Best Jokes in English for Students

Do your students ever seem a little bored or sleepy?

As a teacher, there’s nothing more frightening than standing at the front of the class and having at a bunch of despondent faces staring back at you.

When my classes start to seem apathetic, I like to spice things up with some classic English jokes!

Jokes are a great way to lighten the atmosphere in your classroom and, when used appropriately, they can be a fun way to get students practicing their English.

Using jokes in English for students in your classroom will not only get your classes laughing, it’ll keep them learning too!


English Jokes for Students


  • Q: How much does a pirate pay for corn?
    A: A buccaneer (a “buck an ear” meaning “a dollar per ear”)
  • Q: Why was King Arthur’s army too tired to fight?
    A: It had too many sleepless knights (the common “knight” versus “night” issue)
  • Q: What do you call a thieving alligator?
    A: A Crook-o-dile (“crook” the informal word for “thief”)
  • Q: What do you call a bee that can’t make up its mind?
    A: A Maybe
  • Q: What kind of nut has a hole?
    A: A donut.
  • Q: I fly without wings, I cry without eyes. What am I?
    A: Clouds


  1. So what if I don’t know what “Armageddon” means? It’s not the end of the world.
  2. Did you hear about the crook who stole a calendar? He got twelve months!
  3. I’ve just written a song about tortillas; actually, it’s more of a rap!

Knock-Knock Jokes

  • A: Knock, knock!
    B: Who’s there?
    A: Beets!
    B: Beets who?
    A: Beets me!

  • A: Knock, knock!
    B: Who’s there?
    A: Kiwi
    B: Kiwi who?
    A: Kiwi go to the store? 
  • A: Knock, knock!
    B: Who’s there?
    A: Lettuce
    B: Lettuce who?
    A: Let us in, we’re freezing! 

  • A: Knock, knock
    B: Who’s there?
    A: Figs
    B: Figs who?
    A: Figs the doorbell, it’s broken! 

Common Jokes

  • Teacher: Did your father help you with your homework?
    Student: No, he did it all by himself! 

  • Teacher: Tell me a sentence that starts with “I.”
    Student: I is the…
    Teacher: Stop! Never put “is” after I.” Always put “am” after “I.”
    Student: Okay…I am the ninth letter of the alphabet. 

  • A: Why did the chicken cross the road?
    B: To get to the other side!
    A: How many flies does it take to screw in a light bulb?
    B: Two, but nobody knows how they got in there. 


  • Q: The more you take, the more you leave behind. What am I?
    A: Footsteps
  • Q: You see a boat filled with people. You look again, but this time you don’t see a single person on the boat. Hint: The boat has not sunk.
    A: All the people on the boat are married 

How to Use Jokes in the Classroom

1. Do a Presentation on the Many Types of Jokes Available

You could spend a whole lesson on jokes! Introduce your students to all the different types of jokes:

  • Puns
  • One-liners
  • Knock-knock jokes
  • Riddles
  • Common jokes

Prepare a slide presentation or a handout on the various forms jokes take. Start with a general description and provide examples. Within the examples, you may need to explain the answer in detail.

Once you’ve presented your description and explanation of each type of joke, give students a chance to practice what they learned.

2. Warmers or Wrap-up

Sometimes it can be fun to break the ice by telling a simple joke to start the day’s lesson. Give the students at least a few minutes to try to figure out the answer as a warm-up exercise. If a student guesses correctly, great! If not, give them the answer and provide them with an explanation as you see fit.

Another option is to wrap up a class with a joke.

You can even give challenge your students with a riddle at the end of class, asking them to report back with their answers in the next class.

3. Complete the Joke or Fill in the Blank

This activity is ideal for practicing reading comprehension and critical thinking once students are familiar with the types of jokes we have in English.

Prepare a worksheet that lists as many different jokes as you like. For each joke, remove one of the keywords and put it in a word bank box at the top of the worksheet. In class, instruct students to work individually or in small groups to fill in the missing words and complete the jokes.

Students must carefully read each joke and understand it to determine which word from the word bank fits in the blank.

4. Match the Beginning of the Joke with Its Ending

For this activity, you will need to type up a list of jokes you’d like to use with your students. Type them in such a way that you can cut them in half. Then, print the sheet out and cut the jokes in half so that the beginning of the joke is separated from its punchline.

For example, if you use the joke: I’m a big fan of whiteboards. I find them quite re-markable. “I’m a big fan of whiteboards” should be on one slip of paper and “I find them quite re-markable” should be on another.

In class, distribute the pieces of the jokes so that each student has a slip of paper. The students must circulate the room and talk with each other in order to find the beginning or ending half of the joke they have.

5. Grammar Focus

This exercise can be done in a number of ways. The idea is to get your students to focus on grammar and analyze the jokes.

Begin by picking jokes you want to use in class, and use topic-appropriate jokes when possible.

Prepare a worksheet with your selected jokes. For each joke, ask the students to identify whatever grammatical element you’ve chosen to practice. In the pun below, not only could you ask your students to identify the homophone, you could also ask them to say what verb tense is being used. Take it a step further and have them also give you the infinitive form of the verbs used.

Yesterday, a clown held the door open for me. It was such a nice jester!

This activity can really be adapted for whatever grammar concept you’d like your students to practice.

6. Translations

Ask students to think about some of their favorite jokes in their own language. Then, in pairs or small groups, have them translate the jokes into English as best as they can. In my experience, students are always eager to share their own culture with their teacher, and this can be fun for the whole class, including you!

Once the students have completed translating the jokes, ask them to share them with the class. Analyze them.

  • Do the jokes make sense in English? Why or why not?
  • Is the joke based on a cultural reference that doesn’t have meaning in English?
  • Did everyone get the same translation?
  • Can anyone think of a better way to say the joke in English?

Questions like these will help students practice their speaking or writing skills, teaching them how to express their thoughts and ideas more effectively.

7. Writing Jokes

This activity lets students exercise their creativity and practice their general English skills.

Once students are familiar with the different types of joke structures, give them a chance to write their own jokes. They can work individually or with their peers to create their own jokes. You can provide as little or as much structure as you like. Maybe you only want them to focus on speaking, so ask them to write knock-knock jokes with a partner.

Or, perhaps you want them to write three jokes in whatever form they choose, or you could ask them to write at least one joke in each of the categories listed above.

However you decide to structure this activity, always make sure you save time at the end of the lesson for students to share their favorite jokes.

8. Stand-Up Comedy Show

What’s better than presentations to get your students up and speaking? A comedy show!

Students can practice their presentation and public speaking skills in a fun, carefree environment.

Let students prepare the jokes they want to perform. They could memorize existing jokes or write their own. Students can work individually or perform in pairs. Decide on how much time you want to give each student or pair to perform their routine.

Spend one lesson letting them prepare their routine, then host the comedy show the following class. That way, students will feel more comfortable presenting in front of their peers.


As you can see, jokes can be a really useful tool in the classroom.

These are just some of the ways you might incorporate jokes in English for students into your teaching, but feel free to get creative! From introducing new vocabulary and cultural practices to providing ways to practice grammar, jokes can be used to add an element of fun to just about any English lesson.

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