April Fool's Day

two young people laughing

Do you like playing tricks on people? April Fool's Day is a special day for jokes and tricks in many countries. Read this article to find out about it.  


Do the preparation task first. Then read the article and do the exercises to check your understanding.

April Fool's Day is celebrated on 1 April in many countries around the world. On this day, people play practical jokes on each other and have fun trying to make other people believe things that are not true. Traditionally, you should only play jokes and tricks until midday – after this time it is considered bad luck.

Tricks to play on your family and friends

In the UK and many other places, people play practical jokes on each other. Just remember that nobody likes to be embarrassed or made fun of – the jokes should be funny for everybody. Here are some easy tricks you could try on your family and friends.

  • The jelly juice joke

Put some fruit jelly in a glass and ask someone if they'd like some juice. When they try to drink it, say 'April Fool!'

  • The remote control trick

Make your family think the remote control is broken by putting a small sticker over the sensor. After they fail to turn on the TV, take off the sticker and turn the TV on and say 'April Fool!'

  • The spider joke

Do you know someone who's scared of spiders? Get a plastic spider and put it in their shoe! If you haven't got a plastic spider, you could find a picture online and print out lots of copies and put them around the house!

  • The mouse under the fridge trick

Get a piece of string or an old shoelace and put it under the fridge. Leave a bit of the string sticking out. Then take a picture of the 'mouse' under the fridge, send it to the other members of your family and say something like, 'Help! It's moving! It's alive!' When they come running to the kitchen, shout 'April Fool!'

April Fool's Day around the world

In France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Italy and French-speaking areas of Canada and Switzerland, the 1 April tradition is known as the 'April Fish'. A common joke is to try to stick a paper fish onto someone's back without them noticing.

In many Spanish-speaking countries as well as the Philippines, there is also a special day for playing jokes, but it is in December instead of April.

April Fool's Day in the news, on TV and online

For many years, TV programmes and newspapers have been playing tricks on people on 1 April, and now these jokes often happen online.

One of the earliest examples was in 1957 when the BBC, the UK's national TV channel, broadcast a report on how spaghetti grew on trees. The film showed a family in Switzerland collecting spaghetti from trees, and many people were fooled into believing it, as in the 1950s British people didn't eat much pasta and many didn't know how it was made!

In 1998, the American hamburger chain Burger King announced that it had created a left-handed hamburger. The advert said that the burger was more comfortable for left-handed people to pick up and eat! Thousands of customers ordered the new burger in restaurants.

In 2016, Duolingo, the language learning app, advertised special pillows that allowed you to become fluent in Spanish, French, Italian or Japanese in your sleep!

Of course, every day we need to think carefully about what we believe when we read or watch news and other stories, especially online. But on 1 April, be extra careful! Happy April Fool's Day!


Do you have April Fool's Day in your country or another day for jokes and tricks? 

Average: 2.7 (6 votes)
Personal online tutoring
EnglishScore Tutors is the British Council’s one-to-one tutoring platform for 13- to 17-year-olds.


Submitted by GoldenHour_Girl on Sun, 04/30/2023 - 10:51

Our country doesn't really celebrate April Fool's Day, but our school's anniversary comes on that date. Does make us giggle a little on the coincidence, though.

Submitted by trungtnd on Fri, 01/07/2022 - 02:35

In my country, April Fool's Day is not common. Old people often do not know the meaning of this day.

Submitted by Tolis5 on Mon, 07/19/2021 - 06:58

Here in Greece we have sth similar.On 1st April,we also trick the others,but for all day long.We call it April's 1st Day,and it's great fun!!
Profile picture for user Cfvdv

Submitted by Cfvdv on Wed, 06/09/2021 - 14:00

Yes, in my country we have a day similar to April Fool's day. Here, we can do tricks on peoples after midday too, in the hole day! But in the last 2 years of April Fool's day I couldn't play a trick on anyone because of the quarantine...

Submitted by Darque on Tue, 04/06/2021 - 12:49

I think, it must be interesting. I’m not a joker, but sometimes I can do some tricks on my friends. And, actually, some of my friend thinking, I’m not a good joker… -_- It’s a little discourage.

Submitted by hermione123 on Sun, 01/17/2021 - 05:19

I think, in my country, we don't celebrate April Fools Day.

Submitted by Tolis5 on Wed, 07/21/2021 - 14:19

Really?!Our countries are so far away from each other!I'm from Greece.

In reply to by hermione123

Submitted by hermione123 on Thu, 07/22/2021 - 08:15

i know!! greece is a beautiful country, and santorini looks amazing! i'd love to go there:))

In reply to by Tolis5

Submitted by Tolis5 on Sat, 07/31/2021 - 15:05

You are absolutely right!You should definitely visit my country!It has many islands,amazing beaches and a very long history! P.S.Santorini is really lovely!What about Indonesia?How is it?

In reply to by hermione123

Submitted by hermione123 on Mon, 08/02/2021 - 12:36

Yeah, greek history is really remarkable. Indonesia's pretty cool. We have so many awesome beaches, the most famous ones of course in Bali! And we got so many volcanoes and islands too. Fun fact: i heard no one actually knows the exact total of the islands! We also have so many languages and great foods too :)

In reply to by Tolis5

Profile picture for user Giovannichoi

Submitted by Giovannichoi on Thu, 06/25/2020 - 09:09

We plays trick on the other people in April Fools Day too, but we play it all-day in Korea.

Submitted by a696778 on Sat, 04/04/2020 - 08:23

in my country, we celebrate April Fools Day also. But in my country, we do tricks all-day.

Submitted by a695353 on Thu, 04/02/2020 - 19:22

In Greece, we also have this funny tradition on April Fool's day. We trick each other and we have lots of fun. I love to prank my family and friends but not to be pranked back. It is a great day!
Profile picture for user Timothy15

Submitted by Timothy15 on Wed, 04/01/2020 - 13:58

My country celebrates April Fool's Day

Submitted by Demonking73 on Thu, 05/09/2019 - 22:09

I dont have any day like April Fool's day.But in that day i just become more carefull about others so that i maynt be fool and i dont tricks on people because i dont want to break their believing about me.
Profile picture for user Batgirl

Submitted by Batgirl on Mon, 01/22/2018 - 17:58

We do have such holiday in our country. It's also called April Fools' Day but it is not as widely spread as in the UK. Children and teens usually play triks on this holiday. There are also some shops with stuff for celebrating this day(fake food, pillows that make funny sounds etc.)
English courses near you