Lost Sleep

Q: Why did the boy run around his bed?
A: Because he was trying to catch up on his sleep!

Explanation: To catch up on something (such as sleep) is to do something you have not had time to do.  You catch up on sleep by sleeping more after a time of little sleep.  You can also catch up on the latest news by reading/ watching today’s news (or the newest tweets on Twitter, for example).  Someone might say, “When I returned from vacation I had to catch up on the news/ my emails/ my homework …

To catch someone is to chase after that person until you can touch him or her.  You might catch someone in a race; a police officer might catch a criminal.  (You can also catch a ball but that is a different meaning).

This joke is funny because it plays with the different meanings of the word catch and the phrasal verb catch up on.

Speaking of catching, do you know the story of The Gingerbread Man?

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On Your Marks…

Q: How do you keep an elephant from charging?
A: Take away its credit cards!

Explanation: When an elephant runs towards you or something else, we say the elephant is charging, much like a bull might charge (run) at the cape of a matador.  To charge is also to pay for something by credit card. The beginning of the joke makes us think of how to stop an elephant from running at something- very difficult to do!

This joke is funny because it plays with the two of the meanings of the word charge: a way of moving forward and using a credit card.

The word charge has many other meanings, such as charging your phone or to accuse someone of doing something wrong.

Here is an elephant charging and someone stopping it:

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Toothache

Q: What is the best time to go to the dentist?
A: 2:30 (Tooth hurty!)

Explanation: A bad joke for the new year… and I hope your teeth (one tooth, two teeth) do not hurt!

This joke is funny because two thirty (2:30) sounds the same as tooth hurty.  You’re right, ‘hurty’ is not a real word.  A child might use the word ‘hurty’ or ‘owie’ or ‘boo boo’ to say that something hurts: “I have a tooth hurty.”  It’s not common but it happens.  If your tooth really hurts it is time to go to the dentist no matter the hour of the day.

Please send me any child-friendly jokes that you would like explained.

Watch Caillou visit the dentist:

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Hamburger, No Helper

Q: What do you call a cow with no legs?
A: Ground Beef!

Explanation: Beef is a type of meat that comes from cows, cattle. When this meat is put through a grinder it is called ground beef.  Ground beef is the type of meat that is found in hamburgers and other dishes.

This joke is funny because it plays with the word ground.  Ground is the land you stand on when you are outside.  Ground is also the past tense of the verb grind, to reduce something to small particles.

If a cow has no legs it would be on the ground, therefore, ground beef.

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Make Me a Drink

Frankenstein: Hey witch, can you make me a glass of lemonade?
Witch: Poof!  You’re a glass of lemonade!

Explanation: The word ‘poof‘ in this joke is the sound of a witch casting a spell.  (I could have used the word zap or another magic word.)

When you hear the question, “Can you make me a lemonade?” you expect the answer to be a yes, a no, or something like that. Maybe a, “Sorry, we have no lemons.”  In this case the witch turned Frankenstein into a glass of lemonade with magical powers and that makes this joke funny.

Here is a summary of the book Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley:

 

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Gives You Goosebumps

Q: What do ghosts read?
A: Booooks!

Explanation: Ghosts say, “Boo!” when they come out to scare you.  Of course books are for reading.  This joke is funny because it combines the word ‘boo’ with the word ‘books.’  Ok, it’s only sort of funny but it made me giggle.

Here is one of the Goosebumps movies:

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Drawing an American Doodle

Q: What do you call an American drawing?
A: Yankee doodle!

Explanation: There is a famous American song titled Yankee Doodle Dandy and a well known poem with a similar name. A doodle is a drawing, like you might make in your school notebook.

This joke is funny because an American drawing might be called an American doodle; Yankee is a name for an American, especially during the Revolution.

Happy 4th of July to the folks in the U.S. and those traveling overseas.

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