There is nothing better than laughing together with your children. Laughter builds connections, makes us feel good, and helps us forget our worries for a little bit. Reading funny picture books is a great way to foster relationships with children through laughter!
This list features our favorite picture books which, over the years, have made my kids and I (and even my oh-so serious spouse) laugh with secret giggles, loud snorts, hearty guffaws, and even a few surprised gasps. We know you'll enjoy them, too. And don't forget to read aloud in your best silly and dramatic voices!
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Funny Picture Books for Kids
The Book with No Pictures by B.J. Novak
You've probably heard of this book by now, and if you haven't get yourself to the nearest book store or libary and pick it up. Unless, of course, you are a Very Serious Person. Very Serious People should stay far away from this book. Although come to think of it, perhaps this book is the perfect antidote for seriousness. Ages 3 and up.
My Parents Won't Stop Talking by Emma Hunsinger and Tillie Walden
While reading this book I was transported back to my own childhood with memories of endlessly waiting for my mother and her friends to stop talking! If only my experience had been as amusing as the one portrayed in this book. Molly wants to go to the park but her patience is stretched thin as her parents gab away with the neighbors. To help her get through the interminable experience, her imagination takes over in a series of hilarious and wonderfully illustrated fantasies to help her get through the interminable experience. You will LOVE this book. Ages 4 and up.
Brief Thief by Michaël Escoffier, illustrated by Kris Di Giacomo
Find it: Amazon
It is absolutely impossible not to laugh at this book! Especially the ending! Your kids will be rolling on the floor. Seriously. I don’t want to give it away so let’s just say it involves a chameleon, a wash tub, a rabbit, a conscience and hole-y briefs. If that’s not a recipe for hilarity I don’t know what is. Even my stoic husband cracked a smile and that’s all the evidence you need. Ages 4 and up.
The Rock From the Sky by Jon Klassen
Klassen has really outdone himself with this one! Fans of his previous work, This is Not My Hat will recognize Klassen's absurdist humor and I like this title even better than that one. Organized in terse and suspenseful chapters, Klassen tells the tale of a couple of hat-wearing animals who debate the merits of a spot. But is there room enough for more in the spot? And what is that strange alien creature? The surprise ending will have you laughing out loud. Ages 4 and up.
Naked by Michael Ian Black, illustrated by Debbie Ridpath Ohi
My then-5 year old was OBSESSED with Naked! I can't imagine a child not liking this book. Is there any child who doesn't love running around in his birthday suit? I think not. Both the author and illustrator have perfectly captured the joy that comes with a cool breeze on one's bare backside. Ages 2 and up.
Who Wet My Pants by Bob Shea, illustrated by Zachariah OHora
Reuben has brought donuts for the rest of the scouting troop, but as they stare at his pants, he demands to know which of them wet his pants! His empathetic friends try to tell him they understand about how accidents happen, but Reuben is determined to place to blame elsewhere. A very funny book with a good lesson to help build a child's emotional intelligence. Ages 4 and up.
A Perfectly Messed-Up Story by Patrick McDonnell
I had no expectations when I read this book and was quite unprepared for how hilarious it is. I don't even want to tell you the premise! All I will say is that book loving parents with messy children will completely relate. Be prepared to read it aloud with flair -- leave your monotone at the door!
Petunia by Roger Duvoisin
Petunia is a delightful, quirky, none-too-bright goose who is under the impression that being in possession of a book makes her the smartest creature in the farmyard. She puts on airs and dispenses highly questionable advice but is quickly and humorously brought to task by the other farm animals and a run-in with a box of fireworks. Also find this book on my list of classic picture books from the 1950s. Ages 4 and up.
Stuck by Oliver Jeffers
I read this one aloud to my son's first grade class and the kids roared with laughter. Floyd's kite gets stuck in a tree! He attempts to dislodge it by tossing larger and larger items into its branches, where, much to the reader's amusement, they stick. The ending is delightfully absurd. Ages 3 and up.
Aliens Love Underpants by Claire Freedman, illustrated by Ben Cort
I don't know about your kids, but my boys love a book that involves underpants humor. It turns out that there are no underpants in space (little known fact) and so the aliens must make special trips to Earth for undies of all kinds, shape, colors and sizes. What could be better than underwear-loving aliens? Why underwear-loving aliens that rhyme, of course! Why not indulge in a few giggles? Not all picture books have to be profound (thank goodness). Ages 4 and up.
Shh! We Have a Plan by Chris Haughton
Four friends have a plan. They sneak though the wilderness in an attempt to catch a bird. Along the way, they "shush" the littlest participant, assuring him, they "have a plan!" Each attempt, however, is thwarted (in a giggle-inducing way) and it turns out, the little guy may have the right idea, after all. Great fun, and it offers a subtle lesson in the power of cooperation and kindness. Ages 4 and up.
The Great Fuzz Frenzy by Janet Stevens, illustrated by Susan Stevens Crummel
is a long time favorite in our house and I love to read it because it give my inner drama queen (well, it's actually more of an outer drama queen) the opportunity to create lots of funny voices. Find out what happens when a tennis ball rolls into a prairie dog burrow. Hint: it involves a lot of fuzz. Ages 5 and up.
Is Everyone Ready for Fun? by Jan Thomas
Find it: Amazon
Honestly, I could have picked any one of Jan Thomas' picture books for this list of funny books because once you read the first one, you won't be able to stop searching out more. I've read this one at library story time again and again with great success. Ages 2 and up.
