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Supernova 

the mag for curious kids!

Supernova, is a children’s magazine of the highest educational standard dedicated to making curious kids aware of issues which affect them, their community and their environment.  The magazine helps to boost reading skills, concentration span and general knowledge, giving your child the edge they need and a strong sense of self in an immense universe.

Supernova, the mag for curious kids. Cover Vol 9.1
Supernova, the mag for curious kids. Cover Vol 8.6
Supernova, the mag for curious kids. Cover Vol 8.4
Supernova, the mag for curious kids. Cover Vol 8.6

Subscribe to Supernova magazine

Sign up for a one year subscription to Supernova magazine and get six issues sent directly to your postal address. Give the gift that keeps on giving and build a reading culture in your home.

Our content

The content of Supernova, the mag for curious kids is fun and informative, focusing on topics such as ecology, natural sciences, technology, history and world cultures, as well as arts, sports and social issues. There is something in it for all children.

 

Supernova, the mag for curious kids. Nature Spread

Nature

Every issue of Supernova features information, activities and other great content to do with the natural world we live in. The magazine offers young readers the opportunity to get to know more about the world around us and the creatures we share this beautiful home with.

Supernova, the mag for curious kids. Science Spread

Science

Supernova is all about science that is both educational and fun. Experiments, activities, and articles give curious kids the perfect introduction to the wonderful world of science.

Supernova, the mag for curious kids. Puzzles Spread

Puzzles

We give our young readers a bunch of brain-exercising and boredom-busting puzzles to work through in every issue. Our wide variety of puzzles will keep young minds busy for ages!

Supernova, the mag for curious kids. Culture Spread

Culture

The magazine features content about the many different and beautiful cultures of South Africa and the rest of the world. Supernova provides a safe space for tolerance and acceptance of all people, religions, and cultures.

Supernova, the mag for curious kids. Activities and crafts Spread

Activities and crafts

Supernova is jam-packed with all kinds of activities from DIY projects to science experiments and everything in between. Every issue contains fun activities that the whole family can get involved in, because we believe that curious kids learn best by doing.

Supernova, the mag for curious kids. Comics Spread

Comics

Who said that science and art don’t go hand-in-hand? Supernova has fun with awesome comic for our readers to enjoy. Comics increase a child’s engagement with the magazine’s content. 

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More about Supernova, the mag for curious kids

We work every day to create a solid bridge between big ideas and young minds. Everything we do at Supernova magazine is based on a set of guiding principles, philosophies and an understanding of our audience.

A selection of Supernova magazines
Supernova for literacy

South Africa is in a deep literacy crisis. In 2016 the results of the Progress in International Reading Literacy (PIRLS) report laid bare the dire state of our reading culture in South Africa. We were placed last out of all 50 countries in the study and 78% of Grade 4 children were not able to reach the Lowest Benchmark, which means that they cannot read for meaning or answer basic questions from the text provided in their mother tongue. Only 0.2% of the children were able to achieve the Advanced International Benchmark. (Citation below)

 We were not so shocked to hear these figures.

Since its inception in 2005, BK Publishing has known about this problem and has been dedicated to addressing the need for appropriate, affordable and accessible books and magazines. Certainly, the education sector and publishing industry suffer from severe challenges and shortfalls in establishing a reading culture.

As a result, we launched Supernova, the mag for curious kids in 2011 as our tool for addressing the lack of appropriate reading material and for bridging the gap between the life-changing world of literature and the children of South Africa. From a literacy point of view, our greatest hope is for our readers to continue their reading habits beyond the magazine as life-long-readers.

Our philosophy

Supernova magazine is based on the philosophy of deep ecology and life-long-learning. Everything is connected, every one of our thoughts, decisions and actions has an effect on our environment. In this ever-changing world, we as humans need to learn to engage with, and understand our environment and the world we live in. We need to look at how our actions affect it and question how we interact with it. But most importantly, we need to stop seeing ourselves as outsiders, or separate from our environment, and rather as an integral part of it.  

A subtle approach

This philosophy is not explicit in the magazine. We prefer to allow children to make the logical link as they read the articles and see how nature, technology and humanity are deeply linked.

We want to see our readers unleash their power and potential to bring about real change in the world. Very soon, they will grow up and be the ones responsible for our environment and society. We should urgently give them the right tools and inspiration to do this.

We know our readers

Thanks to our subscription model of distribution and our interactions at events, we know a lot about our readers and how they engage with the magazine. This understanding has a big impact on our publishing decisions.

 Ages 8-9 – Avid young readers

  • Supernova magazine’s youngest readers start at age 8. These are usually children who have already developed two to three years of reading skills and are thirsty for non-fiction content.

Ages 10-12 – Targeted readers

  • We design our topics and the look and feel of Supernova magazine for a target age of 10-12 years old. These pre-teens are most at risk of dropping their hard-earned reading habits due to social, school and sport obligations and certainly, excessive screen time. Finding the time to read is one thing, finding something worthwhile to read is something else. Supernova is typically read in multiple sittings and requires low commitment, all the while still being highly engaging.

