, pressing down hard with their crayons. 
Set out a paint wash (1 part tempera paint to 3 parts water) and paintbrushes.
Let your children brush the paint wash over their papers to reveal their mystery pictures.
Variation:  Have children switch pictures before painting on wash.
Variation:  For very young children, draw the white pictures for your child to paint.

 
APRIL FOOLS’ DAY PAINT
Secretly color vanilla pudding red (or any bright color) by stirring in drops of food coloring.
Tell your children that you have some new finger paint for her to try.
Have her wash her hands, then place a spoonful of the red pudding on a large piece of white paper.
Invite your child to finger-paint designs with the paint.
When she discovers that the paint is really pudding, enjoy the rest of the sweet April Fools' Day joke together
 
SILLY PICTURES
Invite your child to cut several pictures of people and other things out of magazines or catalogs.
Encourage him to cut up the pictures and arrange the pieces on paper in silly ways, such as shoes on top of a person’s head or flowers growing out of a TV.
When he is satisfied with his arrangement, have him glue the pieces in place to create a silly picture for April Fools’ Day.
 
GAMES
 
WHAT’S DIFFERENT
The night before April Fool’s Day, rearrange your room.
Make some changes very noticeable, like a table in a different place, mixing up name cards, or moving the dramatic play area to a different corner.
Make other less noticeable changes as well, such as switching the crayons and the markers, putting the books on a different shelf, or putting the wrong pieces in a puzzle box.
 
Let your children help you make a list of all the things that are different.
Have children help you add to the list as they notice more things all through the day.
 
UPSIDE DOWN AND TURNED AROUND
Plan simple games such as these for your child to enjoy.
Turn a few objects up-side-down, such as an empty wastebasket, a plastic cup and a small stool.  Ask your child to search for the objects and turn them right side up.
Arrange several objects backward, such as a TV with its face to a wall, a chair with its back to a table, and books with spines facing the back of a bookshelf.  Can your children find the backward objects?
Play turn-around tricks, such as making a bed with the pillows at the foot instead of the head, or changing the usual seating arrangement around your dining table.
  
JUST FOR FUN
 
APRIL FOOLS’ DAY DRESS-UP
Celebrate the day with your child by trying one or more of these ideas.
Wear an item of clothing backwards.
Put on socks or shoes that don’t match.
Using baby clothes, dress a doll or stuffed animal in silly ways.
 
WHAT’S FUNNY
Use this day to talk about what is funny and what’s hurtful.
Brainstorm funny tricks your children could play on their family, such as (with mom or dad help) adding a few drops of food coloring to milk, or sprinkling a few cereal pieces in between the sheets or a crunchy nighttime surprise.
 
LANGUAGE
 
TRUE OR FALSE STORIES
Make up short stories to tell your children.
Have children tell you if they think the story is true or false.
Eventually have your children take turns telling their own stories.
 
JOKE TIME
Share some funny stories with your children.

For inspiration, look for kids’ joke books or use some of the following:

Q:  What do you call a dog with no tail?
A:  A hot dog!

Q:  Where do sheep get their hair cut?
A:  At the baa-baa shop!

Q:  Why is six afraid of seven?
A:  Because seven ate nine!

Q:  Why did the elephant sit on a marshmellow?
A:  To keep from falling into the hot chocolate!

 
APRIL FOOLS’ DAY TALK
Take turns with your child making up silly sentences like these.  Don’t forget to say “April Fool!” after each one.
I saw a fish swimming in a tree.
Summer is fun because we can make lots of snowballs.
Dad likes to wash his pickup in the bathtub.
 
MUSIC
  

APRIL FOOLS’ DAY
Sing the following song with your children.  Let them make up additional verses about the strange things that can happen on April Fools’ Day.

Tune:  “The Farmer In the Dell”

Raindrops in my bed.
Mittens on my head.
These are strange things I must say –
It’s April Fools’ today!

A sock upon one hand.
A tiger in a band.
These are strange things I must say –
It’s April Fools’ today!
                        Gayle Bittinger
 

APRIL FOOLS’ DAY ANIMAL SONG
Tune:  “Old MacDonald Had a Farm”

Old MacDonald had a farm.  E-I-E-I-O.
And on his farm he had a cow. E-I-E-I-O.
With an oink, oink her, and an oink, oink there,
Here an oink, there an oink,
Everywhere an oink, oink.
Old MacDonald had a farm.  E-I-E-I-O.
                                    Adapted Traditional
Continue singing about other April Fools’ Day animals, such as a sheep that moos, a pig that neighs, a horse that quacks, and a duck that baas.

 
APRIL FOOL

Tune:  “Jingle Bells”

April fool, April fool,
April fool today.
You fool me and I fool you,
Then we laugh and say –
April fool, April fool!
It’s so fun to play.
You fool me and I fool you.
That’s how we play today.
                        Elizabeth Scofield
 

SNACKS
 

DIRT SNACK

  • Place some graham crackers or chocolate wafers in a plastic bag and use a rolling pin to crush them.
  • Pour some “dirt” in a small bowl or cup.
  • Next, place a few gummy worms on top.
  • Then cover the “worms” with more “dirt”
  • Serve with a small spoon for snack time.

Variation:  Make chocolate pudding and place “worms” inside, like above.
 

BACKWARDS MEALS
Let your children help you plan a meal for the day.
For example, they could plan to have veggies for an appetizer, sandwiches for the main course and cookies for dessert.
To turn it into an April Fools’ meal, just serve the foods backwards, starting with cookies first.
 
APRIL FOOLS’ DAY FOOD FUN

Serve hamburgers for breakfast and cereal for dinner.
Put a piece of bread between two slices of cheese for a sandwich.
Pour orange juice on your cereal, or colored milk.