Newsika: Daily News for Kids. READ. EXPLORE. LEARN.

App review by
Dana Anderson, Common Sense Media
Newsika: Daily News for Kids. READ. EXPLORE. LEARN. App Poster Image

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Build kids' media literacy, but watch out for bias, privacy.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

Kids can learn about current events, political leaders, pop culture, science, sports, and more. By reading the daily news articles and fun facts, kids can learn a little about a lot as they grow in cultural understanding and global awareness.

Ease of Play

Very easy to use. New users set age and grade level so articles shown are at the appropriate reading level.

Violence & Scariness

No violent content observed during this review. News is selected for kids grades 3 through 8. Newsika indicates that articles are curated and written by educators and journalists who review it for safety.

Sexy Stuff

No sexy stuff observed during this review. News is selected for kids grades 3 through 8. Newsika indicates that articles are curated and written by educators and journalists who review it for safety.

Language
Consumerism

Entertainment, sports, celebrities, and consumer topics covered. Examples: news about Disney World, pro athletes, new movies.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

No drinking, drugs, or smoking observed during this review. News is selected for kids grades 3 through 8. Newsika indicates that articles are curated and written by educators and journalists who review it for safety.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Newsika: Daily News for Kids. READ. EXPLORE. LEARN. is an iPad-only daily news app for kids in grades 3 to 8. News articles are limited to 70 words and include bright, eye-catching photos and graphics. Thirty-plus articles each day, curated by journalists and educators for kid-friendly content, are set to grade-appropriate reading levels. Along with the news snippets, kids can read fun facts. Some of the articles have a consumer bent and/or bias, so parents may want to preview articles or discuss them with their kids. Note: Kids are required to provide quite a lot of personal information, including age, birth date, grade, and name of school attending, and the privacy policy states that the developer can sell that information. Read the app's privacy policy to find out more about the types of information collected and shared.

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What's it about?

Tap "Get Started" and sign up as a new user on NEWSIKA: DAILY NEWS FOR KIDS. READ. EXPLORE. LEARN. by entering personal information, including the name of the school your kid attends. Swipe up to look through articles. Tap the star to bookmark the article, tap the heart to like it, or tap "share" to share it via text, email, and more. Tap Fun Facts on the side of the screen to read today's fun facts.

Is it any good?

This image-heavy, text-light news source gives kids just enough daily news to help them stay in the know, but privacy concerns, consumerism, and bias stunt its value. Articles in Newsika: Daily News for Kids. Read. Explore. Learn. include sports, science, world news, entertainment news, politics, and more. The fun facts are interesting, and it's cool that kids can easily like, bookmark, and share them (as well as articles) with others. Kids get a star point for every article or fun fact that they read.

Two concerns: Sometimes the articles stray from straight news-based stories into promotional and political commentary. Even though the app states that it's ad-free, at the time of this review a number of articles included consumer topics, such as special Disney World tickets and kid-targeted movies. Around the time of the presidential election, a few articles included phrases that many people might have found politically biased; those articles were not labeled as opinion. Also, it's not clear why it requires kids to provide an unusual amount of personal information, including full date of birth, city, and name of school attending. Grade level would seem to suffice to set the articles' reading level.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about why it's important to know what's going on in the world and how Newsika: Daily News for Kids. READ. EXPLORE. LEARN. might be a resource. Talk to your kids about your daily news habits and encourage them to learn a little about their local and global community every day.

  • Discuss the difference between unbiased news and opinion. If you or your kid notices any content that takes a particular political point of view, talk about how it could be presented in a more neutral way.

  • Encourage your kid to share the daily fun facts that they find interesting. Share some with them from other sources that you find interesting!

App details

For kids who love news and social studies

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