Best educational magazines for children

Child reading a newspaper
Looking for a fun- AND fact-packed publication for your child? The 13 we've picked offer puzzles, original artwork, fiction, science projects to complete, history, hands-on making and more – and there isn't a plastic cover-mount in sight. Want to encourage your primary-school child to read regularly? Keep them supplied with new issues!

National Geographic Kids

Aimed at children aged 8 to 12, NG KiDS is designed to get kids reading and excited atbout the world around them. It's packed with wildlife, history and geography facts and beautiful photography, and the bite-sized, bright presentation is perfect for non-fiction enthusiasts. We particularly love the weird and wacky 'did you know?' information (though your child will be quoting it back at you for weeks!).

Frequency: published 12 times a year

Cost: £3.30 per issue; buy single issues at newsstands nationwide.

Subscription offer: prices start at £20 a year for the digital-only subscription.

ANORAK

Anorak Magazine, the ‘happy mag for kids’ is aimed at boys and girls aged between 6 and 12 years old (there's loads to read in each issue, so proficient readers will get the most out of it). A variety of subjects are covered, with beautiful, full-colour contemporary illustrations, board games, puzzles and drawing suggestions and projects included. Definitely not a five-minute read destined for the recycling, this is a magazine kids will keep and refer back to.

Frequency: published four times a year

Cost: £6 per issue; buy single issues at newsstands, bookshops and in museum shops.

Subscription offer: get four issues and home delivery for £25 with a Direct Debit subscription.

The Phoenix Comic

Advert-free, gloriously silly, seriously funny, beautifully drawn... we're very big fans of the Phoenix (and that's just the adults). The serialised stories will keep readers guessing week after week, the vibrant colours and super storylines will attract even the most reluctant readers and the artwork detail deserves to be examined with a magnifying glass. Tearing the wrapper off a subscription copy on a Friday afternoon after school is the best start to the weekend ever for some kids – or so we're told. See a free Phoenix Comic sample issue online.

Frequency: published weekly

Cost: £2.99 per issue; buy single issues at newsagents nationwide, selected branches of Waitrose and some independent bookshops. Also available as a digital magazine to read on an iPad.

Subscription offer: get four issues for £1, then pay £28.99 every three months with a Direct Debit subscription.

First News

Get your child into the habit of reading news and being aware of what's happening in the world with the UK's only newspaper for young people, First News. Packed with news, photographs interesting stories from the UK and around the word, your child will get a real understanding of current affairs, explained clearly and concisely in age-appropriate language. It's not all serious news, either – there are puzzles, competitions, crazy but true stories, celebrity interviews, sport articles and more to browse to read. Hugely popular with primary schools, First News also offers online headlines for newshounds who want to keep up-to-date every day. See a free First News preview issue online.

Frequency: published weekly

Cost: £1.50 per issue; buy single issues at newsagents nationwide. Also available as a digital edition to read on a tablet (24 issues for £26.99).

Subscription offer: £1 for three issues then £16.49 every three months with a Direct Debit subscription.

OKIDO

Designed for children aged 3 to 8, with a focus on science and arts, OKIDO is incredibly colourful and packed with hands-on making activities, as well as informative. Practical 'makes' like story dice or skeleton puppets, printed on cardboard-stock paper, are included with the issue, as well as colouring and doodling pages, stories and poems. The book-quality illustrations will be pored over by Reception and KS1 children, too.

Frequency: published six times a year

Cost: £4 per issue; buy single issues at selected bookstores and shops.

Subscription offer: a year's Direct Debit subscription is £41.99, including free delivery.

The Loop

The Loop is a magazine for "curious kids" aged 8 to 12 that aims to stretch their imagination and extend their thinking and making skills. We love the thought-provoking images and topics (feminism, the plight of bees, contemporary art and tips from kids' authors, to name but a few). Tie-in lesson plans are also available to download if you want to explore a topic further with your child.

Frequency: published three times a year

Cost: £4.50 per issue; buy single issues at selected bookstores or online.

