The Sunday Times has created an educational supplement to support parents during the COVID-19 lockdown. Entitled ‘The Children’s Times’, the weekly 12-page supplement is available in both print and online, and aims to keep children learning and entertained while at home.
Each edition contains numerous activities and exercises and illustrations for primary school children, along with notes from principals and teachers for parents. This week sees the news brand partner with Barnardos on a special spring edition, while previous charity partnerships included the ISPCC and Niall ‘Bressie’ Breslin’s charity ‘A Lust for Life’ which focuses on mental wellness.
The theme this week for the Barnardo’s edition is ‘Growing and Changing’ and looks at the arrival of spring, nature and wildlife. The teachers have curated a range of related activities and exercises such as plant and germination tasks, counting in nature and creative writing. Many of the activities are aimed at helping children to bring the outside in during lockdown, and look to marvel at the changing of the season. The edition will also feature information on Barnardo’s parent line which is aimed at supporting parents during this difficult time.
The Children’s Times, which has been created internally for the Sunday Times by the STUDIO team, will run until mid-May.
Frank Fitzgibbon, Ireland Editor of the Sunday Times said: “While our primary responsibility is reporting and analysing the historic events we are now witnessing, we are also conscious that life for our readers has changed considerably particularly for those with children who are now working from home. The creation of The Children’s Times is designed to put both fun and structure around home learning and the reaction from readers indicates that this is greatly appreciated.”
Karen Price, Group Creative Director at News Ireland, added: “At a time when parents are fretting about trying to juggle work and their children’s education, The Sunday Times wanted to help ease the pressure by creating The Children’s Times. Each week focuses on a different theme, such as mental wellness, and is designed to have longevity beyond Sunday with ideas to keep children busy all week.”
Suzanne Connolly, Barnardos CEO, commented: “We are delighted to be partnering with the Sunday Times on the special spring edition of ‘The Children’s Times’. Barnardos have shared some wonderful Mind, Body and Heart exercises for children that will not only keep them entertained, but will also calm any nerves or worries they may be feeling during lockdown. At Barnardos we believe that childhood lasts a lifetime, and know that while things are feeling uncertain at the moment it’s the fun activities and time spent with family that children should remember about the Covid-19 pandemic.”