Language is all about words - and daily exposure. Magazines are yet another way we achieve the 30 minutes a day we target for each of my family’s 3 languages.
We have several subscriptions, but it’s a treat to check magazines out from the local library too. You may be surprised by their foreign language offerings. I know I was when my son was born!
Since it’s best to start them young, these are 10 of our favorite magazines for English and Spanish language acquisition for ages birth/toddler and up:
(English, age 1+)
Published by the reputable National Wildlife Federation, this bi-monthly magazine is for the youngest in the Ranger Rick series. Complete with beautiful, full-color photographs, it's a great introduction to the fascinating world of animals. Included are bite size chunks of information and toddler appropriate games and distractions.
(English and Spanish, ages 3+)
I have to admit, they say this magazine is sized for small hands to hold, but I sure wish it were bigger! The photographs are of course stunning, and who better to trust than National Geographic to teach all things animals, plants, culture, and even science.
(English, all ages)
Looking for something reminiscent of days gone by for your little one? This award winning monthly newspaper style magazine is filled with nothing but comics, revitalizing what Sunday comics used to be. The giant sized 15" X 22” full color beauty is created by more than 300 artists and covers every kid friendly theme under the rainbow - fairytales, dreams, science fiction, comedy and more.
Yet another award winner, this magazine focuses on science, nature and the environment - all for preschoolers in mind. If your child is asking, "What is an insect?”; "What do animals eat?”; "Why do birds migrate?”; "What’s out in space?" Click is the magazine that will give them the answers.
(English and Spanish 2+)
Attention all you future chefs out there! ChopChop its all about kid cooking bliss! (At my school of English in Belgium, cooking was hands down the kids’ favorite way to learn!)
Winner of the prestigious 2013 James Beard Foundation Award for Publication of the Year, ChopChop is filled with kid-friendly (yet [mostly] nutritious) recipes that are yummy, easy on the family grocery budget - and ethnically diverse. Cherry on the cake, kiddos are also getting kid-friendly explanations on the basics of cooking and kitchen science. (Cooking is also great for building math skills!)
(English and Spanish, 6 months+)
The 2018 Parents' Choice Gold Award Winner, Babybug is jam packed with stories, poems, captivating photographs and illustrations. Perfect for reading out loud or simply savoring visually together, this magazine is designed for the little guys. There are no ads, nontoxic ink on sturdy coated paper, rounded corners and no staples. A sample of the magazine can be downloaded at the link provided.
(English and Spanish, 3+)
Brought to us by the makers of Babybug and also a 2018 Parents' Choice Gold Award Winner, this is another great magazine to inspire the love of reading. Ladybug highlights a collection of stories, poems, songs and games, written by well known children’s authors and illustrated by award winning artists. A downloadable sample magazine is also found at the link.
Chirp features stories, puzzles, and activities reviewed by a parent advisory board and curriculum experts across North America. When ready, you can graduate from Chirp to their sister magazine OwlKids.
Another magazine with baby safe design - rounded corners, stitched binding, and washable, tear-resistant pages, Highlights Hello supports early language development and encourages parent/child bonding time. all while providing useful tips and support for new parents.
Once children graduate from Highlights Hello, they can turn to High Five for simple stories, activities, games and even recipes. Complete with My First Hidden PicturesTM , the celebrated puzzles many of us grew up with (including myself) are sure to delight.
(Spanish & English, ages 2+)
The Highlights family of magazines so many of us have grown up with is now available in Spanish - and English.
High Five Bilingüe magazine has 14 pages in Spanish, 14 in English, and 8 in both languages. Designed for preschoolers and emergent and beginning readers, High Five Bilingüe's stories, poems, puzzles, and activities build home-language and new-language literacy. Click the link to order a free sample from the publisher, available at the time of writing this blog.
What are you magazine favorites - in any language? We’d love to share them with others!