I Must Have Bobo! by Eileen Rosenthal, illustrated by Marc Rosenthal
Find it: Your Library | Amazon
When young Willy wakes up, he finds that his special sock monkey, Bobo, is missing. It turns out that Earl the Cat loves Bobo just as much as Willy. As Willy searches high and low for Bobo, Earl sneaks around in the background. My kids loved "being in on the joke" and it is quite satisfying when Willy finally finds Earl and Bobo together. Ages 3 and up.
Oh No the Aunts Are Here by Adam Rex, illustrated by Lian Cho
This hilarious take on over-the-top personalities that descend upon family reunions will have your kids giggling during read aloud time. A girl describes the quirky relatives and the ensuing chaos as they hug, pinch cheeks, distribute coins and take over the kids' bedrooms. The story is filled not just with laughs, but with love as well. Ages 4 and up.
Warning! Do Not Open This Book! Adam Lehrhaupt, illustrated by Matthew Forsythe
This book is sure to delight. What do you do when you are told not to read a book? What about when you are supposed to read a book but someone has closed it? A group of monkeys will help you sort things out. But be warned, you may giggle. Ages 3 and up.
I Won't Give Up My Rubber Band by Shinsuke Yoshitake
Your kids will delight in this hilarious tale of a child who clings to the joy of possessing a rubber band. After all, rubber bands are wonderful, they can hold things together, be worn as a bracelet, fly great distances and even wrap together all the bad people of the world. But what happens if the band breaks? Exhilarating. Ages 4 and up.
Something's Wrong!: A Bear, a Hare, and Some Underwear by Jory John, illustrated by Erin Kraan
Why is underwear always so funny? Jeff the bear has a list, he's gone over it but it seems he's forgotten something! What could it be? Perhaps it's related to the tighty-whities he's still sporting! The story also contains a little lesson about handling embarrassment. Laugh-out-loud funny. Ages 3 and up.
Oh No, Astro! by Matt Roeser, illustrated by Brad Woodard
Find it: Amazon
Do outer space and humor make a great combination? Of course they do! Astro is a grumpy asteroid just trying to mind his own business. But then a satellite crashes into him and knocks him out of orbit. Nova, a human girl, watches him through a telescope as he hurtles towards earth. Once he lands he has to admit he's ready for another adventure. Great fun! Ages 4 and up.
XO, Exoplanet by Deborah Underwood, illustrated by Jorge Lacera
More space-tastic laughs! Planets from our solar system start sending letters, space-express, to an exoplanet. Soon, the correspondents are learning about each other and considering different perspectives. The silly conversations between the planets impart a great deal of actual scientific information! Ages 4 and up.
Unicorn Thinks He's Pretty Great by Bob Shea
Like all Shea's books, this picture book about a unicorn who can make it rain cupcakes is quirky and funny. When Unicorn moves into the neighborhood, Goat is a wee bit jealous of all Unicorn's seemingly great qualities. He doesn't think they will be friends but a goat-cheese pizza ends up bringing them together in a most amusing manner. Ages 3 and up.
The Wonky Donkey by Craig Smith, illustrated by Katz Cowley
Can we all remember the viral video of a grandmother who couldn't read this book without collapsing in a fit of giggles? Do you dare try to read it with a straight face? The rhyming text about a spunky, hanky-panky, cranky, stinky, dinky, lanky, honky-tonky, winky wonky donkey will certainly test your mettle. Ages 2 and up.
Bathe the Cat by Alice B. McGinty, illustrated by David Roberts
Everything goes haywire when the cat needs a bath. It's family chore day and when the cat sees the list of chores spelled out with refrigerator magnets he starts to rearrange things. The family sets to work on the hilariously jumbled chore list, and the cat may end up wishing he hadn't tried so hard to get out of his bath! Ages 3 and up.
Tea Party Rules by Ame Dyckman, illustrated by K. G. Campbell
Find it: Amazon
Cub happens upon a little girl's tea party, and boy do those cookies smell good! But -- arg! -- there are so many rules to follow! After some finagling and lots of laughter, the rules change and the two become friends. Ages 3 and up.
MORE: Books about Tea Time
Snappsy the Alligator (Did Not Ask to be in this Book) by Julie Falatko, illustrated by Tim Miller
Find it: Amazon
The narrator describes Snappsy's daily business, and Snappsy objects every step of the way. My son thought the feud between narrator and character was quite hilarious and we were both amused by the revelation of the narrator's identity. Great fun, and a good book for taking turns reading aloud. Parents can read the narrator role, kids can act out Snappy's lines. Ages 4 and up.
Mom, There's a Bear at the Door by Sabine Lipan, illustrated by Manuela Olten
Find it: Amazon
My seven year old adored this German import. The text is written as a conversation between mom and son. (Perfect for tandem reading!) The mom's text is in red, the boy's in black. The boy tells his mom there is a bear at the door. She obviously doesn't believe, but she humors him, as moms do. He describes the bear's journey to get to the door (through a forest, on a bike, up the elevator, etc.), and of course, his liking for black forest cake. Ages 4 and up.
Dragon Was Terrible by Kelly DiPucchio, illustrated by Greg Pizzoli
Kids will love this amusing dragon story! Dragon is a terrible misbehaving dragon and the king has had enough! He offers a reward to whomever can tame the dragon. None of the knights who step up are successful, so the village turns to ordinary folks. But the dragon continues to grow more and more terrible. Not until a local boy demonstrates the magic of storytelling does the dragon show signs of calming down. Will it work? You'll have to read and find out. Ages 3 and up.