Does your day include a dose – or two – of laughter? Do you enjoy a good belly laugh at least once a week? Have you found yourself “in stitches” this month? No matter your age, you need humor in your life. April is National Humor Month – an opportunity to share the gift of laughter with adults. Here are a few prescriptions to make them smile.

  • Celebrate April Fool’s Day on April 1. Encourage participants to wear a zany outfit. How about stripes and polka dots, a blouse worn backward, or mismatched socks? Eat a silly food combination, like ice cream with pickles.
  • Take a funny group photo – wear big red clown noses or floppy hats.
  • Act out some short humorous skits.
  • Watch a wacky comedy with an all-star cast, like the 1963 hit It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World. (Spencer Tracy, Buddy Hackett, Milton Berle, Ethel Merman, Phil Silvers, Sid Caesar, Mickey Rooney, and Jonathan Winters star in the film.)
  • Listen to excerpts from a humorous audio book, by an author like Bill Cosby, George Burns, Erma Bombeck, or Dave Barry. Ask: Do you have a sense of humor? Can you laugh at yourself and with others? Have you learned to laugh at life’s annoyances? What do you find humorous?
  • For the men: Watch a baseball bloopers video. Listen to Abbott and Costello’s famous routine, “Who’s on First?” Sing “Take Me Out to the Ball Game.”
  • Enjoy funny anecdotes, one-liners, and riddles from the Reader’s Digest column, “Laughter, the Best Medicine.”
  • Listen to the lyrics of some funny songs, like “Alley Oop,” “Yakety Yak,” “Name Game,” or “Charlie Brown.” Laugh at funny song titles.
  • Laugh with children – share knock-knock jokes, riddles, or silly rhymes.
  • Watch episodes of the old TV show Dennis the Menace. Ask: What are shenanigans? Were you ever considered a mischief-maker? Tell us about some of your childhood mischief.
  • Quiz your group on comic strip characters. Browse through some old humorous comic strips and ask your participants which ones mimic their lives. Ask: Did you grow up reading the comics? Did you grab the comics section first when reading a newspaper? Name some of your favorite characters.
  • Bone up on joke telling – clean jokes only! (Be sure to rehearse the punch line.) Hold a joke-telling contest. Vote on the best delivery. Winner gets a gag gift.
  • Define prank. Name some synonyms for prank. Reminisce about school, Halloween, or April Fool’s Day tricks and jokes.
  • Wear pins and buttons with funny sayings – e.g., Life is uncertain…so eat dessert first!
  • Enjoy a hilarious comedy routine from the piano-playing comedian, Victor Borge. Reminisce about other favorite comedy routines – Jack Benny or Uncle Miltie?


Quiz your group on some favorite comic strip characters. Reminisce about their antics!

  1. Dagwood, Alexander, and Cookie Bumstead are members of this comic strip family. Blondie
  2. In which comic strip was Sadie Hawkins Day created? Li’l Abner
  3. What does Popeye the Sailor eat to make him strong? Spinach
  4. What is the name of Archie Andrews’ best friend since childhood in the Archie comic books? Jughead Jones
  5. What is the name of the family pet in Hi and Lois? Dawg
  6. In what kind of a setting does the comic strip Beetle Bailey take place? U. S. Army post
  7. This female character in the Peanuts comic strip is loud and bossy. Lucy
  8. Dennis the Menace drives this neighbor crazy. Mr. Wilson
  9. If a pair of people look like “Mutt and Jeff,” they are what? One tall, one short
  10. During which war was Sad Sack created? World War II

“HUMOR ME” written by Sue Hansen. © 2009 ElderSong Publications, Inc. All rights reserved.

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