For the past few years, Abby has been saying that she wants to be a scientist in the future. When she caught sight of the TV series Messy goes to OKIDO showing on CBeebies (it was Clay's turn for the TV), which is a science-educational program aimed for 3 to 5 year olds, she really liked it, and thought that the series should really be showing on CBBC because she has been learning new things from it. So when we were given the opportunity to review the original of the series - the OKIDO magazine, I knew we should go for it.
OKIDO Magazine (£4 per bi-monthly issue; arts and science) is aimed for children 3 to 8 year olds. They are designed to engage young children in scientific discovery in a fun and creative way. Each issue contains 48 pages of full colour illustrations, 8 pages of pull-out doodle activities and also comes with a free pull-out cardboard game/ activity. We were sent the previous issue Television, and the current issue Food, to review.
|Left: Issue Food Right: Issue Television|
|Left: One of the pull-out doodle activities page|
Right: a funny comic strip
|A fun recipe in each issue|
|Abby was very amused with this experiment!|
|Pull-out cardboard activity from the issue Television. Readers can make their own TV with changing background|
Only an A4 paper is needed!
There are all sorts of activities inside each issue, such as the usual colouring, drawing and spot the differences, stories related to the theme and arts and craft projects. But there are also other things such as recipes, comic strips, illustrated song or poem, games, etc etc. The magazine is made with good quality thick paper, and the magazine itself is so thick that the word "book" kept popping up in my head.
I'm most impressed with all the facts that they are teaching the children throughout the whole magazine, using all the different and fun activities as a medium. Within one issue, the kids have learned about why we have to eat and where the food travels to inside our body (it didn't mention how food leaves our body, but Abby HAD to teach Clay that most important information. During dinner time of course), why water is the best drink and broccoli a super and yummy food (through a fun, cutely illustrated and well written poem!), what a basic food cycle looks like, where some of the food comes from, and what school meals are like in different countries!
There are a lot of scientific facts about food out there, so I can imagine how difficult it is to choose what to feature in the magazine. All of them are brilliant, good for children to know, and are all well presented with cute illustrations and simple writing to keep the children interested.
In the Television issues, the kids also learned something more complicated - what's inside a television (physically) and how does it work (from filming a show to broadcasting). Both can be quite complicated to explain to children, but they managed and I couldn't explain them easier to the kids than the OKIDO magazine.
Implementing with Experiments:
After learning something new, it's good to implement the knowledge with experiments! The Food issue taught the children how to make food more fun to eat. Usually the craft projects will be theme related as well, but because the Food issue goes over the Christmas period, kids were given some fun Christmas crafts projects to do instead. Each issue comes with a recipe already, so that's another thing for the kids to do that's relevant.
I like the experiments and craft projects in the television issue more as the kids can make their own television box and a flip-o-rama! Both are fun to make and the kids can see how 2 images blends together into one. You can even discuss about how human eyes works with this experiment!
As Clay has only just started reading on his own, and there is quite a lot more words (although simple to read) in the OKIDO magazine than the usual children magazines, children his age will definitely need some assistance. The parent can do so, or you can leave it to do older sibling like me. Abby has no problem going through the magazines, and it was lovely to watch her read to Clay and do the activities with him. They were amusing themselves with further discussions from what they've learned from the magazines, and I really like that because it means that the magazine has inspired them and created further interest. So the learning didn't end with the magazine.
We all love the illustrations, done by various artists, funny jokes/ poems, interesting experiments and activities. I especially love the pull-out cardboard crafts (make your own TV set and hang up counting down baubles and do the activity behind each day). You can really tell that the people behind OKIDO magazine have put in a lot of effort in each issue, gone through a lot of brainstorming to decide what they should include, and how they should present it to make it fun, easier to understand and interesting.
OKIDO magazine subscription:
I think that it's worth subscribing to the OKIDO magazines because children learn a lot from each magazine while having fun as well. As a bi-monthly magazine, there are 6 issues in each year and if you go for their 1 year Christmas Gift subscription (£24 for 7 issues), you can get the current Food issue for free, presented in a Christmas pack as a Christmas present, and then the rest of the issues sent throughout 2016. There are bundles and back issues available as well, and you can pick the topic that your child will be interested most.
It's definitely a magazine worth discovering!