The Best Kids Magazines for the Elementary School Set

The Best Kids Magazines for the Elementary School Set

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based on 142 ratings
Updated on Apr 2, 2014

Books, shmooks. Sure, we all want our kids reading, but what they read isn’t as important as the fact that they’re putting eyeballs to paper. If your child groans at the thought cracking open a book, a magazine subscription might be just the ticket. Every kid loves mail. Thinking of filling their postbox with something wonderful, but don’t know where to start? Look no further than these magazines:

Ladybug Jam-packed with stories, songs, activities, cartoons, games, and ear-pleasing poems, this monthly magazine has a nice mix of reading levels. Some text is easy enough for a beginning reader, while other stories are best saved for sessions with the family. Colorful illustrations draw kids in and make the characters pop off the page. And silly stories make early reading attempts (or reading over mom's shoulder) fun. We bet it will keep young ones running to the mailbox all year long. ($33.95/year, Ages 2-6, )

Click Click's motto is "Opening windows for young minds" and the magazine delivers with a wide range of quirky facts and stranger-than-fiction photography. Even the cartoons are packed with scientific insights or historical tidbits. The magazine has its share of the yuck-factor kids love-- like worm poop or jelly covered salamander eggs.  Buyer beware: Click is heavy on nature and science and not the best choice for kids who prefer fiction over fact. But for the right kid, a great introduction to science for the youngest set. ($33.95/year, Ages 3-7)

Highlights Chances are, you’ve heard of Highlights. It’s been going strong for sixty years now. In fact, it’s the most-read children’s magazine in the world. Crack it open and you’ll see why. From fictional tales featuring Alice Jones: Numbers Detective, to real-life cool kids doing good in the world, to non-fiction features like "Can Dolphins Do Math?", this magazine knows how to keep kids’ interest and get them reading. Brain teasers, jokes, riddles, and word puzzles keep the fun factor high. And creativity gets a boost with crafts like a rocket ship that flies, a gumball machine magnet, or a homemade treasure chest. Our favorite feature? "Your Own Pages", where kids can submit their own poems and art work for publication. ($29.94/year, Ages 6-9.)

National Geographic Kids This magazine is slicker than its less-glossy kid counterparts. The photography sings. The topics are catchy—from “Help Set a Guinness World Record” to “9 Things You Need to Know About Global Warming” to “Harriet Tubman: Civil War Spy”. There are guest editors like Cameron Diaz and splashy candy-colored layouts. But unfortunately, there are also lots of ads, arranged alongside the editorial content in a way that makes it difficult to tell the difference. Now don’t get us wrong, we know ads help keep magazines afloat (ours included), but if you want to limit your child’s exposure to junk food and sugar cereal, skip this magazine, and go for the adult version, National Geographic Magazine, a fantastic choice for older kids, especially with parents-in-tow. ($15.00/year, Ages 6-14)

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