Storytime

No adverts and no plastic toys – Storytime is just a collection of fairy tales, folk tales, fables, myths, legends, poetry and book extracts to read with your child, complemented by full-colour illustrations and story-time game and activity suggestions. Perfect for reading with younger children, and a very light and portable way to carry hours of entertainment in your handbag! Download free Storytime activities and recipes from the website.

Frequency: published 12 times a year

Cost: £3.99 per issue; buy single issues at WH Smiths, supermarkets and newsagents nationwide.

Subscription offer: get 12 issues of Storytime for £33.99 with a Direct Debit subscription.

AQUILA

With factual articles, puzzles and fun activities to expand general knowledge, AQUILA is aimed at inquisitive, independent readers aged 8-12. A new topic is presented every month, as well as articles about our world, historical figures, science, ethical issues, original fiction and a very absorbing readers' letters page. There's tons to read (and think about) in every issue, and it's all clearly and beautifully presented, with no advertising. Get a feel for AQUILA's content by looking through the sample content online.

Frequency: published 12 times a year (July-August is a summer double issue)

AQUILA is only available on subscription.

Subscription offer: an annual subscription is £50.

Junior Puzzles

Junior Puzzles
A mix of puzzles, games and fun designed to suit a broad age range. Familiar puzzles include crosswords, Kriss Kross, riddles, wordsearches, Brick Trick, Hidden Words, Spot The Difference, Sudoku and more; 100 puzzles are included in each Junior Puzzles issue.

Frequency: published six times a year

Cost: £2.99 per issue; buy single issues at WH Smith.

Subscription offer: £17.87 every 6 issues.

Story Box, Adventure Box and Discovery Box

Each of the Box magazines has been designed to appeal to different ages: Story Box is for 3-6 year olds (to be read with a parent), Adventure Box is for 6-9 year olds (you can choose to receive a CD with each issue, so your child can listen to the stories as they read along) and Discovery Box is for children aged 9 to 12.

With a variety of writing styles and a mixture of fun facts, riddles, cartoons, experiments and games, each magazine offers a great monthly mix for a specific age and stage of development.

Frequency: published ten times a year

Story Box, Adventure Box and Discovery Box are only available on subscription.

Subscription offer: an annual subscription to each magazine is £50.

Whizz Pop Bang!

A kids’ science magazine aimed at making science fun and engaging for 6-11 year old children (and their parents!), Whizz Pop Bang! is aligned to the UK national curriculum and packed with fantastic facts, hands-on experiments, bite-sized information, puzzles and eye-catching illustrations. Completely ad-free, it's fun as well as very informative. See sample pages from Whizz Pop Bang! online.

Frequency: monthly

Whizz Pop Bang! is only available by postal subscription.

Subscription offer: an annual subscription is £34.99.

The Week Junior

Aimed at 8 to 14 year olds, The Week Junior explains news and events from a child’s perspective. From news to nature, science to geography, and film to coding, it covers a huge range of topics and keeps kids in the loop about what's happening in the world in an engaging, age-appropriate way. See sample pages from The Week Junior online.

Frequency: weekly

Cost: £1.99 per issue; The Week Junior is available in major retailers and by subscription.

Subscription offer: £18.99 for 13 issues.

Amazing!

Wonderfully bright and bold illustrations and a comic-book style help to present National Curriculum topics in an engaging, memorable way for kids aged 7 to 11 and our testers were hooked. Everything from food tech to geography, poetry and times tables is covered in Amazing!, and there are puzzles, wordsearches and activities galore. A brilliant (and educational) read. See sample pages from Amazing! online.

Frequency: monthly

Cost: issues are £6.99 each; Amazing! is available in major retailers and by postal subscription.

Subscription offer: an annual subscription is £49.

Scoop

A great mix of styles and subjects, Scoop offers stories, reviews, jokes, makes, poetry, quizzes, recipes, history, comic strips and more in each packed issue and the words are perfectly complemented by beautiful illustrations. Contributors include Laura Dockrill ad Neil Gaiman and there's loads to read in every issue. See sample pages from Scoop online.

Frequency: ten issues a year

Scoop is available only by postal subscription.

Subscription offer: an annual Direct Debit subscription is £42.99.