Newest Review: ... and 'Captain Cook'. The most recent magazine is themed around 'The Equator'. **Content and Size** The magazine doesn't look very su... more
Fun, Educational and Advert Free!
Member Name: houseofberries
Date: 04/06/13, updated on 29/12/13 (136 review reads)
Advantages: No advertising, educational, fun, lots of puzzles and no cheap plastic toy
Disadvantages: Not all sections of the magazine may appeal to your child
I first heard of Aquila Magazine when a member of my family mentioned it to me. She'd been talking to a friend who's son really enjoyed it. She heard about it and thought of my eldest boy, this is how my subscription came about.
**What is Aquila Magazine?**
It's a magazine designed for children from 8 - 12 years of age. Aquila has been around for 20 years at the time of writing this.
Aquila state that their magazine is different from other magazines currently on the market. They say 'want our readers to LOVE the magazine but we do not just seek to entertain and gratify them'.
From the Aquila website:
Investigates a fresh new topic each month
Encourages children to take time to focus and concentrate
Involves its readers and inspires achievement
Develops ethical awareness
Contains no adverts or media hype
It certainly doesn't contain any form of advertising, which is so refreshing, very unlike other children's magazines. The only slight hint of it is the odd competition, the products seem very well chosen however and in keeping with the educational ethos of the magazine.
Each magazine we've had focuses on a topic, examples include 'Big Cats', 'Sport' and 'Captain Cook'. The most recent magazine is themed around 'The Equator'.
**Content and Size**
The magazine doesn't look very substantial on first inspection, the most recent edition is 24 pages long including the back page. Flicking through it quickly reveals how full this magazine is with information - it's rammed from cover to cover, there's hardly any blank space to be seen. Of course no adverts means it's all pure content.
It's brightly coloured with a gloss finish, it certainly doesn't look like it's been produced in a low value manner.
The content itself is very varied, I like that it crosses so many types of learning. There's hands-on, an example from the most recent magazine includes making an Armillary Sphere. Templates, full instructions and background on the Armillary sphere also included. There are even links to find out more information if you or your child wanted to.
Puzzles, usually topic themed are included in each magazine, such as quizzes, anagrams, maths problems, picture related and word puzzles.
In the most recent magazine there's a double page spread on different types of Lemurs from Madagascar, this includes pictures, a nice balanced amount of information and 'did you know' style facts dotted about the page.
There's also a science related article on sustainable farming in Trindad. Another article about the equator, covering a large cross section of information including what it is, which countries and oceans the line runs through, people, plants and animals. I love how the information is broken down into bite sized sections so your child can dip into any part of it.
There's a double page story which runs on to the next episode, historical articles, a fun with maths section and readers letters. There's so much more and it can of course change from edition to edition. Truly jam packed.
**Keeping little minds busy**
My eldest boy is 8, he loves receiving this magazine through the post. Some parts of the magazine are perhaps a little challenging for him, he asks questions if he doesn't understand. It's not a magazine that he takes to bed with him to relax, he has other books that serve this purpose. It's something that he enjoys reading in the day.
The Big Cats edition was taken into School at one point as part of it correlated with the topic being studied in class. He stood in front of the class and proudly did a mini presentation holding up the magazine to show pictures.
He loves the puzzles and always turns straight to the jokes that readers have sent in on the back page, these are of course told over more than once to anyone who's available!
I've not seen Aquila available in any stores. You can purchase on-line from their website:
http://www.aquila.co.uk/ if you have any questions you can also contact them on 01323 431313.
In the UK a four month subscription is currently £20 or £45 for an annual subscription.
Aquila recommend trying the four month subscription first to see if your child enjoys it. This is what I did, I've since taken out the yearly subscription.
Back issues can also be ordered, really useful if you're researching and learning a particular topic.
I'm really pleased with the magazine, I love the lack of advertising and cheap tacky toys pinned to the front. My son has widened his knowledge in many areas, he doesn't read it cover to cover, but I'm sure there will be parts of the magazine that he'll enjoy reading when he's a little older. He's keeping the copies so he can dip back into them later on if he wants to.
Not bedtime reading - gets the mind too busy, but great for dipping into during the day. Highly recommended.
Summary: Fun, educational magazine with lots of puzzles and crammed with information