Military Kids’ Life Magazine
This niche publication offers a variety of articles and activities of interest to kids in military families, both about military-specific issues like parental deployment as well as items of general interest like dog training or fashion design. Each issue features a story about a specific military posting, a column offering advice on coping with important issues such as depression or frequent moves, and at least one interview with a military child. Some interviewees share accomplishments in sports, acting, or entrepreneurship, while others discuss family hiking trips or experiencea of living with a disability. Interviews tend to emphasize the importance of giving back to community and of building resilience for hardship, while also acknowledging the variety of unique challenges and opportunities that military families encounter. Each issue also includes at least one article of general interest on topics including dog training and portraits of women in STEM research fields. A few puzzles and activities round out the end of each magazine in the “Mandatory Fun” section.
Military Kids’ Life emphasizes children’s voices and writing. The creative director, Asia Hickman, is herself a talented teen-ager who includes a column of her own fashion designs. The magazine also acknowledges the presence of disability in children’s lives, including mental health issues, on a regular basis. At times, the articles’ emphasis on making the most of hardship can cause some of the stories to blend together a bit for the reader. More hands-on activities might also make the magazine more appealing for its younger readers. Overall, however, Military Kids’ Life provides a unique and important offering for military families.
Naomi Lesley ©2019 Parents’ Choice
Naomi Lesley taught middle and high school English for six years. She is currently in a doctoral program at the George Washington University, focusing on American young adult literature.