Danish newspaper Kids’ News provides children with a new reading experience – on their own terms.
“All the news stories we see and hear on television, the radio and the internet are written for adults,” says Jonas Stenbæk Christoffersen, the Editor-in-Chief of Kids’ News.
Copenhagen-based media company Berlingske Media pondered the question and decided to launch a surprising new product: a newspaper for 6 to 12 year old kids, which received major media attention when it was published in April 2014.
Some of the stories in Kids’ News are written by children and the newspaper is published in Denmark every Friday. It was clear from the very beginning that the newspaper would be published in a printed format. The publisher thought it was important to offer kids an opportunity to concentrate on news in print form without video clips or other distractions constantly interrupting the reading experience.
Interest in print news
The 24-page newspaper has found its audience without major marketing efforts and all feedback has been positive. Feedback about the content of the newspaper is received from children, parents, experts and politicians alike.
“Kids can be very critical, but they always present their wishes in a constructive manner which is very nice,” Stenbæk Christoffersen says happily.
He says Berlingske Media carried out a lot of research before finally deciding to establish a new newspaper.
“Several European countries, including France, Germany, Austria and Norway, publish newspapers for kids that are very popular,” Stenbæk Christoffersen notes.
Interviews and stories by kids
The secret weapon of Kids’ News is kids themselves. Tweenage reporters participate in writing articles and performing interviews with the support of the Editor-in-Chief. This approach makes sure that the articles are not what adults would expect of a news story.
In the first issue of the newspaper, the young reporters asked the Danish Prime Minister whether she was ticklish. Helle Thorning-Schmidt said yes and continued to explain where she is the most ticklish.
“Adults would never ask such a question,” Stenbæk Christoffersen laughs.
Kids’ News has its own website and an online newspaper application is also available for iPads. The website includes additional material related to the articles that is suitable for school use.
“Nevertheless, our focus is on the print version. A newspaper delivered to your letter box provides kids with an up-to-date glimpse of the adult world.”
Photography Nikolai Linares/Scanpix