Did you know that the month of April got its name from a large silverback gorilla named Bill? When early explorers went into the jungle every spring, they’d see the gorilla and cry out, “Hey! It’s Ape Bill!” But people thought they were saying “April” and talking about the calendar. Over time the name “April” stuck.
Believe it or not, that story about Ape Bill was actually totally made up to try to fool you. That’s because every year April 1 is April Fools’ Day. It is a time to pull lighthearted pranks and tell wild tall tales. Sometimes news media and advertisers get in on the fun, such as when the BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation) claimed that farmers were harvesting spaghetti noodles from trees or when Taco Bell said they were going to buy the Liberty Bell and rename it the “Taco Liberty Bell.” You know it’s a good April Fools’ prank if you can get a grin out of someone – just don’t take it too far!
April actually gets its name from the word aperio, which in Latin means “to open.” This is because in April, seeds that were planted in March are now beginning to grow and buds are starting to bloom.
The flower of the month is the daisy. The daisy represents innocence and purity, which is fitting for the springtime. Interestingly, if you give someone a daisy it can also mean that you are willing to keep their secrets.
The April gemstone is the diamond. Like the daisy flower, diamonds also symbolize innocence and purity. We often think of a diamond as valuable, and there are many factors that increase its worth: its size (carat weight), clarity, color, and the cut quality. Diamonds are the hardest naturally occurring substance found on the earth, which means cutting and shaping them into gemstones is a difficult process.
There are 30 days in April.
A dozen states recognize Good Friday as a holiday, and many schools in those states will have the day off. If your school district observes Good Friday, you can expect 19 days of school this month. Some school districts also schedule spring break in early April.
Here are over 7,000 lesson plans for April.
Pulling a lighthearted April Fools’ prank on your students can actually lead to a great discussion about critical thinking. We cannot believe everything we read and hear – a discussion about common sense and trusting one’s instincts is an important part of teaching media literacy.
Yes, please do. Enjoy!