Press Room

June 26, 2020

eMagazines and TIME for Kids partner to make digital library accessible, engaging and free.

According to UNESCO, more than 1. 5 billion children have been affected by school closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As children and their teachers switched to an exclusively virtual classroom model, TIME for Kids enlisted the help of eMagazines to create a mobile-ready digital version of their library, fully accessible to any teachers and students who need it.

“Prior to COVID-19 we were in the early stages of designing a new experience for Time for Kids with a focus on accessibility, but this situation required an urgent solution to a massive shift in learning and education. In less than 10 days, the team at eMagazines worked hand in hand with our team to ensure we were able to reach children through their teachers, parents and families in a safe, easy to use format that was accessible without an internet connection,” says Matt Stevenson, VP of progress marketing at TIME. “To date we have seen nearly 350,000 families from all over the world registered through the free portal and look forward to continuing our mission to make sure that kids can access fact-based, trustworthy journalism that puts the world into age-appropriate context.”

“The project was a great fit for eMagazines because we specialize in cutting down barriers to online content and delivering beautiful brand experiences while maintaining security,” says eMagazines founder Andrew Degenholtz. The company currently delivers vibrant mobile editions of 150 of the world’s most respected magazine publications that, like TIME, work to produce ethically sourced content and reliable reporting.

eMagazines’ software takes in PDFs and seamlessly reflows them so that kids and teachers can easily read the magazine content on a desktop or a mobile device, which Cal State LA media psychologist Dr. Kaveri Subrahmanyam says is especially important now. 

“The main thing is to recognize that a lot of children from low income households and minority-led homes only have access to mobile devices,” according to Dr. Subrahmanyam. 

This could mean an unreliable internet connection, so making content available offline goes a long way towards accessibility for many kids. Thanks to eMagazines’ use of progressive web app technology, the digital TIME for Kids library is fully downloadable and doesn’t require an app or complicated sign-in. Once a child or teacher downloads the digital magazine, it’s always with them whether they have an internet connection or not. Each edition in the digital library is also equipped with audio capabilities so students who are either pre-reading age or have special learning challenges can easily access the material.   

Dr. Subrahmanyam adds that when publishers “engage children to think deeply and use academic reading strategies,” as TIME for Kids does, it increases the success of learning from digital materials.

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