Two Harvard alumni have begun a new magazine Kids because they decided that "children's magazines simply aren't taking care of the kids."
The first issue of Kids, which is written and illustrated entirely by children, appeared last week. It is the creation of James M. Robinson '61, a former fifth-grade teacher, and of Jenette Kahn '68, a free-lance art critic.
"The first priority," Robinson said in an interview last night, "is that the magazine must inspire the kids to read and write, to do their own thing."
The 48-page magazine contains poems, plays, stories, photographs, and drawings by children. "What we're aiming for is the type of article that says 'this is what I'm like," Robinson said.
"We found out that most contributors range from five to 15 years old. Those with the most active involvement range from seven to 12," he said. He added that the older writers seem to write for the younger audience.
Two different children are selected as guest editors for each issue, and hold veto power over every item in the publication.
Kids will be published ten times per year, once a month during school and once in the summer. The magazine will be sold for 50 cents at newsstands and by subscriptions.
Robinson emphasized that subscriptions must be sold if Kids is to remain in business. "We are losing money on each copy that is bought at the newsstands, but we believe that this is the cheapest form of advertising," he stated.
When asked about the future of the magazine, Robinson said, "What we are trying to do is let the kids and the materials shape the magazine. So we are really a long way from knowing what the magazine can be, or what it will be."