Francois Dufuor, France editor of My Weekly, Mon Petit Quotidien, Mon Quotidien, l´Actu and l´Actu-Eco, explained that the way to reach young readers is through their parents. Dufour states, "They are ready to pay for education."
He mentions that most parents read the child's newspaper every day. Using this information, they have developed different strategies to satisfy both younger and older readers. In certain papers directed toward a younger audience, stories are written about bigger news stories so parents can not only read for themselves, but also share this information with their children.
My Weekly takes another approach in order to help readers with their English. The newspaper explains what happens during the week in English and offers a tool for learning the English words within the last page of the paper.
Another strategy is to encourage their children readers to come in and become "editors for a day". Here they can make suggestions for the paper. For young aspiring journalist, they also offer "Young journalist workshops" twice a week that parents can pay for children to come in and learn about becoming a journalist.
They have also introduced a radio program that comes on every Saturday. The show is set up to reach out to parents once again by answering basic childrens' questions for the news of the week. This is another tool that connects the parents with their children.
Reaching out through iPhone applications has been another successful strategy as well. Children can view the newspaper on their parents iPhone.
Lisa Blakeway, two-time World Young Reader Prize winner and executive director, EISH (Educational Improvement and Study Help), South Africa, speaks of the ways that parents can utilize the newspaper as a fun place for activities for young readers, using a parents’ guide called Using the News to Connect with your Children.
“What we’re doing is developing a parents’ guide that can be used in the world to encourage parent readers to spend quality time with their children while interacting with the newspaper,” Blakeway said.
The guide is divided into four sections of activities for young readers of different ages: young children (ages 4-11), primary children (ages 8-11), pre-teens (ages 12-15) and young adults (ages 16-18).
For young children, some of the activities would include looking at pictures, then covering them up to see what they remember from the picture. Parents could cover up the words in a comic and have their children make up stories of their own to go with the comic. Another activity would be to play “I Spy…” a word, picture or object to get them looking through the newspaper.
Activities for primary children are playing word games such as finding words that start with a certain letter or having the children cut out pictures of celebrities and asking them questions like, “What would you say if you met them?” This would provide the opportunity for the parent and child to talk about family values as well.
Parents can teach pre-teens how to interact with the newspaper by setting aside specific times and days for about five minutes, allowing their children to go through the paper and see what they find interesting. The parent could then ask why they chose those stories from the newspaper, which will help the parents get to know their children on a different level.
For young adults, the parents could ask them what it would be like to live away from home. Then, they could go through the newspaper and find career possibilities and the cost of living in terms of apartments, food, electricity, etc.
Blakeway explained that it should not come across as a newspaper education time, but something that works for particular families and newspapers in the home.