Take this: Parents want to promote the habit of reading newspaper in their kids from young age but fail miserably. Why? Coz obviously kids have more lucrative options to indulge in; they would rather spend time with their friends or play games on mobile or watch cartoons on television rather than read a 16-page broadsheet in black and white. And as far as reading goes, that quota gets filled by their school textbooks or some fun story book at the most.
We parents know the importance of reading newspaper; we know that It can be one of the best ways to make them street smart, it can be a tool to increase their general knowledge and also to improve their reading and writing skills. But the importance of newspaper reading is lost on young kids, however hard you try.
Now though it can a difficult task to inculcate the habit of reading newspaper at a young age, it’s not an impossible feat to achieve. And to achieve my mission of making newspaper reading a daily habit for my daughter I did two-three things.
The first was to take a subscription of a newspaper meant for young readers only; trust me this newspaper which I am going to tell you about caught my daughter’s attention immediately. Newspaper sorted, then I made it a point to sit and read the newspaper along with her (well this one I still do most of the times). If she struggles with some word, we would look up the meaning in dictionary and write it down; this ensure she does not get bored reading it alone. Lastly, in an effort to make her an independent reader, I ask her to read from the newspaper on her own if t’s a simple story or an article, and then would discuss it together.
Now coming to the Newspaper, one of the best newspaper which I found apt for young kids is the News Shuttle.
It’s a fortnightly newspaper started by a group of talented mothers. Helmed by their editor Shweta Arora Nair, the idea of News Shuttle was borne out of “the desire to reinforce the faith of reading and the need that the kids should think beyond school books and gadgets”.
We all know how important the aesthetics are to make a product look appealing, so First let’s get to the “looks” of the newspaper. The newspaper is printed on a thick, glossy paper with colourful pictures and big font making it easy and attractive to read. Also, since its tabloid size, it makes it very easy for the kids to handle. So, for design and appearance the newspaper gets a thumbs-up from me and my daughter.
Now coming to other features of the Newspaper: News shuttle is rich in content. the paper spans almost every aspect of news, be it space, science, technology, books, sports or even festivals; it has enough material to keep a child engaged meaningfully.
Another plus point is that there’s a perfect balance of written words and illustrations and pictures in this paper. A kid will definitely enjoy reading the paper since each article is explained well with related pictures, making it easy to process the information.
Coming to language: it’s simple enough to read and understand by a young kid and even if there is one or two difficult words, the meaning is explained.
The content of the newspaper is child-appropriate. Unlike a regular newspaper which sometimes leave a bad taste in the mouth because of gory news or distressing pictures, News Shuttle is all about positive news, thereby making it a very safe option for young readers. My daughter like the fun page which has a right mix of news and entertainment. I especially like their English section which teaches the fine nuances of grammar in simple yet effective way. Of special interest could be the readers contribution where kids are encouraged to send their stories, poems and even review on books or movies.
Besides the above there are colouring page, puzzles and stories which adds variety to the content.
In a nutshell I would say that subscribing to News Shuttle could prove to be one of the easiest way to inculcate the habit of reading newspaper in your kids from a young age. News Shuttle has two subscription plans – Rs. 899 for 1 Year (24 copies)and Rs. 1499 for 2 Years (48 copies). You can also get two samples of newspaper for free by paying only the shipping charge of Rs. 50.