Ages 13-15 – Reluctant older readers

  • Supernova allows a space for young teens to read for fun and without shame. Because the topics are varied and challenging and the articles well-researched, older kids can use them as a basis for school research projects.
We publish for reluctant readers

Supernova is designed as a low-commitment reading option. It’s quite a difficult task to pick up a new novel or series of books, however it is not so difficult to pick up a magazine, open it at any page, and find something palatable and quick to read.  

The magazine is structured in a way that increases in difficulty as you progress through the articles. Starting with easier, bite-sized chucks of information and progressing to more intense high-grade articles which pose important questions and tackle complicated topics.

Our writers are all equipped with our strict Editorial Style Guide, which follows the plain language movement. Our writers and editors work on each article to increase engagement and information retention.

The best tool for getting a child to read is to give them a book or magazine that speaks to them and takes them seriously.

We take our readers very seriously

Children take themselves seriously and so do we. Any child who picks up a copy of Supernova magazine will immediately know that this was created for them.

While each article is coated with an appropriate amount of fun, the topics are never dumbed down. For example, we introduce a lot of high level vocabulary, but make sure our sentences are easy to read and understand.

Our greatest joy is to hear feedback from parents who say, “I read you article on fracking, or artificial intelligence, or climate change – and now I get it!”

We even hear from parents who read the magazine before their children do, so that they are on the same page when their kids ask them difficult questions!

We offer personalised subscriptions

A special thing happens when a child receives their own magazine in the post with their name on it.

  • Firstly, it’s theirs and they buy into it. There is so much research that shows how important it is to have books and magazines of your own, in your own bedroom.
  • Secondly, your child won’t miss an issue and we make sure it gets to them.
  • Thirdly, it creates a link between us and you. A subscription offers us the opportunity to know who our readers are, as opposed to the traditional retail option, which is very impersonal. We know their names, how old they are, what province they live in, what types of schools they go to and that helps us make a better product.
  • Furthermore, it offers you a direct link to us – you can share your feedback or concerns and we can help you with any queries you may have on how to work with the magazine. We enjoy building relationships with our readers and their parents.
We create objects of value

We value high production quality. Each magazine is crafted over a four-month period by a team of over 12 people. Every article is carefully researched, every illustration is lovingly crafted, and every page is expertly layed-out by talented local writers, illustrators and designers. Our production management team checks every detail before print.

From the topics we include, to the way we structure information on the page, to the paper we print on, and the subscription method of distribution, every part of the publishing process is a crafted as a work of art. 

While each article is coated with an appropriate amount of fun, the topics are never dumbed down. We introduce a lot of high-level vocabulary, but make sure our sentences are easy to read and understand.

A magazine for the whole family

Our greatest joy is to hear feedback from parents who say, “I read you article on fracking, or artificial intelligence, or climate change – and now I get it!”  We even hear from parents who read the magazine before their children do, so that they are on the same page when their kids ask them difficult questions!

We focus on the print magazine

Since BK Publishing started in 2005, we have seen the move to digital take over all aspects of life. Moreover, we have seen children’s adoption, consumption and contribution to online content increase dramatically. Instead of seeing this as a threat, we embrace it and make sure that our digital offering is on par with other children’s magazines.  

However, we’ve also consistently seen that sales of our digital magazine has never gone any higher than 1% of our total sales. Likewise, discussions with other publishers around the world have shown similar trends. In short, given the choice, children still value a printed magazine and we expect this to continue for years to come.

 

Supernova in the classroom and at home

The applications for the magazine are as wide as the topics we cover. From using the articles and activities as a basis for school or home projects to simply getting kids to read for fun, there is no end to the educational benefits of Supernova. It is a brilliant resource for the classroom, an indispensable title for all school libraries, but it is at its most powerful when read at home and discussed at the dinner table.

Click here to follow our blog and read articles, tips and resources for the classroom and for homeschoolers.

What Our
Readers Say

Every magazine has a lengthy feature on one of our amazing animals (or sometimes about the earth or space etc) and this one was all about wild dogs which my kiddo’s loved to learn about. This is of course not close to the scope of it… you’d have to buy the magazine to really get what I’m talking about but I’ll show you a few of the highlights for me.

Read more:

Awesome SA Kids Magazine Supernova!

KraftiMama

Blogger, Kraftimama.com

Ever since I was introduced to your magazine in 2016, I have loved it. The children in my class look forward to our monthly delivery and read every word. They are particularly useful for project work as the information is suitable and relevant for them. I am so grateful for the boredom busters you have made available online. I send them to all the families in our small school and they love them. So many self-directed projects from the children have emerged from these. Thank you again and keep up the good work.

Kym van Straaten

Randburg Montessori Principal

I recently discovered these and devoured them myself first, being the bookworm that I am. What fun to look through the pages and see colourful pictures printed on very good quality paper, full of wholesome content!

Heideli Loubser

Homeschooler's Life

Supernova always has such interesting facts in it. You can pick it up and just find something there that’s cool.

Christopher (13)

Supernova subscriber

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