Friday, May 24, 2013

Press4Kids News-O-Matic App {Review}

Press4Kids News-O-Matic App {Review}

My kids are young adults now but when they were little they would sometimes ask  questions about things they saw on the news if they would be in the room.  It is hard to answer questions about why bad things happen and there isn't an easy answer.  It's hard to explain a lot of things to children, even adults can't decipher why bad things happen.

Making sense of the current tragedies around the world from the Boston marathon bombings, to the Oklahoma City Tornadoes to the recent terrorist attack in London can be quite a challenge for adults, let alone children.
As parents know, children process these things differently.  They may be asking difficult questions and parents may need suggestions to help discuss what happened and address their concerns. Since directing them to the New York Times to read about it or any other news source is not an option, Press4Kids developed News-O-Matic.

News-O-Matic is an educational news app that covers breaking news, sports, science and much more in an accessible and kid-friendly way.  News-O-Matic is targeted to kids ages 7-10  and includes five daily news stories, with detailed pictures, videos, illustrations, maps, timelines and games. 

I think News-O-Matic is a wonderful new concept and offers children a way to learn about global events in a way that that may understand better.  It's also reassuring to know that each article is written by a professional staff which includes teachers, and is reviewed by a child psychologist before publication to ensure emotionally safe content.

Below are some tips from Dr. Phyllis Ohr, Child Psychologist for Press4Kids, on how parents can address news issues with children and what children can do to feel better:

1.      When the event does not personally affect the child, reassure them that everything is okay with the people they love and that nothing has changed for them.

2.     Be sure to stress to children that if they do have questions to ask parents, teachers as well as friends. Other children having the same feelings may be comforting.

3.    Begin by giving the child a brief synopsis of what happened by using age appropriate language. Ask if there is something they want to know more about or if they need something explained further. If so, stick to pointedly answering their question or clarifying. Do not add on or digress.

4.    Do not assume the news will make children feel a certain way. Ask if they know how they feel, but stress that kids feel all different ways when they hear important news and sometimes do not know how they feel or do not feel anything which is okay. However, if children are affected by it, it is their own feeling. Reassure children that no matter what they are feeling, their feelings are okay.

5.    If they are upset but don't want to talk, suggest a fun activity for distraction or help them use calming skills like playing, drawing a picture or writing a story. These activities help release any upset feelings and make children feel better.

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post and I am receiving complementary products in exchange for writing this review.  Opinion are my own. 


  1. I definitely want to check out News-O-Matic! I’m so careful about censoring my kids. It’s great that there is a news source tailored just for them!

  2. My son loves News-O-Matic and as a father I love engaging with him in a new way. Keep it up!