The Sunday Times creates 12-page educational supplement, ‘The Children’s Times’, to provide range of activities and exercises for primary school children

Latest edition partners with the Road Safety Authority to help prepare children and parents for a summer outside

Last weekend’s edition centred around Internet Safety – partnering with government funded Webwise to help with increased online habits since lockdown

Over the past 12 weeks, The Sunday Times has created an educational supplement to support parents during the COVID-19 lockdown. Created with agility by STUDIO, The Sunday Times’ in-house creative team, The Children’s Times was first published 2 weeks after Ireland’s lockdown began. The 12-page supplement has been published weekly, both in print and online, and aims to keep children learning and entertained throughout the week while at home.

Every edition contains numerous activities and exercises for primary school children, along with notes from principals and teachers for parents, all set to a different theme. And each week, The Children’s Times has supported a charity that supports children to help elevate their causes and missed fundraising opportunities due to the pandemic. Previous editions have focused on mental health (with Niall ‘Bressie’ Breslin’s charity ‘A Lust for Life’,) sports and fitness (with Cystic Fibrosis Ireland), around the world (with UNICEF), a special Easter edition (with ISPCC) and water safety (with Irish Water Safety). The supplement also created a new commercial opportunity, drawing in new advertisers.

The Children’s Times has garnered a loyal and engaged audience over the past 12 weeks, with a weekly letters page to show for it, featuring children’s letters, short stories, poems and drawings. Due to the huge number of entries, the STUDIO team created a special letters only supplement, featuring 8 pages of children’s entries and coronavirus experiences across Ireland. The front cover was also designed by a reader, 8 year old Aoise from County Cork, after a competition for submissions.

The Children’s Times will run until 28th June and then take a break for the summer holiday.

Karen Price, Group Creative Director at News Ireland, says: “At a time when parents were 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.”